Dr. Pak conducted post-doctoral research in Sleep Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Center for Sleep and Circadian Neurobiology at Perelman School of Medicine. Her overall research is focused on disturbed sleep as a predictor of adverse health outcomes. Dr. Pak has expertise in sleep medicine, biomarkers, and translational research.
Dr. Pak has experience as a PI of work funded by a NIH F31 examining phthalate biomarkers in susceptible occupational populations, a NIH K99/R00 on biological and genetic mechanisms of sleepiness in sleep apnea and cardiovascular disease, and was recently funded by a NIH R61 focused on improving sleep and AD biomarkers in persons with Alzheimer’s Disease. Her work on examining the biological and genetic mechanisms of sleepiness and the impact of continuous positive airway pressure on cell adhesion molecules in persons with obstructive sleep apnea has been recognized by two American Academy of Sleep Medicine Young Investigator honorable mention awards (in 2013 and 2016-top 2% on peer review). She also has experience as a PI of over a dozen foundation/university funded human research studies in the area of sleep, biomarkers, and Alzheimer’s disease.
Dr. Pak has authored and coauthored over 40 manuscripts and book chapters. Her work has been published in journals such as the International Journal of Obesity-Nature (London), Metabolomics, and SLEEP. She has served as an invited speaker at international conferences on the topics of sleep, biomarkers, and translational research. The goal of her research is to improve sleep and quality of life of individuals and families.
At Emory, Dr. Pak has served as the Vice-Chair of the research committee, an advisory board member of the Emory University Sleep Consortium, and lead of the Emory University Sleep, Life-course, and diverse settings working group.
Prior to coming to Emory, she taught at the University of Pennsylvania and at Yale University. She has previously taught anatomy and physiology and research methods. Besides teaching, Dr. Pak also has experience serving as a mentor for undergraduate, masters, and doctoral level students. She is currently the course coordinator of the undergraduate 2022-2024 Honors program.
Areas of Interest
- Cardiovascular Diseases
- Clinical Trials
- Sleep Epidemiology
- Undergraduate 2005, University of Pennsylvania
- MS/PhD 2011, University of Pennsylvania
- MTR (Translational) 2016, University of Pennsylvania
- Pak, V.M., Maislin D. G., Keenan B. T., Townsend R. R., Benediktsdottir, B., B., Pack, A., Gislason, T., & Kuna, S. , 2023, Obesity does not modify the effect of continuous positive airway pressure on insulin resistance in adults with obstructive sleep apnoea, ERJ Open, ,
- Pak, V. M., Paul, S., Swieboda, D., Balthazar, M., & Wharton, W. , 2022, Sleep duration and biomarkers of inflammation in African American and white participants with a parental history of Alzheimer's disease. , Alzheimer's and Dementia, 8,
- Pak, V. M., Russell, K., Shi, Z., Zhang, Q., Cox, J., Uppal, K., Yu, T., Hertzberg, V., Liu, K., Ioachimescu, O., Collop, N., Bliwise, D., Kutner, N., Rogers, A., & Dunbar, S. , 2022, Sphinganine is associated with 24-hour MAP in the non-sleepy with OSA. , Metabolomics, 18,
- Pak, V.M.,Maislin, D.G., Keenan, B.T., Townsend, R., Benediksdottir, B., Dunbar, S.,Pack, A.I., Gislason, T., Kuna, S.T. , 2021, Changes in sleepiness and 24-h blood pressure following 4months of CPAP treatment are not mediated by ICAM-1., Sleep and Breathing, ,
- Pak,V.M., Butts, B., Hertzberg, V., Collop, N., Quyyumi, A., Cox, J., Rogers, A.,Dunbar S. , 2020, Daytime Sleepiness Predicts Inflammation and Ambulatory Blood Pressure in Sleep Apnea. , ERJ Open, ,
- Pak, V.M., Mazzoti, D., Keenan, B., Hirotsu, C., Gehrman, P., Bittencourt L., Pack, A., Tufik, S. , 2018, Candidate Gene Analysis in the São Paulo Epidemiologic Sleep Study (EPISONO) Shows an Association of Variant in PDE4D and Sleepiness, Sleep Medicine, ,
- Pak, V. M., Dai, F., Keenan, B. T., Gooneratne, N. S., & Pack, A. I. , 2018, Lower plasma choline levels are associated with sleepiness symptoms. , Sleep Medicine, ,
- Pak, V. M., Onen, S. H., Gooneratne, N. S., Fallisard, B., & Onen, F. , 2016, Observation and Interview-based Diurnal Sleepiness Inventory for measurement of sleepiness in older adults., Nature and Science of Sleep, 12, 502-512
- Pak, V. M., Keenan, B. T., Jackson, N., Grandner, M. A., Maislin, G., Teff, K., Schwab, R. J., Arnordottir, E. S., Juliusson, S., Benediktsdottir, B., Gislason, T., & Pack, A. I. , 2015, Adhesion molecule increases in sleep apnea: Beneficial effect of positive airway pressure and moderation by obesity., International Journal of Obesity-Nature, 39, 472-479