Dr. Steven H Belle, PhD, MScHyg

Professor, Epidemiology

Professor, Biostatistics

Co-Director, Epidemiology Data Center, Epidemiology


605 Schenley Place, 4420 Bayard Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15260
R-znvy: oryyr@rqp.cvgg.rqh
Primary Phone: 967-179-0992
Secondary Phone: 967-179-0964

Patricia Zogran, mbtena@cvgg.rqh, 967-179-0964

Personal Statement

Designing, coordinating and analyzing data from clinical trials and patient and procedure registries. My major areas of application include liver diseases, aging (especially cognitive impairment, dementia, and caregiving) and obesity. Performing epidemiological and statistical research in chronic and infectious diseases, quality of life, gerontology, and obesity. Designing and implementing systems for data analysis. Designing and applying innovative statistical techniques.  Database design and implementation.


  • University of Pennsylvania, BA, Mathematics
  • University of Pittsburgh, MSc.Hyg, Biostatistics    
  • University of Michigan, PhD, Biostatistics


  • Advanced Topics in Epidemiological Methods (Current)
  • Epidemiologic Methods I and II (Past)

Positions Held

  • 2005-Present: Professor, Department of Epidemiology, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh
  • 2005-Present: Professor, Department of Biostatistics, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh (Secondary Appointment)
  • 2000-2004: Associate Professor, Department of Biostatistics, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh (Secondary Appointment)
  • 1985-2005: Research Associate, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh
  • 1988-1996: Assistant Professor, School of Nursing, University of Pittsburgh (Joint Appointment)
  • 1982-1985: Chief of Biostatistics, Division of Epidemiology, Michigan Cancer Foundation, Detroit, MI
  • 1976-1982: Statistician, Senior Statistician, Department of Social Oncology, Michigan Cancer Foundation, Detroit, MI


  • Fellow of The Society for Clinical Trials (Elected 2018)
  • American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (Elected 2009)
  • American Society for Bariatric Surgery (Elected 2004)
  • Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America (Elected 2003)
  • Delta Omega Honor Society in Public Health-Omicron Chapter (Elected 1994)

University Service

  • Member, Pitt Public Health Faculty Appointment, Promotion, and Tenure Committee (2017-2019)
  • Member, Provost's Working Group on Using Assessment to Improve Institutional Effectiveness (2010-2012)
  • Chair, Pitt Public Health Faculty Appointment, Promotion, and Tenure  Committee (2006-2011)
  • Chair, Department of Epidemiology Curriculum Committee  (2003-2005)
  • President, Pitt Public Health Faculty Assembly (2003-2004)
  • Member, Provost's Ad Hoc Committee on Academic Freedom (2002-2003)
  • Secretary, University of Pittsburgh Faculty Senate (2001-2002)
  • Chair, University of Pittsburgh Senate Committee on Bylaws and Procedures (1998-2000)
  • Member, University of Pittsburgh Faculty Assembly (1997-2009)

Current Projects

  • Data Coordinating Center for the Hepatitis B Research Network (Principal Investigator)
  • Cross-study analysis of coordinated randomized clinical trials for weight management (Principal Investigator) 
  • Alzheimer's Disease Research Center (Biostatistics and Data Management Core Principal Investigator)

