Current Research and Scholarly Interests
Genetic epidemiology: Identifying genes that increase susceptibility to cancer or are related to poor survival is a primary interest of Dr. Oakley-Girvan. She is part of the International Consortium for Prostate Cancer Genetics, a member in an international breast and ovarian cancer research group and part of a thyroid cancer alliance. Through these collaborative teams, which include a broad base of investigators from many institutions and genetic samples from many projects, Dr. Oakley-Girvan is able to focus on investigating genes that may increase a person's susceptibility to prostate, ovarian, thyroid and breast cancer. In addition, she aims to identify environmental factors that reduce an individual's risk of these cancers, as well as decrease their risk of cancer recurrence and improve their chance of survival.
Survivorship: Dr. Oakley-Girvan is also actively evaluating factors (patient reported, clinically reported and biomarkers such as telomeres) associated with cancer treatment choice, quality of care, treatment outcomes, quality of life and survivorship. With interests throughout the cancer survivorship continuum and an emphasis on understanding why there are disparities in survivor care, Dr. Oakley-Girvan is also focused on creating solutions, particularly ones that resonate with communities. She plans to follow her current studies with education and behavioral intervention projects that will effect meaningful change, improve the life of survivors and help eliminate, or, at the very least, reduce cancer health care disparities.
Mobile Health: Dr. Oakley-Girvan has recently completed a project with a community based clinical provider that evaluated the use of text messages to impact time to clinical resolution of abnormal mammograms. Results were positive and the next steps to expand to include easily scalable mobile health applications and digital therapeutics on a HIPAA compliant platform are underway.
Big Data on an Individual Level: In several collaborations with colleagues, Dr. Oakley-Girvan is facilitating the capture of multiple data streams that include biosensor data, biomarkers such as telomeres, cytokines and epigenetics, self-reported data, and comprehensive clinical data through electronic health records.