Jill Koshiol, Ph.D., investigates the natural history of biliary tract cancers and role of inflammation in their development. Gallbladder cancer is a particularly good model for understanding inflammation-related carcinogenesis since gallstones are present in the vast majority of gallbladder cancer cases and cause substantial inflammation in the gallbladder. Measuring infection and immune responses in biological specimens can provide novel insights into carcinogenesis and disease outcomes, and identify molecular subtypes associated with each. As principal investigator for the Chile Biliary Longitudinal Study (BiLS), Biliary Tract Cancer Pooling Project (BiTCaPP), and Shanghai Biliary Tract Cancer Study, Dr. Koshiol evaluates the epidemiology of biliary tract cancers and associations with inflammation and other immune responses to elucidate etiologic mechanisms and identify cancer-related molecular pathways and targets that one day may be used in cancer prevention.
Meredith Shiels, Ph.D., uses innovative approaches to confront high-impact public health questions with population-based data resources and descriptive analyses. She combines multiple population-based data resources, quantifies the contribution of risk factors to time trends, and disaggregates cancer incidence and mortality rates to reveal underlying patterns and explanatory mechanisms. Currently, her research program focuses on 1) quantifying cancer risk and burden in people living with HIV; 2) estimating the impact of risk factors on changing cancer rates over time; and 3) understanding rising rates of premature mortality in the United States. Dr. Shiels is the co-principal investigator of the HIV/AIDS Cancer Match Study and collaborates widely with colleagues throughout DCEG, across NIH, at the CDC, and at state cancer registries.