Julie R. Palmer, ScD, MPH
Karin Grunebaum Cancer Research Professor
Boston University Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine
Medicine
Hematology & Medical Oncology

ScD, Harvard University
MPH, Boston University
BS, Boston University
BA, Brown University

Pronouns: she/her/hers



Dr. Palmer is a cancer epidemiologist based at the Slone Epidemiology Center, with research projects spanning cancer early detection, etiology, and survivorship. Her primary focus is on elucidating reasons for the disproportionately high incidence of hormone receptor negative breast cancer in African American women and on understanding and reducing racial disparities in breast cancer mortality. She is a founding leader of the Black Women’s Health Study (BWHS), a prospective cohort study of 59,000 African American women who enrolled in 1995 and have been followed by biennial questionnaire since that time. Her breast cancer research within the BWHS includes work on risk prediction models for breast cancer in African American women, identifying differences in childbearing patterns as a contributing cause to the excess incidence of estrogen receptor negative breast cancer in African American women, and investigating the interrelationships of type 2 diabetes, obesity, and inflammation on breast cancer risk. Her current grants support work on somatic mutations, epigenetics, and gene expressions profiles in breast cancer tumors from African American women, setting the stage for a better understanding of the role of epidemiologic and genetic factors in etiology and prognosis. Dr. Palmer has served on many NIH and external advisory committees, including as Chair of the NIH Cancer, Cardiovascular, and Sleep Epidemiology Study Section, 2015-2017, and Co-Chair of a Working Group for the National Cancer Advisory Board, NCI, 2018-2019.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility

Diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice have been a high priority for me throughout my career. I came of age during the early years of the Black Power movement, the second wave of the Women's Liberation movement, and the Gay Liberation movement. The terms "white privilege", "male privilege", "heterosexual privilege", and "class privilege" have been part of my lexicon since before I even began my graduate education. My choice of research topics as an epidemiologist has been informed by my desire to 1) conduct research in populations that have traditionally been ignored - specifically for my research, women and Black Americans, and 2) to address research questions that may lead to prevention of disease by considering social and political conditions rather individual behaviors only. To this end, I have devoted most of my research time since the early 1990's to creating and co-leading the Black Women's Health Study, a prospective cohort study of 59,000 U.S. Black women who enrolled in 1995 and have been followed by biennial questionnaires. In addition to prioritizing research questions as described above, I am committed to assisting in creating opportunities for Black investigators, and in particular Black women scientists, to develop successful careers. I do this first by recruiting and mentoring graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and junior faculty, and second by providing opportunities for Black investigators from other institutions to strengthen their careers by using Black Women's Health Study data to address their own hypotheses. It is not just that no one has all the answers; no one has all the questions. One of the most important things I have learned through years of working with a diverse group of investigators is to listen, to do my part in allowing there to be a space for all ideas to be heard. I am dedicated to welcoming and celebrating individuals of all races, ethnicities, social backgrounds, sexual orientation, gender, sex, age, ability, religion, and national origin.

Professor
Boston University School of Public Health
Epidemiology


Director
Boston University Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine
Slone Epidemiology Center


Co-Director
Boston University
BU-BMC Cancer Center


Member
Boston University
Evans Center for Interdisciplinary Biomedical Research


Member
Boston University
Genome Science Institute




A Follow-up Study for Causes of Cancer in Black Women
09/01/2022 - 08/31/2027 (Multi-PI)
PI: Julie R. Palmer, ScD, MPH
NIH/National Cancer Institute
5U01CA164974-13

Evaluating the Feasibility of Lung Cancer Screening in High-risk Black Women
08/01/2023 - 07/31/2026 (Subcontract PI)
Massachusetts General Hospital HHS AHRQ
1R18HS029430-01

American Cancer Society Institutional Research Grant
01/01/2023 - 12/31/2025 (PI)
American Cancer Society, Inc.


