After serving two years as a postdoctoral research associate in the UF College of Dentistry Department of Community Dentistry and Behavioral Science, Alisa J. Johnson, Ph.D., L.M.T., joined the college as a research assistant professor in November 2020.
Prior to her appointment as a research assistant professor, Johnson also served as a visiting scholar to the UF College of Medicine’s Institute of Aging, housed in the Clinical and Translational Science Institute on UF’s campus, where she is currently the project manager on a National Institutes of Health Institute on Aging grant for the UF Resource Center for Minority Aging Research.
Johnson’s research interests include studying the effects and mechanisms underlying complementary and integrative health interventions for pain, leading to the development of tailored interventions for improved health outcomes among middle-aged and older adults. She is also interested in exploring effects of health behaviors, for example diet and exercise, to improve health outcomes in people with chronic pain.
Johnson is a licensed massage therapist, which complements her primary research interests under the umbrella of integrative health interventions for pain – one of which is determining the mechanisms underlying the effects of mind-body interventions, with an emphasis on massage therapy, music and hypnotic suggestion.
Johnson earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology in 2012 from John Brown University in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, where she graduated magna cum laude, and went on to earn both her master’s and doctoral degrees in experimental psychology from Baylor University in Waco, Texas, in 2016 and 2018, respectively. She earned her massage therapy certificate from White River School of Massage in 1999, and has been a licensed massage therapist for eight years.
Johnson is a member of the International Association for the Study of Pain, a student/trainee member of the Society of Behavioral Medicine, a professional member of the American Massage Therapy Association and an active member of Psi Chi International Honor Society in Psychology.