Cancer and Aging

Unraveling the mysteries of aging to prevent cancer and help cancer survivors live longer and healthier

The Cancer and Aging Division of the GUMC Center for Healthy Aging is part of the Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Institute for Cancer and Aging Research (GLICA).

The mission of GLICA is to conduct transdisciplinary research to address challenges in our diverse aging society and train a new generation of researchers focused on achieving health equity for cancer patients and their families.

Division Director

Jeanne Mandelblatt

Cancer and Aging, Geriatrics, Survivorship, Policy, Cancer Disparities. Dr. Mandelblatt’s research focuses on heterogeneity in life course aging and the effects of cancer and its treatments on clinically important survivorship outcomes, including functional, cognitive, and physical aging and development of frailty. Mandelblatt Lab Website

Participating Faculty

Lucile Adams-Campbell

Cancer Health Disparities, Cancer Prevention and Control, Epidemiology, Global Oncology. Dr. Lucile Adams-Campbell’s research focuses on minority aging over the life course and how aging and cancer interact to affect cancer disparities and the health of older minority cancer survivors. Adams-Campbell Lab Website

Jaeil Ahn

Bioinformatics, Biostatistics, Genetic Epidemiology, Glycoscience.Dr. Ahn’s research explores cognitive aging of breast cancer survivors, clinical trials and machine learning to evaluate aging outcomes. Ahn Lab Website

Hannah Arem

Implementation Science, Behavioral Interventions, Cancer Disparities, Social Determinants of Health. Dr. Arem’s research focuses on testing dissemination and implementation of interventions to improve care for older adults and the intersection of aging, disparities, and cancer on improving patient reported outcomes. Arem Lab Website

Traci Bethea

Health Disparities, Cancer Prevention and Control.Dr. Bethea’s research focuses on environmental stressors underlying cancer health disparities and. Minority aging, and how sleep interventions can improve outcomes. Bethea Lab Website

Jan Blancato

Breast Cancer, Neurology and CNS Cancer.Dr. Blancato’s research interests include neurodegenerative diseases of aging, biomarkers in breast cancer and discovering pathogenic genomic variants in different diseases. Blancato Lab Website

Chiranjeev Dash

Cancer Biomarkers, Cancer Disparities, Epidemiology, Training. Dr. Dash’s research primarily focuses on molecular epidemiology and cancer prevention and control in minorities and underserved populations. Dash Lab Website

Tamar Demby

Neurosciences, Clinical Translation of Animal Model Experiments, Cancer and Aging.Dr. Demby’s research interests are to use animal models to inform clinical care at the intersection of aging and cancer and advance understanding of mechanisms that can be leveraged to improve quality of life.

Heather Derry-Vick

Biobehavioral Research, Quality of Life. Dr. Derry-Vick examines how psychosocial factors interact with health conditions to impact health and healthcare experiences and how physiological mechanisms raise risk for cancer and co-occurring health problems. Derry-Vick Lab Website

Priscilla Furth

Breast Cancer, Cancer Genetics, Cancer Survivorship, Faculty Development.Dr. Furth’s research focuses on breast cancer pathophysiology with applicability to aging, and has recently expanded to include research on the impact of physical activity on aging within cancer survivorship. Furth Lab Website

Radoslav Goldman

Glycoscience and Glycoproteins, Translational Cancer Research, Head and Neck Cancer (HNSCC), Liver Fibrosis, Hepatocellular Carcinoma. Dr. Goldman explores the impact of glycoscience on human pathophysiology, and how glycosylation affects aging processes and cancer outcomes. Goldman Lab Website

Carole Gresenz

Health Economics, Labor Economics. Dr. Gresenz’s research examines how Alzheimer’s Disease affects the financial well-being of individuals and families during its early stages, the effects of aggressive versus conservative treatment of low-risk prostate cancer on mortality, and adverse side effects and episode treatment costs after controlling non-random selection into treatment. Gresenz Lab Website

Pamela Herd

Health Policy, Aging, Disparities. Dr. Herd’s research focuses on inequality and how it intersects with health, aging, and policy. Herd Lab Website

Sean Huang

Health Economics, Healthcare Finance, Healthcare Markets, Long-Term Care. Dr. Huang’s research focuses on the management and regulation of health care providers, including hospitals, nursing homes, and home health agencies, as well as financial issues in cancer and aging. Huang Lab Website

Alejandra Hurtado de Mendoza

Cancer Disparities, Translational Genomics, Qualitative Research, Behavioral Interventions, Cancer Health Disparities. Dr. Hurtado de Mendoza’s work focuses on developing culturally targeted interventions to reduce cancer disparities in at-risk Latina and African American women, including older minority women.  Hurtado de Mendoza Lab Website

