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Discovering the causes of cancer and the means of prevention
 

Jongeun Rhee, Sc.D., M.S., joined the Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology Branch (OEEB) in September 2019 as a postdoctoral fellow, and was appointed as a research fellow in June 2021. Dr. Rhee completed her Sc.D. in environmental health with a concentration in environmental, occupational, and molecular epidemiology from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston, Massachusetts. For her dissertation research, she investigated associations between air pollution, industry, and socioeconomic status and acute respiratory distress syndrome among older adults in the United States. Dr. Rhee also has a longstanding interest in health disparities research and has led investigations on how prenatal air pollution and homelessness during pregnancy are associated with birthweight in a low-income multi-ethnic community.

In OEEB, Dr. Rhee is working on projects investigating cancer risks associated with diverse environmental exposures including chlorinated solvents, persistent organic pollutants, and air pollution, as well as molecular epidemiologic studies of kidney cancer and non-Hodgkin lymphoma etiology, under the mentorship of Mark Purdue, Ph.D., senior investigator. Dr. Rhee is a co-founder and co-chair of the DCEG Fellows’ Cancer Health Disparities Interest Group and a member of the DCEG Cancer Health Disparities Working Group.

In 2022, Dr. Rhee and colleague Charles Breeze, Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow in OEEB, received the DCEG Cancer Health Disparities Research Award for their proposal of renal cell carcinoma study. Dr. Rhee also received DCEG Intramural Research Awards, NCI Director’s Intramural Innovation Award, and co-received the NIH Pamela Anne Cafritz Renal Cell Carcinoma Award with Jonathan Hofmann, Ph.D., M.P.H., senior investigator in OEEB.