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Discovery of Novel Risk and Causative Factors for Cancer investigators

Wendie Berg

Wendie Berg

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

(412) 641-1635 bergwa@upmc.edu UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital
300 Halket St.
Pittsburgh PA
Summary

Dr. Berg’s research interests include contrast-enhanced mammography or MRI for improved screening, comparative effectiveness of new technologies in breast imaging, and artificial intelligence to improve breast ultrasound performance. Her clinical interests include supplemental screening for breast cancer based on risk and breast density, implementing new technologies, standardizing interpretive criteria, and educating referring providers on breast density and optimal screening.

Dr. Berg is the Chief Scientific Advisor for DenseBreast-info.org and holds the Bernard F. Fisher Chair for Breast Cancer Clinical Science. 

Research Interests and Keywords
  • Comparative effectiveness of new technologies in breast imaging,Comparison of tomosynthesis and ultrasound for cancer detection,Risk assessment and breast density,Supplemental screening for breast cancer based on risk
Read More about Wendie Berg
Jane Cauley

Jane Cauley

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

jcauley@pitt.edu 130 De Soto Street, A533 Crabtree Hall
Pittsburgh PA
Summary

Dr. Cauley's primary research interest is the epidemiology of osteoporosis, osteoporosis treatment and the consequences of osteoporosis in both men and women. She also has a major interest in breast cancer and served on the American Society of Clinical Oncology Writing Group about the use of bisphosphonates in women with breast cancer. Her other research has focused on women's health and aging, falls, the interaction between endogenous and exogenous hormones, risk factors, inflammation, and disease outcomes. She examines the physiological changes that occur across the menopausal transition.

Research Interests and Keywords
  • Breast Cancer,Epidemiology,Osteoporosis,sex hormones
Read More about Jane Cauley
Brenda Diergaarde

Brenda Diergaarde

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

412-623-5891 diergaardeb@upmc.edu UPMC Cancer Pavilion
5150 Centre Ave, Suite 4C
Pittsburgh PA
Summary

Dr. Diergaarde's research examines the role of diet, lifestyle and genetic variation in the development, progression and treatment of cancer, including cancers of the lung, head and neck, colon, ovaries and breast, and aims to identify markers for risk stratification, early detection and response to treatment. She is currently Co-Leader of Project 2 of the UPCI Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) in Lung Cancer. This project seeks to establish the relationship between vitamin D exposure, pulmonary inflammation and lung cancer risk and so provide strong rationale for a vitamin D-based approach to lung cancer prevention. She is also Leader of Project 1 of the UPCI SPORE in Head and Neck Cancer. Using data and samples from a large, clinic-based case-control study, this project investigates the role of genetic variation and gene-environment interactions in the development, progression and treatment of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma.

Research Interests and Keywords
  • Biomarkers,cancer epidemiology,Cancer prevention,Diet,Genetic Variation,head and neck cancer,lifestyle,Lung Cancer,Molecular Epidemiology
Read More about Brenda Diergaarde
James Herman

James Herman

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

hermanj3@upmc.edu Hillman Cancer Center, 2.18d
Pittsburgh PA
Research Interests and Keywords
  • Biomarkers,cancer prognosis,DNA Methylation,early detection,Epigenetics,Lung Cancer,Transcription Factors,tumor suppressor genes
Read More about James Herman
Jing Hu

Jing Hu

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

huj3@upmc.edu 5117 Centre Avenue, Suite 2.32B
Pittsburgh PA
Summary

Dr. Hu's lab focuses on the identification and validation of crucial molecular changes that confer high-risk for tumor progression in mutant BRAF-induced serrated intestinal tumorigenesis. Her lab works to identify novel factors essential for serrated CRC development that can serve as pharmacological targets for the prevention of serrated CRC at an early and curable stage. Dr. Hu's lab also works to identify and validate novel functionally relevant and druggable targets for PDAC.

Research Interests and Keywords
  • colorectal tumorigenesis,oncogenic signaling pathways,pancreatic cancer,posttranslational modifications,Transcription Factors
Read More about Jing Hu
Hung Luu

Hung Luu

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

Summary

Dr. Luu has a broad background in medicine and epidemiology, with specific training and expertise in the molecular and genetic epidemiology of cancer as well as large population-based studies. His main research focuses on etiological role of genetic factors, lifestyle factors, and environment exposures, particularly chronic inflammation, in the development of cancer as well as their impact on prognosis of cancer patients, particularly patients with gastrointestinal cancers such as colorectal cancer, pancreatic cancer and liver cancer. 

Read More about Hung Luu
Phuong Mai

Phuong Mai

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

Summary

Dr. Phuong Mai’s work focuses on the role of genetic testing to identify individuals with a hereditary predisposition to cancers, including breast and ovarian cancer. She is also working on risk reducing interventions and early-detection in individuals at increased cancer risk.