Jinani Jayasekera

Health Services Research, Simulation Modeling, Cancer Health Disparities, Health Economics, Clinical Decision Tools.Dr. Jayasekera has led several collaborative simulation modeling projects focused on cancer disparities, health policy, and personalized care based on age and health, and is focusing on developing a simulation model to address knowledge gaps in the use of genomic-guided treatment in older women. Jayasekera Lab Website

Peter McGarvey

Molecular Biology, Biotechnology, Bioinformatics, Software Development. Dr. McGarvey assists Scholars interested in using electronic health record data, obtaining training to use artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques in aging research and working with other large data. McGarvey Lab Website

Caleb McKinney

Outreach, Artificial Intelligence. Dr. McKinney manages outreach and workforce development initiatives, including use of electronic health records for disparities research and training diverse scientists to use artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques in their research. McKinney Lab Website

Arnold Potosky

Cancer Survivorship, Health Services Research, Clinical Epidemiology.Dr. Potosky conducts health services research describing the impact of cancer treatments on symptoms, function and quality of life, and uses this experience to study delivery of care to older minority survivors. Potosky Lab Website

G. William Rebeck

Alzheimer’s Disease, Apolipoprotein E, Chemotherapy-induced Cognitive Impairment. The Rebeck lab focuses on the effects of APOE genotype in Alzheimer’s disease and links to cognitive aging after cancer therapy. Rebeck Lab Website

Rebecca Riggins

Breast Cancer, Cancer Biology, Cell Signaling, Training, Orphan Nuclear Receptors. Dr. Riggins’ research focus lies in the study of cancer therapy efficacy and resistance using diverse cellular and molecular approaches, predominantly in hormone receptor-positive breast cancer and applying these methods to understand aging and mentorship training. Riggins Lab Website

Michelle Roett

Children and Family, Community Engagement, Faculty Development, Family Medicine, Health Disparities. Dr. Roett’s interests focus on implementation of integrated behavioral health and primary care, using innovative video feedback and standardized patient teaching modalities to improve doctor-patient communication and teaching community-oriented primary care. Roett Lab Website

Pamela Saunders

Linguistics, Medical Education, Aging. Dr. Saunders’ research focuses on language, aging, doctor/patient communication, narrative and reflective writing, and standardized patient education. Saunders Lab Website

Richard Schlegel

Aging, Cell Immortalization,Virology. Dr. Schlegel’s research focuses on papillomaviruses and their role in human cancer, and use of lab techniques to study cell aging, immortalization and HPV-related cancers. Schlegel Lab Website

Kenneth Tercyak

Behavioral Science, Pediatrics, Psychology, Childhood Cancer.Dr. Tercyak conducts survivorship research, social/behavioral epidemiology, and cancer prevention, and studying aging in childhood cancer survivors. Tercyak Lab Website

Jason Tilan

Aging,Physiology, Pediatric Cancers.Dr. Tilan studies the role of Neuropeptide Y on pediatric tumors and has also directed a required course in the Aging & Health Master’s program at Georgetown University, Biology of Health & Disease. Tilan Lab Website

Scott R. Turner

Alzheimer’s Disease, Predictive Biomarkers, Behavioral and Cognitive Neurology, Dementia. Dr. Turner leads clinical care and trials related to development and validation of novel biomarkers for prodromal AD, MCI, and AD; drug discovery for the treatment and prevention of MCI and AD; and interaction of geriatric HIV with AD. Turner Lab Website

Jason Umans

Cardiovascular Disease, Clinical Pharmacology, Environmental Toxicology, Health Disparities, Nephrology, Pathophysiology.Dr. Uman’s research spans several disciplines, including translational physiology and pharmacology, women’s health, chronic diseases in aging, and community-engaged studies on health disparities and leads mentorship training. Umans Lab Website

Randi Williams

Behavioral Science, Tobacco Control, Disparities.Dr. Williams is testing methods for smoking cessation in the lung screening setting and to address cancer disparities affecting African Americans. Williams Lab Website

Yun-Ling Zheng

Telomere Measurement, Cancer Epidemiology.Dr. Zheng studies the role of telomere health in aging and cancer and develops biomarkers for the identification of populations at high risk of developing cancer. Zheng Lab Website



Annual Lombardi Developmental Grant Program in Cancer and Aging


Cancer and Aging Special Interest Group Meetings: 

February 7, 2022: 3pm-4pm
April 4, 2022: 3pm-4pm
June 27, 2022: 3pm-4pm
October 24, 2022: 3pm-4pm

Cancer and Aging Speaker Series Meetings:

January 27, 2022: 4:00 pm

Judith Campisi, Ph.D.

Professor, Biogerontology

The Buck Institute for Research on Aging

March 11, 2022: 12:00 pm

Daniel Belsky, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Epidemiology

Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University

May 6, 2022: 12:00 pm

Judith Carroll, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences

UCLA Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior

Date TBD

Michelle Janelsins-Benton, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Cancer Control & Psychoneuroimmunology Laboratory

University of Rochester Medical Center