Margaret Gatz

Professor of Psychology, Gerontology and Preventive Medicine

Contact Information
E-mail: gatz@usc.edu
Phone: (213) 740-2212
Office: SGM 520

SCRAP Lab Website
IGEMS Consortium
NAS-NRC Twin Registry

Biographical Sketch

Professor Gatz studies the mental health of older adults, particularly psychological well-being over the life-span, age-related change in depressive symptoms, risk and protective factors for Alzheimer disease, and evaluation of the effects of interventions. She directs the Study of Dementia in Swedish Twins, a large longitudinal investigation of genetic and environmental factors in Alzheimer disease, and is part of the iGEMS consortium on Interplay of Genes and Environment Across Multiple Studies, which focuses on determining how social context is related to physical functioning (health, functional ability), and psychological functioning (well-being, cognition) in mid-life and older ages.


Read Reducing the Risk of Alzheimer's Disease: Knowns and Unknowns.

Academic Appointment, Affiliation, and Employment History

Tenure Track Appointments
  • Professor, University of Southern California, 01/01/1985-  
Non-Tenure Track Appointments
  • Foreign Adjunct Professor, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden, 01/01/2000-  


  • Karel, M. J., Ogland-Hand, S., Gatz, M., Unützer, J. (2002). Assessing and treating late-life depression: A casebook and resource guide. New York: Basic Books, 2002. New York, NY: Basic Books.
  • Gatz, M., Messner, M. A., Ball-Rokeach, S. J. (2002). Paradoxes of youth and sport. Albany, New York: State University of New York Press.
  • Gatz, M. (1995). Emerging issues in mental health and aging. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Journal Article
  • Russ, T. C., Gatz, M., Pedersen, N. L., Hannah, J., Wyper, G., Batty, G. D., Deary, I. J., Starr, J. M. (2015). Geographical variation in dementia: Examining the role of environmental factors in Sweden and Scotland. Epidemiology. Vol. 26, pp. 263-270. PubMed Web Address
  • Gatz, M., Harris, J. R., Kaprio, J., McGue, M., Smith, N. L., Snieder, H., Spiro III, A., Butler, D. A. (2014). Cohort profile: The National Academy of Sciences-National Research Council Twin Registry (NAS-NRC Twin Registry). International Journal of Epidemiology. Vol. 10 article
  • Iacono, D., Volkman, I., Nennesmo, I., Pedersen, N. L., Fratiglioni, L., Johansson, B., Karlsson, D., Winblad, B., Gatz, M. (2014). Neuropathologic assessment of dementia markers in identical and fraternal twins. Brain Pathology. Vol. 4, pp. 317-333. article
  • Serrano, J. P., Latorre, J. M., Gatz, M. (2014). Spain: Promoting the welfare of older adults in the context of population aging. Gerontologist. Vol. 54, pp. 733-740. article
  • Gatz, M., Pedersen, N. L. (2013). Study of Dementia in Swedish Twins. Twin Research and Human Genetics. Vol. 16, pp. 313-316. article
  • Pedersen, N. L., Christensen, K., Dahl, A., Finkel, D., Franz, C. E., Gatz, M., Horwitz, B. N., Johansson, B., Johnson, W., Kremen, W. S., Lyons, M. J., Malmberg, B., McGue, M., Neiderhiser, J. M., Petersen, I., Reynolds, C. A. (2013). IGEMS: The Consortium on Interplay of Genes and Environment across Multiple Studies. Twin Research and Human Genetics. Vol. 16, pp. 481-489. article
  • Karel, M. J., Gatz, M., Smyer, M. (2012). Aging and mental health in the decade ahead: What psychologists need to know. American Psychologist. Vol. 67, pp. 184-198. abstract
  • Gatz, M., Reynolds, C. A., Finkel, D., Pedersen, N. L. (2010). Dementia in Swedish twins: Predicting incident cases. Behavior Genetics. Vol. 40, pp. 768–775. article
  • Kendler, K. S., Fiske, A., Gardner, C. O., Gatz, M. (2009). Delineation of two genetic pathways to major depression. Biological Psychiatry. Vol. 65, pp. 808-811. article
  • Fiske, A., Wetherell, J. L., Gatz, M. (2009). Depression in older adults. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology. Vol. 5, pp. 363-389. article
  • Gatz, M., Mortimer, J. A., Fratiglioni, L., Johansson, B., Berg, S., Andel, R., Crowe, M., Fiske, A., Reynolds, C. A., Pedersen, N. L. (2007). Accounting for the relationship between low education and dementia: A twin study. Physiology & Behavior. Vol. 92, pp. 232-237. article
  • Gatz, M., Reynolds, C. A., Fratiglioni, L., Johansson, B., Mortimer, J. A., Berg, S., Fiske, A. E., Pedersen, N. L. (2006). The role of genes and environments for explaining Alzheimer’s disease. Archives of General Psychiatry. Vol. 63, pp. 168-174. article

Honors and Awards

  • American Association for the Advancement of Science Fellow, 11/2012  
  • Honorary degree (MDhc) from Karolinska Institutet, 5/2011  
  • Donald P. Kent Award, Gerontological Society of America, 11/2006  
  • Zenith Fellowship, Alzheimer's Association, 1/2003-12/2004  
  • USC Raubenheimer Outstanding Senior Faculty Award, 2001  
  • Distinguished Mentorship Award, Gerontological Society of America, 1997  

  • Department of Psychology
  • University of Southern California
  • SGM 501
  • 3620 South McClintock Ave.
  • Los Angeles, CA 90089-1061
  • Phone: (213) 740 - 2203