Psychosocial stress and molecular profiles of breast tumors from U.S. Black women
10/26/2022 - 10/25/2025 (PI)
Susan G. Komen for the Cure


Somatic Mutations and Their Etiological Determinants for Breast Cancer in African American Women
02/01/2019 - 01/31/2025 (Multi-PI)
PI: Julie R. Palmer, ScD, MPH
Health Research, Inc. NIH NCI
5R01CA228156-05

Testing scalable communication modalities for returning breast cancer genetic research results to African American women
06/12/2020 - 11/30/2024 (Multi-PI)
PI: Julie R. Palmer, ScD, MPH
NIH/National Inst on Minority Health and Health Disparities
5R01MD014312-04

Breast Cancer Drivers in Black Women: Society to Cells
11/01/2023 - 10/31/2024 (PI)
Breast Cancer Research Foundation


Neighborhood Disadvantage, Tumor Characteristics, and Breast Cancer Survival in U.S. Black Women
09/14/2023 - 09/13/2024 (PI)
Susan G. Komen for the Cure


Improving Breast Cancer Risk Prediction for African American Women: Consideration of Estrogen Receptor Subtype-Specific Risk Factors
01/08/2019 - 12/31/2023 (PI)
NIH/National Cancer Institute
5R01CA228357-05

Relationships between parity, breastfeeding and ER- breast cancer in African American women: elucidating the biologic underpinnings at the molecular and cellular level
12/04/2018 - 11/30/2023 (Multi-PI)
PI: Julie R. Palmer, ScD, MPH
Health Research, Inc. NIH NCI
5R01CA225947-03

Showing 10 of 29 results. Show All Results


Title


Yr Title Project-Sub Proj Pubs
2024 Testing scalable communication modalities for returning breast cancer genetic research results to African American women 5R01MD014312-04
2023 Evaluating the Feasibility of Lung Cancer Screening in High-Risk Black Women 1R18HS029430-01
2023 Somatic Mutations and Their Etiological Determinants for Breast Cancer in African American Women 5R01CA228156-05
2023 Improving Breast Cancer Risk Prediction for African American Women: Consideration of Estrogen Receptor Subtype-Specific Risk Factors 5R01CA228357-05
2023 Relationships between parity, breastfeeding and ER- breast cancer in African American women: Elucidating the biologic underpinnings at the molecular and cellular level. 5R01CA225947-05
2023 A Follow-up Study for Causes of Cancer in Black Women 5U01CA164974-13
2022 Testing scalable communication modalities for returning breast cancer genetic research results to African American women 5R01MD014312-03
2022 Somatic Mutations and Their Etiological Determinants for Breast Cancer in African American Women 5R01CA228156-04
2022 Improving Breast Cancer Risk Prediction for African American Women: Consideration of Estrogen Receptor Subtype-Specific Risk Factors 5R01CA228357-04
2022 Relationships between parity, breastfeeding and ER- breast cancer in African American women: Elucidating the biologic underpinnings at the molecular and cellular level. 5R01CA225947-04
Showing 10 of 82 results. Show All Results

Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

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  1. Habeshian TS, Peeri NC, De Vivo I, Schouten LJ, Shu XO, Cote ML, Bertrand KA, Chen Y, Clarke MA, Clendenen TV, Cook LS, Costas L, Dal Maso L, Freudenheim JL, Friedenreich CM, Gallagher G, Gierach GL, Goodman MT, Jordan SJ, La Vecchia C, Lacey JV, Levi F, Liao LM, Lipworth L, Lu L, Matias-Guiu X, Moysich KB, Mutter GL, Na R, Naduparambil J, Negri E, O'Connell K, O'Mara TA, Onieva Hernández I, Palmer JR, Parazzini F, Patel AV, Penney KL, Prizment AE, Ricceri F, Risch HA, Sacerdote C, Sandin S, Stolzenberg-Solomon RZ, van den Brandt PA, Webb PM, Wentzensen N, Wijayabahu AT, Wilkens LR, Xu W, Yu H, Zeleniuch-Jacquotte A, Zheng W, Du M, Setiawan VW. Hypertension and Risk of Endometrial Cancer: A Pooled Analysis in the Epidemiology of Endometrial Cancer Consortium (E2C2). Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2024 Jun 03; 33(6):788-795.View Related Profiles. PMID: 38530242; PMCID: PMC11145161; DOI: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-23-1444;
     
  2. Potter AL, Xu NN, Senthil P, Srinivasan D, Lee H, Gazelle GS, Chelala L, Zheng W, Fintelmann FJ, Sequist LV, Donington J, Palmer JR, Yang CJ. Pack-Year Smoking History: An Inadequate and Biased Measure to Determine Lung Cancer Screening Eligibility. J Clin Oncol. 2024 Jun 10; 42(17):2026-2037. PMID: 38537159
     
