Leilei Zeng

Associate Professor
Leilei Zeng

Contact Information:
Leilei Zeng

Research interests

Professor Zeng's research interest lies in the development of statistical methodologies for public health and medical research. Specific research topics include methods for event history and longitudinal data analysis, multistate models, marginal models, incomplete observed data, design of clinical and epidemiological studies, and model misspecification and evaluation. Her current main research collaborations and applications are related to studies in Rheumatic diseases, dementia and Alzheimer disease, and stress and reproduction in women.


Leilei Zeng joined the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science at the University of Waterloo as an associate professor and the Graham Trust Chair in Health Statistics in 2011.

Professor Zeng completed her BSc in Statistics from Nankai University in 1998, and then went on to receive her masters and PhD in Biostatistics from the University of Waterloo (1999-2005). Upon the completion of her graduate study, Professor Zeng worked first as a postdoctoral fellow and then as an assistant professor (2006-2011) at Simon Fraser University (SFU) with a joint appointment in the Department of Statistics & Actuarial Science and the Faculty of Health Sciences. During this time, she actively participated in the establishment of the new Faculty of Health Sciences at SFU as one of the founding faculty members, and forged several major ongoing collaborations with researchers in health sciences.

Professor Zeng was the Graham Trust Chair in Health Statistics at the University of Waterloo (2011-2016). She was also a recipient of the University Faculty Award from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). She has successfully obtained research grants from NSERC, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), and the Chemical Management Plan of the Government of Canada as the Principle Investigator and the Co-Principle Investigator.  Professor Zeng has been a member of the Committee on Women in Statistics (COWIS) of the Statistics Society of Canada (SSC) and also served as the SSC representative to the Caucus for Women in Statistics and to the COWIS of the American Statistical Association.

Selected publications

  • Zeng L, Cook RJ, Lee K-A. “Design of cancer trials based on progression-free survival with intermittent assessment”, under revision, Statistics in Medicine, 2018
  • Moon NC, Zeng L, Cook RJ. “Tracing studies in cohorts with attrition: selection models for efficient sampling", accepted, Statistics in Medicine, 2017
  • Zeng L, Cook RJ, Wen L, Boruvka A. “Bias in progression-free survival analysis due to intermittent assessment of progression”, Statistics in Medicine, 34(24) 3181-3193, 2015.
  • Nepomnaschy PA, Salvante KG, Zeng L, Pyles C, Ma H, Blais JC, Wen L, Barha CK. “Variation in maternal cortisol profiles across the peri-conceptional period: A longitudinal description and evaluation of potential functions”, Human Reproduction, 30(6): 1460-1472, 2015.
  • Sarkar PL, Zeng L, Chen Y, Salvante KG, Nepomnaschy PA. “A Longitudinal evaluation of the relationship between first morning urinary and salivary cortisol”, American Journal of Human Biology, 25(3): 351-358, 2013.
  • Nepomnaschy PA, Lee T, Zeng L and Dean CB. “Who is stressed? Comparing cortisol levels between individuals”. American Journal of Human Biology, 24(4): 515-525, 2012.
  • Lu Y, Zeng L. “A non-homogeneous Poisson hidden Markov model for claim counts”, ASTIN Bulletin - The Journal of the International Actuarial Association, 42(1), 181-202, May 2011.
  • Lee T, Zeng L, Thompson DJS and Dean CB. “Comparison of imputation methods for interval censored time-to-event data in Joint modeling of tree growth and mortality”, The Canadian Journal of Statistics, 39(3), 438-457, 2011.
  • Yi GY, Zeng L and Cook RJ. “A robust pairwise likelihood method for incomplete longitudinal binary data arising in clusters”, The Canadian Journal of Statistics, 39(1), 34-51, 2011.
  • Zeng L, Cook RJ and Warkentin TE. “Regression analysis with a misclassified covariate from a current status observation scheme”, Biometrics, 66:415-425, 2010.
  • Tomkinson J. Palmer A, Phung C, Joffres M. Zeng L, Lima V, Guyatt MD, Mills EJ. “Does the ratification of human rights treaties impact population health?”, The Lancet, 373(9679), 1987-1992, 2009.
  • Cook RJ, Zeng L and Lee K. “A multistate model for bivariate interval censored failure time data”, Biometrics, 64: 1100-1109, 2008.
  • Zeng L and Cook RJ. “Transition models for multivariate longitudinal binary data”, Journal of the American Statistical Association, 102(477), 211-223, March 2007.