Selected Publications

  1. White GE, Courcoulas AP, King WC, Flum DR, Yanovski SZ, Pomp A, Wolfe BM, Spaniolas K, Pories W, Belle SH. Mortality after bariatric surgery: Findings from a 7-year multicenter cohort study.  Surg Obes Relat Dis. 2019 Oct;15(10):1755-1765. PMID: 31564635. PMCID: PMC6834906.
  2. King WC, Belle SH, Hinerman AS, Mitchell JE, Steffen KJ, Courcoulas AP. Patient behaviors and characteristics related to weight regain following Roux-en-Y gastric bypass: A multicenter prospective cohort study. Annals of Surgery. 2019 Apr 4. PMID: 30950861.
  3. Tate DF, Lytle L, Polzien K, Diamond M, Leonard KR, Jakicic JM, Johnson KC, Olson CM, Patrick K, Svetkey, LP, Wing RR, Lin PH, Coday M, Laska MN, Merchant G, Czaja SJ, Schulz R, Belle SH. Deconstructing weight management interventions for young adults: Looking inside the black box of the EARLY Consortium trials. Obesity (Silver Spring) 2019 May 28. PMID: 31135102. 2019 Apr 4. PMID: 30950861.
  4. Rosenthal P, Ling SC, Belle SH, Murray KF, Rodriguez-Baez N, Schwarzenberg SJ, Teckman J, Lin H-HS, Schwarz KB for the Hepatitis B Research Network.  Combination of entecavir/peginterferon alfa-2a in children with HBeAg-positive immune tolerant chronic hepatitis B virus infection. Hepatology. 2018 Oct 15. PMID: 30318613. PMCID: PMC6465180.
  5. Courcoulas AP, King W, Belle SH, Berk P, Flum DR, Garcia L, Gourash W, Horlick M, Mitchell JE, Pomp A, Pories WJ, Purnell JQ, Singh A, Spaniolas K, Thirlby R, Wolfe BM, Yanovski SZ.  Seven-year weight trajectories and health outcomes in the Longitudinal Assessment of Bariatric Surgery (LABS) Study.  JAMA Surgery. 2018 May;153(5):427-434.  PMID: 29214306. PMCID: PMC6584318.
  6. Jakicic JM, Davis KK, Rogers RJ, King WC, Marcus MD, Helsel D, Rickman AD, Wahed AS, Belle SH. Effect of wearable technology combined with a lifestyle intervention on long-term weight loss: The IDEA randomized clinical trial.  JAMA. 2016 Sep 20;316(11):1161-1171. PMID: 27654602. PMC J PMCID: PMC5480209. Reply to Letters JAMA. 2017Jan. 17;317(3):319-320
  7. Belle SH, Stevens J, Cella D, Foltz JL, Loria CM, Muray DM, Czajkowski SM, Arteaga S, Thom E, Pratt CA. Overview of the obesity intervention taxonomy and pooled analysis working group. Systematic reviews: Translational Behavioral Medicine. 2016 June;6(2), 244-259. PMID: 27356995. PMCID: PMC4927443.
  8. King WC, Chen J-Y, Belle SH, Courcoulas AP, Dakin GF, Elder KA, Flum DR, Hinojosa MW, Mitchell JE, Pories WJ, Wolfe BM, Yanovski SZ. Change in pain and physical function following bariatric surgery for severe obesity. JAMA. 2016 Apr 5;315(13):1362-71. PMID: 27046364. PMCID: PMC4856477.
  9. Jakicic JM, King WC, Marcus MD, Davis KK, Helsel D, Rickman AD, Gibbs BB, Rogers RJ, Wahed A, Belle SH. Short-term weight loss with diet and physical activity in young adults: The IDEA study. Obesity (Silver Spring) 2015 Dec;23(12):2385-97. PMID: 26538477. PMCID: PMC4701624.
  10. Courcoulas AP, Belle S, Neiberg R, Pierson S, Eagleton J, Kalarchian M, DeLany J, Lang W, Jakicic J. Three year outcomes of bariatric surgery vs. lifestyle intervention for type 2 diabetes mellitus treatment: A randomized trial. JAMA Surg. 2015 Oct;150(10):931-40 PMID: 26132586. PMCID: PMC4905566.
  11. King WC, Chen JY, Bond DS, Belle SH, Courcoulas AP, Patterson EJ, Mitchell JE, Inabnet WB, Dakin GF, Flum DR, Cook B, Wolfe BM. Objective assessment of changes in physical activity and sedentary behavior: Pre- through 3 years post-bariatric surgery. Obesity (featured article). 2015 Jun;23(6):1143-50. PMID: 26010326. PMCID: PMC4445467
  12. Wolfe BM, Belle SH. Long-term risks and benefits of bariatric surgery: A research challenge. JAMA. 2014 Nov 5;312(17):1792-1793. PMID: 25272252.
  13. Puzziferri N, Roshek III TB, Mayo HG, Gallagher R, Belle SH, Livingston EH. Long-term follow-up after bariatric surgery: A systematic review. JAMA. 2014 Sep 3;312(9):934-942. PMID: 25182102. PMCID: PMC4409000.
  14. Adeniji AK, Belle SH, Wahed AS. Incorporating diagnostic accuracy into the estimation of discrete survival function. Journal of Applied Statistics. 2014;41(1):60-72.
  15. Wolfe BM, Purnell JQ, Belle SH. Treating diabetes with surgery. Editorial. JAMA. 2013;309(21):2274-2275.
  16. Fried MW, Navarro VJ, Afdahl N, Belle SH, Wahed AS, Hawke RL, Doo E, Meyers CM, Reddy KR for the Silymarin in NASH and C Hepatitis (SyNCH) Study Group. Effect of Silymarin (Milk Thistle) on liver disease in patients with chronic hepatitis C infection who failed interferon therapy: A randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 2012 Jul 18;308(3):274-282. PMID: 22797645. PMCID: PMC3683986.
