Ziyad Al-Aly, MD

Assistant Professor, School of Medicine

Dr. Al-Aly is the Director of the Clinical Epidemiology Center, and the Chief of Research and Education Service at Veterans Affairs St. Louis Health Care System. Dr. Al-Aly developed significant expertise leveraging the power of big data and advances in statistical methodologies to fill important knowledge gaps that may not be easily answered by other means of scientific inquiry. For example, he led the work which described a link between air pollution and kidney disease and ­– separately – described the global and national burden of diabetes attributable to air pollution. Evidence generated from these studies is widely cited and is contributing to the national and global discussion on the effect of environmental pollution on burden of non-communicable diseases.

Led by Al-Aly, the work uncovered several long term adverse events associated with use of proton pump inhibitors (one of the most commonly prescribed medications in the U.S. and globally). In particular, work which described risks of kidney disease, and of death associated with use of proton pump inhibitors. The body of work surrounding proton pump inhibitors has generated widespread discussion among medical professionals, regulatory agencies, patients, and the public at large; and has motivated the development of deprescription programs to reduce overuse of these medications.