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Assistant Professor
Amal Wanigatunga

Departmental Affiliations

Epidemiology of Aging

Center & Institute Affiliations

Amal Wanigatunga, PhD, MPH, is an epidemiologist who studies physical activity as a powerful therapeutic to increase and maintain a high quality of life among older adults.

Contact Info

2024 E. Monument Street, Suite 2-700, Room 2-726

Research Interests

older adults; aging; disability; disease; physical function; physical activity; sedentary behavior; energy expenditure

Experiences & Accomplishments
University of Florida
University of Florida
University of Florida

Dr. Wanigatunga's primary focus is to investigate the intersection of the aging process and physical activity, a topic that broadly touches all aspects of health. He is currently exploring the interactions among the brain, physical activity, and mobility with aging. Dr. Wanigatunga's ultimate goal is to promote the infusion of healthy levels of physical activity back into the public's routine lifestyle in an effort to increase quality of life, prevent disease and disability, and positively shift the perspective of aging independently as a welcomed stage of life.

Honors & Awards

2018 National Institute on Aging Butler-Williams Scholar

2018 International Psychogeriatric Association’s Sleep and Healthy Aging Symposium Scholarship

2018 Gerontological Society of America Mentoring and Career Development Technical Assistance Workshop Travel Award

Select Publications

Publications that report on how physical activity both affects and is influenced by different states of disability and disease that typically occur during the aging process.

  • Wanigatunga, A. A., Manini, T. M., Cook, D. R., Katula, J. A., Fielding, R. A., Kramer, A. F., ... & Buford, T. W. (2018). Community-based activity and sedentary patterns are associated with cognitive performance in mobility-limited older adults. Frontiers in aging neuroscience, 10, 341.

  • Wanigatunga, A. A., Gresham, G. K., Kuo, P. L., Martinez-Amezcua, P., Zipunnikov, V., Dy, S. M., ... & Schrack, J. A. (2018). Contrasting characteristics of daily physical activity in older adults by cancer history. Cancer.

  • Wanigatunga, A. A., Gill, T. M., Marsh, A. P., Hsu, F. C., Yaghjyan, L., Woods, A. J., ... & Pahor, M. (2018). Effect of Hospitalizations on Physical Activity Patterns in Mobility-Limited Older Adults. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

  • Wanigatunga, A. A., Varadhan, R., Simonsick, E. M., Carlson, O. D., Studenski, S., Ferrucci, L., & Schrack, J. A. (2018). Longitudinal Relationship between Interleukin-6 and Perceived Fatigability among Well-functioning Adults in mid-to-late Life. The Journals of Gerontology: Series A, gly120.

  • Wanigatunga, A. A., Ambrosius, W. T., Rejeski, W. J., Gill, T. M., Glynn, N. W., Tudor-Locke, C., & Manini, T. M. (2017). Association Between Structured Physical Activity and Sedentary Time in Older Adults. JAMA, 318(3), 297-299.

Energy Expenditure, Physical Activity, and Alzheimer's Disease in the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging
The START trial: a proof-of-concept sedentary reduction program for prefrail older adults