  3. Von Holle A, Adami HO, Baglietto L, Berrington de Gonzalez A, Bertrand KA, Blot W, Chen Y, DeHart JC, Dossus L, Eliassen AH, Fournier A, Garcia-Closas M, Giles G, Guevara M, Hankinson SE, Heath A, Jones ME, Joshu CE, Kaaks R, Kirsh VA, Kitahara CM, Koh WP, Linet MS, Park HL, Masala G, Mellemkjaer L, Milne RL, O'Brien KM, Palmer JR, Riboli E, Rohan TE, Shrubsole MJ, Sund M, Tamimi R, Tin Tin S, Visvanathan K, Vermeulen RC, Weiderpass E, Willett WC, Yuan JM, Zeleniuch-Jacquotte A, Nichols HB, Sandler DP, Swerdlow AJ, Schoemaker MJ, Weinberg CR. BMI and breast cancer risk around age at menopause. Cancer Epidemiol. 2024 Apr; 89:102545.View Related Profiles. PMID: 38377945; PMCID: PMC10942753; DOI: 10.1016/j.canep.2024.102545;
     
  4. Ruiz-Narváez EA, Cozier Y, Zirpoli G, Rosenberg L, Palmer JR. Perceived Experiences of racism in Relation to Genome-Wide DNA Methylation and Epigenetic Aging in the Black Women's Health Study. J Racial Ethn Health Disparities. 2024 Feb 07.View Related Profiles. PMID: 38324238
     
  5. Sheehy S, Brock M, Palmer JR, Albert MA, Cozier YC, Rosenberg L. Perceived Interpersonal Racism in Relation to Incident Coronary Heart Disease Among Black Women. Circulation. 2024 Feb 13; 149(7):521-528.View Related Profiles. PMID: 38235551; PMCID: PMC10926238; DOI: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.123.066471;
     
  6. Kataria Y, Niharika Pillalamarri B, Zirpoli G, Szalat R, Palmer JR, Bertrand KA. Body size and risk of multiple myeloma in the Black Women's Health Study. Br J Cancer. 2024 Mar; 130(5):830-835.View Related Profiles. PMID: 38212484; PMCID: PMC10912597; DOI: 10.1038/s41416-023-02571-w;
     
  7. Wolfson EA, Schonberg MA, Eliassen AH, Bertrand KA, Shvetsov YB, Rosner BA, Palmer JR, LaCroix AZ, Chlebowski RT, Nelson RA, Ngo LH. Validating a model for predicting breast cancer and nonbreast cancer death in women aged 55 years and older. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2024 Jan 10; 116(1):81-96.View Related Profiles. PMID: 37676833; PMCID: PMC10777669; DOI: 10.1093/jnci/djad188;
     
  8. Zirpoli GR, Pfeiffer RM, Bertrand KA, Huo D, Lunetta KL, Palmer JR. Addition of polygenic risk score to a risk calculator for prediction of breast cancer in US Black women. Breast Cancer Res. 2024 Jan 02; 26(1):2.View Related Profiles. PMID: 38167144; PMCID: PMC10763003; DOI: 10.1186/s13058-023-01748-8;
     
  9. Barnard ME, Wang X, Petrick JL, Zirpoli GR, Jones D, Johnson WE, Palmer JR. Psychosocial stressors and breast cancer gene expression in the Black Women's Health Study. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2024 Apr; 204(2):327-340.View Related Profiles. PMID: 38127176
     
  10. Timmins IR, Jones ME, O'Brien KM, Adami HO, Aune D, Baglietto L, Bertrand KA, Brantley KD, Chen Y, Clague DeHart J, Clendenen TV, Dossus L, Eliassen AH, Fletcher O, Fournier A, Håkansson N, Hankinson SE, Houlston RS, Joshu CE, Kirsh VA, Kitahara CM, Koh WP, Linet MS, Park HL, Lynch BM, May AM, Mellemkjær L, Milne RL, Palmer JR, Ricceri F, Rohan TE, Ruddy KJ, Sánchez MJ, Shu XO, Smith-Byrne K, Steindorf K, Sund M, Vachon CM, Vatten LJ, Visvanathan K, Weiderpass E, Willett WC, Wolk A, Yuan JM, Zheng W, Nichols HB, Sandler DP, Swerdlow AJ, Schoemaker MJ. International Pooled Analysis of Leisure-Time Physical Activity and Premenopausal Breast Cancer in Women From 19 Cohorts. J Clin Oncol. 2024 Mar 10; 42(8):927-939.View Related Profiles. PMID: 38079601; PMCID: PMC10927335; DOI: 10.1200/JCO.23.01101;
     
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