Elisa Torres, PhD, RN

Elisa Torres, PhD, RN

Associate Professor

366 Cohn, 5557 Cass Ave., Detroit, MI 48202

Elisa Torres, PhD, RN

Bio Sketch

Dr. Torres' program of research surrounds physical activity and the brain. Her dissertation focused on physical activity and depressive symptoms in African Americans (1F31NR010669; PI: Torres). She added a genetics component to her research during a postdoctoral fellowship (T32NR007110; PI: Williams) and examined physical activity and areas of the brain related to depression (John A. Hartford Foundation pilot award, PI: Torres). As junior faculty, she compared the effects of physical activity and mindfulness-based stress reduction (KL2TR000428; PI: Drezner). She is currently examining physical activity and areas of the brain associated with Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders (Alzheimer's Association International Research Grant Program, PI: Torres). Dr. Torres is a former recipient of the year-long University of Wisconsin-Madison Teaching and Learning Excellence – Early Career Faculty Fellowship. She attended the Blend@UW Course Design Program and earned her professional certificate in online education through University of Wisconsin Continuing Studies. Dr. Torres is certified in online education through Quality Matters in Applying the QM Rubric and Peer Reviewer Course. She was a fellow in the Wisconsin Teaching Fellows and Scholars Program, resulting in two publications related to the scholarship of teaching and learning. As an educator, Dr. Torres has taught research to undergraduate and graduate students and mentored 45 undergraduate and 12 graduate students at the University of Wisconsin-Madison to present 14 research posters at three conferences. She has also mentored one junior faculty, two PhD students, five MSN students, and one undergraduate student to present at the 2022 Inaugural Research Day at the School of Nursing, University of Mississippi Medical Center. Dr. Torres served as a research mentor for the undergraduate student who was awarded a Jackson Heart Study Training and Education Center – Diversity Supplement. She has served on various committees, such as Faculty Organization; Undergraduate Program including Admittance & Progression; Teaching Academy; Faculty Appointment, Promotion & Tenure; and Research Council. She also reviews for several journals such as the Journal of Transport & Health and Preventive Medicine. Additionally, Dr. Torres reviews for several grants, including the Alzheimer’s Association International Research Grant Program and the Mind & Life Varela Grants.


  • Postdoctoral Fellowship in Nursing, University of Iowa, 2009-2011
  • PhD, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, 2009
  • M.S. in Clnical Research University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, 2008
  • MSN, Grand Valley State University, 2004
  • BSN, University of Illinois Chicago, 1996
  • BSN, University of Illinois Chicago, 1991

Selected publications

  • Torres, E. R., Bendlin, B., Kassahun-Yimer, W., Magnotta, V. A., & Paradiso S. (2021). Transportation physical activity earlier in life and areas of the brain related to dementia later in life. Journal of Transport & Health, 20, 100992. PMID: 33447516 PMCID: PMC7802755
  • Torres, E. R., Duck, A. A., & Kassahun-Yimer, W. (2021). Household physical activity and risk for future falls in community-dwelling older adults. Journal of Gerontological Nursing, 47(6), 13-18. PMID: 34044683 PMCID: PMC8480534
  • Torres, E. R., Tumey, T. A., Dean, D. C., Kassahun-Yimer, W., Lopez-Lambert, E. D., & Hitchcock, M. E. (2020). Non-pharmacological Strategies to obtain usable magnetic resonance images in non-sedated infants: Systematic review and meta-analysis. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 106, 103551. PMID: 32294563 PMCID: PMC7800149
  • Barrett, B., Torres, E. R., Meyer, J., Barnet, J. H., Brown, R., (2019). Predictors of sustained adherence to exercise and meditation practice, from MEPARI-2, a randomized controlled trial. Mindfulness, 10, 1842-1854. PMID: 31938076 PMCID: PMC6959135
  • Torres, E. R., Hoscheidt, S. M., Bendlin, B., Magnotta, V. A., Lancaster, G.U, Brown, R. L., & Paradiso S. (2019). Lifetime physical activity and white matter hyperintensities in cognitively-intact adults. Nursing Research, 68, 210-217. PMID: 30672910 PMCID: PMC6715893
  • Torres, E. R. (2018). Validation of the Lifetime Total Physical Activity Questionnaire (LTPAQ) in adults with a history of late-onset depression. Archives of Psychiatric Nursing, 32, 580-584. PMID: 30029751 PMCID: PMC6055523
  • Meyer, J. D., Torres, E. R., Grabow, M. L., Zgierska, A. E., Teng, H. Y., Coe, C. L., & Barrett, B. P. (2018). Benefits of 8-Week MBSR or aerobic training on seasonal declines in physical activity. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 50, 1850-1858. PMID: 30113538; PMCID: PMC6130204
  • Barrett, B., Hayney, M. S., Muller, D., Rakel, D., Brown, R., Zgierska, A. E., Checovich, M. M., Barlow, S., Hayer, S., Barnet, J. H., Torres, E. R., Coe, C. L. (2018). Meditation or exercise for preventing acute respiratory infection (MEPARI-2): A randomized controlled trial. PLOS ONE, 13(6), e0197778. PMID: 29933369 PMCID: PMC6014660
  • Torres, E. R., Sampselle, C., Ronis, D. L., Neighbors, H. W., & Gretebeck, K. A. (2016). Gardening/yard work and depressive symptoms in African-Americans. Archives of Psychiatric Nursing, 30, 155-161. PMID: 26992864 PMCID: PMC4799838
  • Torres, E. R., Sampselle, C., Neighbors, H. W., Ronis, D. L., & Gretebeck, K. A. (2015). Depressive symptoms and walking in African-Americans. Public Health Nursing, 32, 381-387. PMID: 25475884 PMCID: PMC4457717
  • Torres, E. R., Strack E. F., Fernandez, C. E, Tumey, T. A., & Hitchcock, M. E. (2015). Physical activity and white matter hyperintensities: A systematic review of quantitative studies. Preventive Medicine Reports, 2, 319-325. PMID: 26046015 PMCID: PMC4450803
  • Torres, E. R. (2013). Disability and comorbidity among major depressive disorder and double depression in African-American adults. Journal of Affective Disorders, 150(3), 1230-1233. PMID: 23809403 PMCID: PMC3759528
  • Torres, E. R., Sampselle, C., Ronis, D. L., Neighbors, H. W., & Gretebeck, K. A. (2013). Leisure-time physical activity in relation to depressive symptoms in African-Americans: Results from the National Survey of American Life. Preventive Medicine, 56, 410-412. PMID: 23480972 PMCID: PMC4057059
  • Torres, E. R. (2012). Psychometric Properties of the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale in African-American and Black Caribbean Adults. Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 33(10), 687-696. PMID: 23017046 PMCID: PMC4124820
  • Torres, E. R., Sampselle, C., Gretebeck, K. A., Ronis, D. L., & Neighbors, H. W. (2010). Physical activity effects on depressive symptoms in Black adults. Journal of Health Disparities Research and Practice, 4(2), 70-87. PMID: 22984655 PMCID: PMC3440010

Complete List of Published Work in MyBibliography

Courses taught by Elisa Torres, PhD, RN

Winter Term 2024 (current)

Fall Term 2023

Winter Term 2023

Fall Term 2022

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