Jessica A Peterson

Jessica A Peterson,

Business Phone: (352) 273-5971
Business Email:


ILR Levitt Award for Research on Aging Finalist (Honorable Mention)
2022 · University of Florida
Travis Beck Memorial Scholarship for Dissertation
2021 · University of Oklahoma
Helen Riddle Doctoral Research Award
2020 · University of Oklahoma

Research Profile

The work from my doctoral and post-doctoral programs have allowed me to contribute to science in several distinct areas; body composition and experimental pain, exercise influences on pain and pain modulation, biological aging in chronic pain (specifically epigenetic aging and brain aging using MRI data and machine learning), and how pain and fatigue leads to physical performance and cognitive function limitations. From this experience, I am broadly interested in pursuing two primary research avenues 1) identify biomarkers as to how pain and fatigue may influence brain aging leading to physical and cognitive decline and 2) develop interventions, particularly exercise, to prevent/slow accelerated cognitive decline in those who are often limited in their physical functioning due to pain and/or fatigue. My most recent publications center around understanding the role of aging that contribute to the pain experience particularly with regards to pain related disability, physical function, and cognitive function in those with chronic pain. Additionally, my future research interests include identifying potential mechanisms found among those who have pain and fatigue symptoms and how that may impact brain changes over time leading to accelerated brain aging, and increasing the risk of neurodegenerative diseases that may lead to mobility issues.

Open Researcher and Contributor ID (ORCID)


Areas of Interest
  • Brain Structure
  • Brain imaging
  • COVID-19
  • Chronic Pain
  • Exercise & Lifestyle Interventions
  • Interventional pain medicine
  • Mitochondria
  • Neuroinflammation
  • Pain
  • Pain Assessment in Older Adults
  • Pain Management
  • Pain medicine
  • Resistance Exercise for Clinical Populations including Knee Osteoarthritis
  • Resistance Exercise for Health
  • facilitation of physical activity and exercise


Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness Alters Mechanical Sensitivity, but Not Thermal Sensitivity or Pain Modulatory Function.
Journal of pain research. 17:571-581 [DOI] 10.2147/JPR.S449787. [PMID] 38347855.
Socioeconomic Status, Knee Pain, and Epigenetic Aging in Community-Dwelling Middle-to-Older Age Adults.
The journal of pain. 25(2):293-301 [DOI] 10.1016/j.jpain.2023.06.002. [PMID] 37315728.
Brain predicted age difference mediates pain impact on physical performance in community dwelling middle to older aged adults
Geriatric Nursing. 50:181-187 [DOI] 10.1016/j.gerinurse.2023.01.019. [PMID] 36787663.
Epigenetic age acceleration mediates the relationship between neighborhood deprivation and pain severity in adults with or at risk for knee osteoarthritis pain.
Social science & medicine (1982). 331 [DOI] 10.1016/j.socscimed.2023.116088. [PMID] 37473540.
Genetic counseling practices among outpatient obstetric providers in the Northeast.
American journal of obstetrics & gynecology MFM. 5(11) [DOI] 10.1016/j.ajogmf.2023.101150. [PMID] 37683764.
Pain interference mediates the association between epigenetic aging and grip strength in middle to older aged males and females with chronic pain.
Frontiers in aging neuroscience. 15 [DOI] 10.3389/fnagi.2023.1122364. [PMID] 37032822.
Pain severity, distribution, and duration are associated with spatiotemporal gait performance in community-dwelling older adults with chronic musculoskeletal pain.
Gait & posture. 103:178-183 [DOI] 10.1016/j.gaitpost.2023.05.011. [PMID] 37236053.
Reduction of racial disparities in urine drug testing after implementation of a standardized testing policy for pregnant patients.
American journal of obstetrics & gynecology MFM. 5(5) [DOI] 10.1016/j.ajogmf.2023.100913. [PMID] 36870533.
Self-reported pain and fatigue are associated with physical and cognitive function in middle to older-aged adults
Geriatric Nursing. 50:7-14 [DOI] 10.1016/j.gerinurse.2022.12.015. [PMID] 36640518.
Body composition does not influence conditioned pain modulation and exerciseÔÇÉinduced hyperalgesia in healthy males and females
European Journal of Pain. 26(8):1800-1810 [DOI] 10.1002/ejp.2005.
Catastrophic Health Expenditures With Pregnancy and Delivery in the United States.
Obstetrics and gynecology. 139(4):509-520 [DOI] 10.1097/AOG.0000000000004704. [PMID] 35271537.
Decreased cognitive function is associated with impaired spatiotemporal gait performance in community dwelling older adults with chronic musculoskeletal pain.
Brain and cognition. 159 [DOI] 10.1016/j.bandc.2022.105862. [PMID] 35358922.
Epigenetic Aging Mediates the Association between Pain Impact and Brain Aging in Middle to Older Age Individuals with Knee Pain
Epigenetics. 17(13):2178-2187 [DOI] 10.1080/15592294.2022.2111752. [PMID] 35950599.
Epigenetic aging, knee pain and physical performance in community-dwelling middle-to-older age adults.
Experimental gerontology. 166 [DOI] 10.1016/j.exger.2022.111861. [PMID] 35640781.
Lean Mass is Associated with, but Does Not Mediate Sex Differences in Pressure Pain Sensitivity in Healthy Adults
Journal of Pain Research. Volume 15:3981-3994 [DOI] 10.2147/jpr.s387635.
Obesity Mediates the Relationship between Vitamin D and Accelerated Epigenetic Aging in Females with Knee Pain
International Journal of Obesity and Nutritional Science. 3(1):34-40 [DOI] 10.18689/ijons-1000106.
Social Distancing, Psychological Mood and Physical Activity Behavior During COVID-19 in the United States.
International journal of exercise science. 15(5):313-329 [PMID] 36896448.
Symptomatic but not Asymptomatic COVID-19 Impairs Conditioned Pain Modulation in Young Adults
The Journal of Pain. 23(11):1923-1932 [DOI] 10.1016/j.jpain.2022.06.010. [PMID] 35872293.
Short-Term Analysis (8 Weeks) of Social Distancing and Isolation on Mental Health and Physical Activity Behavior During COVID-19
Frontiers in Psychology. 12 [DOI] 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.652086. [PMID] 33815233.
Severe preterm preeclampsia: an examination of outcomes by race.
American journal of obstetrics & gynecology MFM. 2(4) [DOI] 10.1016/j.ajogmf.2020.100181. [PMID] 33345907.
Endogenous Pain Inhibitory Function: Endurance-Trained Athletes vs Active Controls
Pain Medicine. 20(9):1822-1830 [DOI] 10.1093/pm/pnz014.
Childhood Cancer and Treatment Effects on Motor Performance
International Journal of Exercise Science. 11(3):657-688


Doctor of Philosophy in Exercise Physiology
2016-2021 · University of Oklahoma
Master of Science in Exercise Science
2013-2015 · Oklahoma City University
Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Sport Science
2009-2012 · Cardiff Metropolitan University

Contact Details

(352) 273-5971
Business Mailing:
PO Box 103628
Business Street:
PO Box 103628