Karin B. Michels, ScD, PhD
Principal Investigator (project leader)
Chair, Department of Epidemiology, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, Los Angeles, CA

Dr. Michels is a pioneer in identifying early life risk factors for breast cancer. Her research focuses on epigenetic epidemiology, perinatal risk factors for breast cancer, the role of nutrition in cancer etiology, and the influence of endocrine-disrupting chemicals on human health.  Prior to her appointment at UCLA, Dr. Michels was an associate professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Biology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA. Dr. Michels received her doctorate in epidemiology from Harvard University and her doctorate in Biostatistics from Cambridge University.

Julia Brody, PhD
Principal Investigator (community outreach)
Executive Director, Silent Spring Institute, Newton, MA

Dr. Brody leads Silent Spring Institute’s program on community-engaged research on breast cancer and the environment. Her current research focuses on ethical and effective practices for reporting personal chemical exposures back to study participants. Her research on mammary carcinogens has been cited as foundational by the President’s Cancer Panel, the Institute of Medicine and the federal interagency (IBCERCC) report on breast cancer and the environment. Dr. Brody is an adjunct assistant professor at Brown University School of Medicine. She earned her PhD at the University of Texas at Austin.

Camila Corvalan, MD, PhD
Principal Investigator (human study)

Associate Professor, Institute of Nutrition and Food Technology, University of Chile, Santiago, Chile

Dr. Corvalan’s research focuses on the early life nutritional influences of growth and development from a population perspective and the translation of these findings into new policies and programs. She currently leads the Center for Obesity Prevention in the Public Health Unit of the Institute of Nutrition and Food Technology (INTA) at the University of Chile. Dr. Corvalan received her MD and master of public health from the University of Chile, and a PhD in  international nutrition from Emory University.

Jose Russo, MD, PhD
Principal Investigator (animal study)
Director, Irma H. Russo MD Breast Cancer Research Laboratory
Director, Breast Cancer and the Environmental Research Center
Fox Chase Cancer Center, Temple University Health System, Philadelphia, PA

As director of the Breast Cancer Research Laboratory, Dr. Russo has devoted his career to understanding the cellular and molecular basis of breast cancer—the mechanisms that control susceptibility to breast cancer, different markers of susceptibility, and strategies for breast cancer prevention. He has authored more than 400 publications and 13 books. He is member of several editorial boards of scientific journals and has trained 55 PhD and MD investigators in cancer research.

Julia Santucci-Pereira, PhD
Co-investigator (animal study)
Research Associate, Irma H. Russo MD Breast Cancer Research Laboratory
Fox Chase Cancer Center, Temple University Health System, Philadelphia, PA

Dr. Santucci-Pereira’s research focuses on the effects of environmental contaminants on the development of the mammary gland and its susceptibility to breast cancer. She completed her doctoral thesis “2,3,7,8 tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) effect on global gene expression of the rat mammary gland during development” at the Universidade Federal de Sao Paulo (UNIFESP), Brazil, in collaboration with researchers at Fox Chase Cancer Center. Dr. Santucci-Pereira is currently pursuing a master degree in Bioinformatics at Temple University.

Ruthann Rudel, MS
Co-investigator (toxicology and exposure measurement)
Director of Research, Silent Spring Institute, Newton, MA

Ruthann Rudel leads Silent Spring’s exposure and toxicology research programs focusing on hormonally-active chemicals and the biological mechanisms by which chemicals may influence breast cancer. Her innovations in “breast cancer toxicology” include major peer-reviewed articles that identify chemicals that cause breast tumors or alter breast development in animal models. She also leads a program to develop breast cancer-relevant chemical safety tests. Rudel is currently serving on a National Academy of Sciences panel on low-dose effects of endocrine disruptors and is an adjunct Research Associate in the Brown University School of Medicine.

John Shepherd, PhD
Co-investigator (breast density assessments)
Associate Adjunct Professor, Department of Radiology
Director of the Breast and Bone Density Imaging Group
University of California, San Francisco Medical Center, San Francisco, CA

Dr. Shepherd is an expert in breast imaging, breast density, as well as musculoskeletal imaging. He specializes in quantitative imaging methods for tissue composition using x-rays and dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA). His mammographic methods are used extensively for research around the world and in the San Francisco Mammography Registry Program. Dr. Shepherd received his PhD in Engineering Physics from the University of Virginia, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship in Biophysics from Princeton University.