In This Section

Grace X. Ma, PhD

Associate Dean, Health Disparities
Director, Center for Asian Health
Laura H. Carnell Professor
Professor, Clinical Sciences

Grace Ma
Contact Information

Contact Information



About Me

Research Interests

  • Behavioral Health Intervention Trials
  • Health Disparities Research  
  • Cancer Prevention and Control
  • Tobacco Control and Lung Cancer
  • Chronic Disease Intervention (Diabetes and Hypertension)
  • Substance Abuse Prevention and Intervention
  • Social Determinants of Health
  • Perception, Risk and Protective Factors of Health Behaviors
  • Global or International Health (China, Vietnam, South Korea)
  • Translational Research


Grace X. Ma, PhD is Associate Dean for Health Disparities, Founding Director of Center for Asian Health, Laura H. Carnell Professor and Professor in Clinical Sciences at Lewis Katz School of Medicine, Temple University. Dr. Ma is a nationally recognized behavioral health scientist and leader in health disparities research. Her community-based participatory research (CBPR) and patient-centered outcomes research (PCOR) focus on early detection, patient navigation, cancer prevention and control (Hepatitis liver cancer, cervical, breast, lung and colorectal cancers), chronic diseases (Hypertension and Diabetes), smoking cessation, and access/quality of healthcare in underserved Asian Pacific Americans and other diverse health disparity populations.

In 2000, Dr. Ma established Temple University Center for Asian Health (CAH), one of the first in the nation dedicated to reducing cancer and health disparities among underserved Asian Americans funded by NIH National Cancer Institute. Dr. Ma in partnership with community leaders co-founded the first Asian Community Health Coalition and Cancer Disparity Network in the U.S. Eastern Region, including Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York City, Delaware and DC/Maryland. 

Over the past 20 years, Dr. Ma has received continual funding on research grants from Federal, State and City organizations, including National Institutes of Health and Centers for Disease Prevention and Control. One of her major accomplishments is her leadership as Principal Investigator of NIH-NCI funded center grants (U54), Asian Community Cancer Health Disparity Center, serving as a regional network of cancer health disparity research, education/ training and community outreach and engagement. Dr. Ma established an innovative model for reducing health disparities and advancing health equity in underserved populations. As the Principal Investigator and co-Principal Investigator, Dr. Ma led and co-led many large-scale randomized intervention trials, as well as implementation and dissemination studies at worksites, community health centers, primary care clinics, community-based organizations and churches (NIH-funded R01s, U01s, R24s). Dr. Ma is also PI for CDC-funded project, Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH)” and PI for PCORI funded A Comparative Trial of Improving Care for Underserved Asian Americans Infected With HBV. Dr. Ma’s research collaboration extends to Southeast and Southwest regions of China, focusing on longitudinal intervention studies of tobacco and cancer prevention and control.

Dr. Ma has authored and co-authored 5 books, over 150 peer-reviewed publications and delivered over 560 professional presentations at regional, national and international conferences. The impacts of her accomplishments are reflected in academic teaching, mentorship, research, as well as in minority population health care policies and practices. Dr. Ma has trained and mentored over 158 faculty, post-doctoral, doctoral and master minority fellows to create a pipeline of diverse researchers and health practitioners to conduct health disparity research in ethnic populations.

Dr. Ma has served on numerous scientific advisory boards and NIH study sections in health disparities research. She has also served on national, state and community health disparity advisory boards. She is an active member of numerous public health professional associations (e.g. American Public Health Association, American Association for Cancer Research), journal editorial boards, national and statewide cancer control plans. Dr. Ma, a recognized academic leader, has received numerous distinguished awards from NIH, academic institutions, scientific associations, and community organizations.

Education, Training & Credentials

Educational Background

  • PhD, Medical Anthropology (Ethnic Community Health), University of Oklahoma
  • MS, Mental Health, University of Oklahoma
  • BA, Xian International Studies University

Honors & Awards

  • Partnership Award by Nanjing Cancer Survivors Association, China, 2010
  • Outstanding Scientific Publication Award, National Cancer Institute-CRCHD, NIH, 2009 
  • Outstanding Health Leadership Award, Chinese Community Center, Inc. NYC, 2009 
  • Distinguished Asian Health Leader Award, Penn Asian Senior Services, 2008 
  • Martin Luther King Award in Reducing Health Disparities Award, National Institutes of Health (NIH), 2005 
  • Community Healthcare Leadership Award, National Cancer Institute, NIH, 2004           
  • National Cancer Institute’s Atlantic Region Cancer Information Service award, 2001

PubMed Publications

View PubMed Publications

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