Dr. Orlow directs the Molecular Epidemiology Laboratory. Her research interests include the study of host and tumor genetics, phenotypic characteristics, and exposures that modulate cancer prognosis in patients with melanoma, breast, lung and bladder cancer. In the area of melanoma, since the year 2000 she is a member of the international Genes, Environment, and Melanoma (GEM) Study group, and in more recent years of the InterMEL Consortium. Among others, studies within GEM include research on the vitamin D receptor and chemokine/chemokine receptor polymorphisms, and their role as modifiers of patients’ survival. She collaborates with members of the Dermatology Service to evaluate the effect of genetics, phenotypic characteristics, and exposures to further the knowledge of the biology and epidemiology of nevi —a known risk factor for melanoma, and the underlying genetic risk factors for chemotherapy-induced persistent alopecia. With Drs. Tim Ahles and James Root, she is assessing the impact of host genetics and other biomarkers on neurocognitive function in patients with breast cancer. With Dr. Jun Mao, she is assessing phenotypic and genetic biomarkers linked to the efficacy of interventions in cancer patients. With her lab, Dr. Orlow supports additional multidisciplinary investigations in the areas of cancer etiology, prognosis and survivorship. Her laboratory handles biospecimen collections for large epidemiologic studies including, among others, biospecimens from breast, colorectal, pancreatic, and endometrial cancer, as well as melanoma patients. She supports an institution-wide genetic study of CoV-2/COVID-19.
Doctors and faculty members often work with pharmaceutical, device, biotechnology, and life sciences companies, and other organizations outside of MSK, to find safe and effective cancer treatments, to improve patient care, and to educate the health care community.
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Irene Orlow discloses the following relationships and financial interests:
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