Bernstein, professor and director of the Department of Cancer Etiology and dean for Faculty Development at City of Hope in Duarte, California, is being honoured for her distinguished research career in cancer epidemiology and prevention, spanning nearly 25 years of discovery. She is internationally recognized as a preeminent researcher and scholar whose work has vast implications on the quality of life of cancer survivors.
Bernstein’s early work examined the effects of exercise and body weight on the onset of puberty and hormonal patterns during adolescence. This research challenged the paradigm that epidemiologic risk factors for breast cancer were largely unmodifiable; demonstrated that physical activity can directly decrease breast cancer risk; and laid the foundation for subsequent epidemiologic studies and clinical trials focused on understanding the joint contributions of physical activity, weight and associated biologic mechanisms to the etiology of breast cancer.
In later research, Bernstein identified ethnicity-related variations and determinants of poor prognosis in breast cancer patients. Bernstein is also a pioneer in the development and use of epidemiologic methods for evaluating the long-term side effects of cancer treatment in cancer survivors. Using a multi-centre population-based setting she substantiated the association between tamoxifen use and risk of subsequent endometrial cancer in women and demonstrated for the first time that this association is potentially restricted to women who had previously used unopposed oestrogen therapy or who were obese at the time of their breast cancer diagnosis.
MEDICA.de; Source: American Association for Cancer Research