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Duke Predoctoral Student Receives Environmental Health Scholars Award

Friday, March 23, 2018
Risa Gearhart-Serna, a predoctoral student in the lab of Gayathri Devi, PhD

Risa Gearhart-Serna, a predoctoral student in the lab of Gayathri Devi, PhD, Associate Professor in Surgical Sciences, has been selected to receive the Duke Environmental Health Scholars (EHS) award for her project "Identifying Aggressive Breast Cancer Outcome Correlations with Environmental Contaminant Exposure: A Geospatial Analysis Project Using North Carolina as a Model."

Although there is evidence that environmental factors, such as endocrine disrupting chemical exposure, impact cancer incidence, the mechanistic insights surrounding their effect on aggressive disease progression is largely unknown. As part of her training in the Department of Pathology and the University Program in Environmental Health (UPEH), Risa's studies will include key collaborations with Kate Hoffman, PhD, in the Nicholas School of the Environment and Rachel Adams Greenup, MD, in the Surgery Outcomes group toward developing multiscale preclinical models that can be integrated with geospatial analysis of breast cancer outcomes and the environmental factors associated in North Carolina.

We look forward to her new collaborative project to potentially improve breast cancer patient care and outcomes.