My multidisciplinary training in infectious disease, breast cancer epidemiology, and molecular epidemiology provides me a unique perspective for understanding and examining the complexities of cancer across the lifecourse. My research portfolio integrates individual level factors (e.g., health behaviors) and the macroenvironment (e.g. physical, social, microbial environment) with biology (e.g. hormonal regulation, epigenetic modification) to inform how these multiple levels of etiology impact breast cancer risk across the lifecourse - from early life to adulthood. My early life research focuses on factors associated with growth and development in girls, where markers of pubertal development are suggested breast cancer risk factors. Studies of women in midlife focus on varied health behaviors in diverse populations that experience a higher burden of cancer. Much of my portfolio is nested within populations that have a higher burden of cancer including those with a genetic predisposition, racial and ethnic minorities, and young women. To date, my contributions to the field have primarily been: (1) examining individual health behaviors to inform genomic medicine practices and women's health; (2) investigating physical and social environmental exposures in early-life and the influence on girls' growth and pubertal development; (3) exploring the role of microbial exposures and the immune system in early life and the influence on girls' growth and pubertal development; and (4) assessing the underlying biological mechanisms that intersect at the individual and macro-environment levels.
Co-Director, Continuing Umbrella of Research Experience (CURE) Program at Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center
Co-Chair, Evaluation Sub-Committee and Member, Internal Coordinating Committee of the Cancer Disparities Research Network (Region 4 of GMaP)
Areas of Expertise
Longitudinal Studies, Adolescent Health, Child Health and Development, Cancer Breast, Chronic Disease, Women's Health, Environmental Risk Factors, Molecular Epidemiology, Epigenetics, Gene-Environment Interactions, Infectious Disease