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Our Researchers

Director

Dr. Philip Lupo is a genetic epidemiologist with a focus on susceptibility to childhood cancer and congenital conditions. He is the Chair of the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) Epidemiology Committee and has served in various capacities in the National Birth Defects Prevention Network (NBDPN), including President and Chair of the Data Committee.

The ultimate goal of Dr. Lupo’s research is to discover factors that can be used in new prevention efforts and targeted interventions to limit the adverse consequences of pediatric diseases.

Phone
713-798-2960

Hematology/Oncology

Austin Brown is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine and Co-Director of the Long-term Survivor Research Program at Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Center. He leads a research program focused on characterizing the acute and long-term adverse effects of pediatric cancer therapy.

Phone
713-798-6634

Thanh Hoang is a member of the Epidemiology and Population Sciences Program at Texas Children's Cancer and Hematology Center. Her research sits at the intersection between environmental health and molecular biology – with a direct application to pediatric populations.

Dr. Kala Kamdar's principal research interest is in the prevention of long-term complications of childhood cancer therapies. Due to the need for cancer therapies at a young age, adult survivors of childhood cancer face unique long-term health problems, including neurocognitive impairment and learning difficulties.

Phone
832-824-4163

Dr. Lubega's research interests focus on the mechanisms of malignant transformation of immune cells by infections (EBV, Herpes Viruses, HIV, Malaria, etc) and other immunological alterations that may result in lymphoma, histiocytosis and possibly leukemia. He is a zealous advocate for building capacity for pediatric cancer care and research in Africa.

Phone
832-822-4242

Dr. Philip Lupo is a genetic epidemiologist with a focus on susceptibility to childhood cancer and congenital conditions. He is the Chair of the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) Epidemiology Committee and has served in various capacities in the National Birth Defects Prevention Network (NBDPN), including President and Chair of the Data Committee.

The ultimate goal of Dr. Lupo’s research is to discover factors that can be used in new prevention efforts and targeted interventions to limit the adverse consequences of pediatric diseases.

Phone
713-798-2960

While over 80% of children with cancer in high-income settings such as the United States survive their cancer, <10% of children in the world’s poorest countries will survive. Besides seeing patients, Dr. McAtee uses grant funding to conduct clinical and epidemiological research on cancers affecting children in these parts of the world. He specifically focuses on HIV-related malignancies and leukemias.

Phone
832-822-4242

Jane Montealegre is a Behavioral Epidemiologist with research expertise in health disparities and preventive healthcare utilization among immigrants, racial/ethnic minorities, and the medically underserved.

She is particularly interested in the intersection of nativity, race/ethnicity, and cervical cancer. Much of her work focuses on the design, implementation, and evaluation of behavioral and health system interventions to address cancer health disparities among the medically underserved.

Phone
713-798-2296

Dr. Fatih Okcu has ongoing studies include late effects after proton radiation therapy in brain tumor patients, reasons for lack of adherence to follow up care in survivors and relationship between genetic polymorphisms and late permanent treatment effects in childhood cancer survivors.

Research Interests

  • Molecular cancer epidemiology
  • Genetic polymorphisms that modify therapy modalities
  • Adverse events secondary to treatment
  • Neurocognitive impairments in childhood long-term survivors
Phone
832-822-4242

Erin Peckham-Gregory's primary research focus is to elucidate inherited genetic factors underlying susceptibility to pediatric lymphoproliferative and hematologic malignancies, with particular emphasis on Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis (LCH).

She is interested in how inherited genetic and epigenetic factors contribute to the development of pediatric lymphoproliferative malignancies, and am dedicated to a research career focused on the molecular epidemiology of these disorders.

Phone
713-798-5643

Dr. Melissa Richard is a genetic epidemiologist with a focus on using integrative, modern genetic-based approaches to uncover the molecular basis of disease. 

She has a particular focus on using multi-omic measures to characterize cardiometabolic traits as both a cause and consequence of health outcomes.

Her current work uses genetic epidemiologic techniques to uncover the molecular basis of disrupted metabolism in survivors of childhood cancer, as well as the influence of metabolic traits on human development.

Phone
713-798-2971

Dr. Michael Scheurer is a molecular epidemiologist at Texas Children’s Cancer Center and in the Cancer Prevention and Population Sciences Program of the Dan L. Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center at Baylor College of Medicine.

Dr. Scheurer’s research focuses on viruses and immune function as risk factors for cancer development and progression.

Phone
713-798-5547

Dr. Jeremy Schraw is a molecular epidemiologist whose research interests include structural birth defects and childhood cancer. He uses large-scale, population-based registry data and genomics to identify risk factors for these phenotypes and to understand the basis for their co-occurrence. He has a background in nutritional epidemiology, and is also interested in how diet and body composition affect cancer risk and outcomes.

Phone
713-798-2924

Dr. Zobeck's research is focused on using data science to improve healthcare delivery for children with cancer and blood disorders in resource-constrained settings. He also conducts clinical epidemiology research to predict cancer treatment toxicities. In 2022, he received a Young Investigator Award from the International Society of Pediatric Oncology for this work.

Dr. Zobeck has received research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation for Childhood Cancer, and the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO). 

Phone
832-822-4242

Clinical Research Manager

Director, Molecular Epidemiology Laboratory

Fellows and Trainees

The field of pediatric hematology-oncology offers much opportunity to support patients and their families and perhaps more importantly, the opportunity to make a difference through research and new discoveries. During his fellowship, he was frequently asked by families what triggered cancer to develop in their child. As a result, he became interested in in environmental exposures (e.g., toxicants) on the development of pediatric cancers.

Phone
832-822-4242