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Current Fellows in the Integrative Tumor Epidemiology Branch

Meet the fellows in the Integrative Tumor Epidemiology Branch (ITEB) and learn about their work.

  • Kara Barnao, B.S., M.S.

    Ms. Barnao, postbaccalaureate fellow in ITEB, investigates the role of co-occurring clonal hematopoiesis on various phenotypes, such as hematologic parameters and malignancies. Her primary mentor is Mitchell Machiela, Sc.D., M.P.H., Earl Stadtman investigator.

  • Quiera S. Booker, Ph.D., M.P.H.

    Dr. Booker, postdoctoral fellow in ITEB, investigates molecular and social factors that contribute to breast cancer disparities under the co-mentorship of Jonine Figueroa, Ph.D. M.P.H., and Gretchen Gierach, Ph.D., M.P.H.

  • Gulzar N. Daya, M.S.

    Ms. Daya, postbaccalaureate fellow in ITEB, is investigating methylation and expression levels of key genes in relation to tumor subtypes and the immune cell microenvironment to associate findings with patient etiologic factors and clinical outcomes. She also is investigating methylation data of a rare bone cancer, chordoma, in Chinese populations. Her mentor is Xiaohong Rose Yang, Ph.D., M.P.H.

  • Alexandra R. Harris, Ph.D., M.P.H., M.S.

    Dr. Harris, postdoctoral fellow in ITEB, investigates the molecular underpinnings of breast cancer risk factors and their influence on tumor development, microenvironment, and progression. Her primary mentor is Gretchen Gierach, Ph.D., M.P.H.

  • Aubrey K. Hubbard, Ph.D., M.P.H.

    Dr. Hubbard, postdoctoral fellow in ITEB, focuses her research on understanding the role of germline and somatic mutations in the genetic etiology of pediatric cancers, under the mentorship of Mitchell Machiela, Sc.D., M.P.H., Earl Stadtman Tenure-Track Investigator.

  • Amber Hurson, Ph.D., M.P.H.

    Dr. Hurson, a staff scientist in ITEB, is continuing her investigation of etiologic and subtype heterogeneity in breast cancer through integrative analyses of risk factor, genomic, and histologic/radiologic imaging data, with the incorporation of computational pathology methods. Her mentor is Mustapha Abubakar, M.D., Ph.D.

  • Rebecca L. Kelly, Ph.D., M.P.H.

    Dr. Kelly, a postdoctoral fellow in ITEB, studies early somatic events in healthy cells and the contribution of germline and environmental factors to their clonal expansion and potential progression to cancer. Her primary mentor is Mitchell Machiela Sc.D., M.P.H.

  • Azhar Khandekar, B.S.

    Mr. Khandekar, an NIH Graduate Partnership Program predoctoral fellow in ITEB, is working on his dissertation research in bioinformatics and systems biology under the supervision of Maria Teresa Landi, M.D., Ph.D., and Ludmil Alexandrov, Ph.D., at the University of California San Diego. Mr. Khandekar is interested in integrating large-scale omics datasets to ultimately elucidate the biological mechanisms that drive cancer formation and progression.

  • Olivia Lee, B.S.

    Ms. Lee, an NIH Graduate Partnership Program predoctoral fellow in ITEB, is working on her dissertation under the mentorship of Stephen Chanock, M.D., Mitchell Machiela, Sc.D., M.P.H., and John Weinstein, M.D., Ph.D., at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Her research focuses on profiling the genomic landscape of thyroid cancer metastasis and concurrent tumor, and investigating the interaction between somatic mutations and regulatory germline variants in Ewing Sarcoma.

  • Paloma Mitra, B.A.

    Ms. Mitra, iCURE postbaccalaureate fellow in ITEB, works on molecular epidemiology studies in cancer survivorship, health disparities, and female cancers. Her mentors are Gretchen Gierach, Ph.D., M.P.H., and Jacqueline B. Vo, Ph.D., R.N., M.P.H.

  • Monjoy Saha, Ph.D.

    Dr. Saha, research fellow in ITEB, is working under the mentorship of Dr. Gretchen Gierach, ITEB, Dr. Choonsik Lee, Radiation Epidemiology Branch, and Dr. Jonas Almeida, Data Science & Engineering Research Group, Trans-Divisional Research Program. In his research, Dr. Saha applies artificial intelligence and machine-learning methodologies to pathologic and radiologic medical imaging and epidemiologic data to investigate the etiology and prognosis of cancers. His main areas of focus are cancer grading/screening, risk prediction, survival analysis, pattern recognition, feature classification, computer-aided diagnosis, natural language processing, and cloud computing.

  • Jian Sang, Ph.D.

    Dr. Sang, postdoctoral fellow in ITEB, works with Maria Teresa Landi, M.D., Ph.D., and Tongwu Zhang, Ph.D., to investigate lung cancer pathogenesis by deep mining of whole genome/exome sequencing data. His doctoral studies included public transcriptome and epigenome data integration and analysis. Currently, Dr. Sang's research interest focuses on the identification of novel predisposing genomic signals using large-scale population-based genomic data and the exploration of their potential clinical applications.

  • Corey Young, Ph.D., M.S.

    Dr. Young, postdoctoral fellow in ITEB, is investigating early-stage clonal chromosomal alterations in leukocytes and their potential relevance for hematological cancer risk, under the mentorship of Mitchell Machiela, Sc.D., M.P.H., Earl Stadtman investigator.

  • Kevin Wang, M.S.

    Mr. Wang, postbaccalaureate fellow in ITEB, is focusing on methodology in statistical genetics, with a concentration on rare-variant analysis, under the mentorship of Earl Stadtman Investigators Diptavo Dutta, Ph.D. and Haoyu Zhang, Ph.D.

  • Wei Zhao, Ph.D.

    Dr. Zhao, research fellow in ITEB, is working with Maria Teresa Landi, Ph.D., M.D., to investigate the etiology and progression of lung cancer in never smokers through a comprehensive genomic analysis and clinical and epidemiologic assessment. She is currently contributing to the development of computational pipelines for transcriptomic analysis. During her doctoral studies, Dr. Zhao worked to characterize the genomic and clinical heterogeneity of breast cancer subtypes using deep-sequencing and microarray.

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