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Francesmary Modugno

Francesmary Modugno

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

Summary

Dr. Modugno is a molecular epidemiologist focused on women’s cancers, especially ovarian, breast, and endometrial cancers. Dr. Modugno’s research has examined the underlying epidemiology of ovarian and breast cancer etiology and outcomes with a focus on genetic, hormonal, and immunologic factors. As the Principal Investigator of the HOPE study, one of the largest studies of ovarian cancer risk and prognosis ever conducted in the US (2003-2008), Dr. Modugno was a founding member of the Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium (OCAC), a multinational consortium of ovarian cancer investigators that pools data and resources to investigate ovarian cancer risk and prognostic factors. She currently serves as the OCAC Data Access Chair and is a member of the Steering Committee. She holds similar roles in the international Ovarian Tumor Tissue Association (OTTA), which is investigating the molecular basis for ovarian cancer outcomes. Her recent funding is examining the relationship among humoral and cellular immunity, the gut microbiome, circulating metabolome, and the tumor immune microenvironment in ovarian cancer therapy response. 

Dr. Modugno directs the Women's Cancer Biome Program, which is focused on identifying the relationship between the microbiome and cancer/cancer prevention in women. She also oversees the Gynecologic Oncology Biospecimen and Data Bank (ProMark). The repository collects fresh tissue and biospecimens on women with suspected gynecologic malignancies as well as on healthy women per investigator protocols. The repository also banks specimens for retrospective studies. Resources of the repository are available to researchers interested in gynecologic oncology or related research.

Dr. Modugno co-led the Pittsburgh site for the RPCI/HCC Ovarian Cancer SPORE and directed the Pathology and Biospecimen Core and the Developmental and Career Enhancement Programs. The resources and infrastructure developed by Dr. Modugno during her tenure as a RPCI/HCC SPORE co-leader were leveraged to support the subsequent independent HCC Ovarian SPORE submission.

Read More about Francesmary Modugno
Robert Schoen

Robert Schoen

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

schoen@msx.dept-med.pitt.edu PUH - Mezz. 2 - C Wing
200 Lothrop Street
Pittsburgh PA
Research Interests and Keywords
  • acceptability and implementation of CRC screening,Early detection and prevention of colorectal cancer (CRC),flexible sigmoidoscopy,surveillance colonoscopy
Read More about Robert Schoen
Evelyn Talbott

Evelyn Talbott

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

412-624-3074 eot1@pitt.edu A526 Crabtree Hall
Pittsburgh PA
Summary

Dr. Talbott's areas of expertise are in environmental and cardiovascular epidemiology. Dr. Talbott has worked closely with both state and local health departments to conduct health studies investigating potential linkage of environmental exposures and health effects.

Research Interests and Keywords
  • environmental epidemiology
Read More about Evelyn Talbott
David Whitcomb

David Whitcomb

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

whitcomb@pitt.edu Mezzanine Level
C-Wing-PUH 200 Lothrop Street
Pittsburgh PA
Research Interests and Keywords
  • and pancreatic cancer,chronic pancreatitis,Mechanisms of complex disorders including acute pancreatitis
Read More about David Whitcomb
David Wilson

David Wilson

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

412-687-3355 wilsondo@upmc.edu 5150 Centre Ave. Ste. 4c
Pittsburgh PA
Summary

Dr. Wilson's research interests include: lung cancer screening and early detection, biomarker development and implementation, chemoprevention, diagnosis, staging and treatment of lung cancer; COPD, especially as it relates to lung cancer; occupational lung diseases; and general pulmonary medicine.

Research Interests and Keywords
  • Biomarker Development and Implementation for Early Cancer Detection,COPD,Lung Cancer Screening and Early Detection,Lung Diagnosis and Staging
Read More about David Wilson
Jian-Min Yuan

Jian-Min Yuan

Program: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention

412-864-7889 yuanj@upmc.edu UPMC Cancer Pavilion
5150 Centre Avenue - Suite 4C Office 470
Pittsburgh PA
Summary

Dr. Yuan is a cancer epidemiologist with extensive experience in research on cancer etiology and prevention. Dr. Yuan’s research lab has been continuously funded by National Cancer Institute for more than two decades. Currently, Dr. Yuan’s research focuses on the impact of obesity on risk of cancer. Dr. Yuan also is leading a team of scientists to evaluate the effectiveness of sulforaphane derived from broccoli on reduction of risk markers for lung cancer in high-risk individuals. As Principal Investigator of both the Shanghai Cohort Study and the Singapore Chinese Health Study, two population-based prospective cohorts of more than 80,000 adults with available baseline blood and urine samples with more than 25 years of active follow-up for cancer and other major health outcomes, Dr. Yuan continues to utilize these large cohort resources to discover and validate novel biomarkers for risk of cancer development. These two cohorts have made several noteworthy contributions to the field of cancer epidemiology including (1) dietary aflatoxins as human hepatocarcinogens, (2) significant roles of immune biomarkers and secondary bile acids for the development of hepatocellular carcinoma, (3) dietary isothiocyanates, a group of phytochemicals found in cruciferous vegetables, as potential chemopreventive agents against lung cancer development, and (4) urinary biomarkers of tobacco-specific nitrosamines and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons as specific lung carcinogens in smokers.

Research Interests and Keywords
  • cancer biomarkers,cancer epidemiology,Cancer prevention,cancer risk prediction,Clinical Trials,dietary chemopreventive agents,Gene-environment interaction in cancer etiology,obesity and cancer
Read More about Jian-Min Yuan

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