Michelle M. Mielke, PhD, received a BS in neuroscience at the University of Pittsburgh and a PhD in psychiatric epidemiology from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. From 2007 to 2011, Dr. Mielke was an assistant professor in psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. She is currently an associate professor in the Departments of Epidemiology and Neurology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. Dr. Mielke works as a translational epidemiologist to identify fluid and neuroimaging biomarkers for the diagnosis, prediction and/or progression of neurodegenerative diseases. Much of her work has emphasized the utility of blood-based lipids, especially the role of sphingolipids (ceramides and sphingomyelins). In relation to Parkinson’s disease, she is currently examining plasma ceramides and glucosylceramides as potential biomarkers of cognitive and functional progression. Dr. Mielke has more than 80 peer-reviewed publications and is the PI of several NIH- and Foundation-funded clinical- and epidemiological-based grants.