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Discovering the causes of cancer and the means of prevention

Current Fellows in the Integrative Tumor Epidemiology Branch

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

  • Derek Brown, Ph.D.

    Dr. Brown, a postdoctoral fellow in ITEB, is working with Mitchell Machiela, Sc.D., M.P.H., on clonal genetic mosaicism and cancer risk. During his doctoral studies, Dr. Brown investigated novel propensity score methods for non-binary treatments. His work currently focuses on the role played by germline genetics and somatic mutations on future cancer risk.

  • Frank J. Colón-Matos, B.S.

    Mr. Colón-Matos, an iCURE postbaccalaureate fellow in ITEB, works with Maria Teresa Landi, M.D., Ph.D. on the Sherlock-Lung study, collecting and analyzing epidemiological and clinical data and participating in the design and implementation of the pathology-related work within the study.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • Brittany Lord, Ph.D., M.P.H., M.S.

    Dr. Lord, an NCI Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program postdoctoral fellow in ITEB, is working with Gretchen Gierach, Ph.D., M.P.H., to assess epidemiologic and epigenetic risk factors for breast cancer, focusing on women of African ancestry. Her doctoral research focused on breast cancer disparities in women of African ancestry. She focused on defining the role of the atypical chemokine receptor (ACKR1/DARC) gene in modifying tumor immunogenicity during breast tumorigenesis.

  • 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.

  • 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.