  17. Squires RH, Dhawan A, Alonso E, Narkewicz MR, Shneider BL, Rodriguez-Baez N, Dell Olio D, Karpen S, Bucuvalas J, Lobritto S, Rand E, Rosenthal P, Horslen S, Ng V, Subbarao G, Kerkar N, Rudnick D, Lopez MJ, Schwarz K, Romero R, Elisofon S, Doo E, Robuck PR, Lawlor S, Belle SH for the Pediatric Acute Liver Failure Study Group. Intravenous N-acetylcysteine in pediatric patients with non-acetaminophen acute liver failure: A placebo-controlled clinical trial. Hepatology. 2013 Apr;57(4):1542-1549. PMID: 22886633. PMCID: PMC3509266.
  18. Schulz R, Czaja SJ, McKay JR, Ory MG, Belle SH. Intervention taxonomy (ITAX): describing essential features of interventions. American Journal of Health Behavior. 2010 Nov-Dec;34(6):811-821. PMID: 20604704. PMCID: PMC2900778.
  19. Longitudinal Assessment of Bariatric Surgery (LABS) Consortium, Flum DR, Belle SH, King WC, Wahed AS, Berk P, Chapman W, Pories W, Courcoulas A, McCloskey C, Mitchell J, Patterson E, Pomp A, Staten MA, Yanovski SZ, Thirlby R, Wolfe B. Perioperative safety in the longitudinal assessment of bariatric surgery. N Engl J Med. 2009 Jul 30;361(5):445-54. PMID: 19641201. PMCID: PMC2854565.
  20. Taylor MW, Tsukahara T, Brodsky L, Schaley J, Corneliu S, Stephens MJ, McClinitick JN, Edenberg HJ, Li L, Tavis JE, Howell C, Belle SH. Changes in gene expression during pegylated interferon and ribavirin therapy of chronic hepatitis C virus distinguish responders from nonresponders to antiviral therapy. J Virol. 2007 Apr;81(7):3391-401. PMID: 17267482. PMCID: PMC1866036
  21. Belle SH, Burgio L, Burns R, Coon D, Czaja SJ, Gallagher-Thompson D, Gitlin LN, Klinger J, Koepke KM, Lee CC, Martindale-Adams J, Nichols L, Schulz R, Stahl S, Stevens A, Winter L, Zhang S. Enhancing the quality of life of dementia caregivers from different ethnic or racial groups: a randomized controlled trial. Ann Intern Med. 2006 Nov 21;145(10):727-38. PMID: 17116917. PMCID: PMC2585490. 
  22. Czaja SJ, Schulz R, Belle SH, Burgio LD, Armstrong N, Gitlin LN, Coon DW, Martindale-Adams J, Klinger J, Stahl SM. Data and safety monitoring in social behavioral intervention trials: the REACH II experience. Clinical Trials. 2006;3(2):107-118. PMID: 16773953. PMCID: PMC1484572. 
  23. Schulz R, Belle SH, Czaja SJ, McGinnis KA, Stevens A, Zhang S. Long-term care placement of dementia patients and caregiver health and well-being. JAMA. 2004;292(8):961-967. PMID: 15328328 
  24. Schulz R, Mendelsohn AB, Haley WE, Mahoney D, Allen RS, Zhang S, Thompson L, Belle SH. Resources for Enhancing Alzheimer's Caregiver Health Investigators. End of life care and the effects of bereavement among family caregivers for persons with dementia. N Engl J Med. 2003;13;349(20):1936-42. PMID: 14614169.
  25. Czaja SJ, Schulz R, Lee CC, Belle SH. A methodology for describing and decomposing complex psychosocial and behavioral Interventions. Psychology and Aging. 2003;18(3):385-395. PMID: 14518802. 
  26. Belle SH, Czaja SJ, Schulz R, Zhang S, Burgio L, Gitlin L, Jones R, Mendelsohn AB, Ory M. Using a new taxonomy to combine the uncombinable: Integrating results across diverse caregiving interventions. Psychol Aging. 2003;18(3):396-405. PMID 14518803.
  27. Muldoon MF, Manuck SB, Mendelsohn AB, Kaplan JR, Belle SH. Cholesterol reduction and non-illness mortality: meta-analysis of randomised clinical trials. British Medical Journal. 2001;322(7277):11-15. PMID: 11141142. PMCID: PMC26598.
  28. Belle SH, Mendelsohn AB, Seaberg EC, Ratcliff G. A brief cognitive screening battery for dementia in the community. Neuroepidemiology. 2000;19(1):43-50. PMID: 10654287.
  29. Belle SH, Porayko MK, Hoofnagle JH, Lake JR, Zetterman RK for the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) Liver Transplantation Database (LTD). Changes in quality of life after liver transplantation among adults. Liver Transplantation and Surgery. 1997;3(2):93-104. PMID: 9346722.
  30. Belle SH, Seaberg EC, Ganguli M, Ratcliff G, DeKosky S, Kuller. LH. The effect of education and gender adjustment on the sensitivity and specificity of a cognitive screening battery for dementia:: Results from the MoVIES project. Neuroepidemiology, 1996;15(6):321-329. PMID: 8930945.
  31. Belle SH, Detre KM, Beringer KC. The relationship between outcome of liver transplantation and experience in new centers. Liver Transplantation and Surgery. 1995;1(6):347-353. PMID: 9346610

Steven H Belle