Sarah Parker is studying what’s happening inside large blood vessels to find better ways to diagnose and treat threatening conditions like atherosclerosis and aneurysms. A UWM alum who earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in kinesiology and psychology at UWM, Parker is a researcher at the Smidt Heart Institute at Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles.
She and her team are looking at the molecular “signatures” of these dangerous diseases. Atherosclerosis, a buildup of plaque on artery walls, contributes to coronary artery disease, a major cause of death in the country. Aortic aneurysms weaken the arteries and predispose them to rupturing. Cedars Sinai is one of the top three centers in the country studying these types of diseases.