Kirstin Aschbacher, PhD - Contact Information

Kirstin Aschbacher, PhD

Title: Assistant Professor


University of California, San Diego / San Diego State University, PhD, Clinical Psychology

Postgraduate Training:

University of Washington / Harborview Hospital, Clinical Internship; University of California, San Francisco, Postdoctoral Fellowship in Psychology and Medicine

Biography Summary:

Dr. Aschbacher joined the faculty as an Assistant Professor in the Spring of 2012. She has been awarded a Patient-Oriented Career Development Award through the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, and is a Fellow with The Institute for Integrative Health in Baltimore, MD. Her research focuses on mapping the direct physiological pathways from interpersonal and social stressors to cardiovascular disease, in order to develop interventions more specifically tailored to targeting these pathways.

From a psychological perspective, she is excited to discover sources of stress-resilience and vulnerability that provide modifiable targets for interventions. From a biological perspective, she is particularly interested in understanding how these psychosocial factors impact the function of early Endothelial Progenitor Cells (also alternately called Circulating Angiogenic Cells), a key mechanism of vascular rejuvenation and an early marker of cardiovascular risk. As the subjective experience of stress and how one chooses to navigate that event is inherently a dynamic process, she enjoys employing theoretical and analytic approaches from dynamic systems analysis to illuminate how the process unfolds.

Campus Location: Laurel Heights

Publications on PubMed »


Leadership in research, education, psychiatric care and public service