As a trained physician and epidemiologist with concentration in chronic disease epidemiology, one major research interest is to study the relationship between dietary and lifestyle factors and risk of cancers, particularly prostate cancer, breast cancer, colorectal cancer and colorectal adenoma (polyp). In the Health Professionals’ Follow-up Study and the Nurses’ Health Study I and II cohorts, I have studied the relationship between numerous dietary factors such as calcium, nutrients related to one carbon metabolism (e.g., the B-vitamins folate, B6 and B12), nutrients with antioxidant activity (e.g. vitamins E, C, carotenoids) and other nutrients with anti-carcinogenic activity primarily found in fruits and vegetables (e.g. flavonoids) and risk of cancers and adenomas.
A major focus of my current research is to examine the relation between exposures during early stages of a life cycle, including childhood and adolescence and risk of colorectal adenoma and cancers later in life.
As a member of the molecular pathology epidemiology research group led by Dr. Shuji Ogino at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, I am also conducting studies that investigate whether associations between risk factors for colorectal neoplasia differ by molecular subtypes.