Sarah J. Nechuta, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Faculty Appointments
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Ph.D., Michigan State University, East Lansing, MichiganM.P.H., University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MichiganB.S., Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan
Office Address
2525 West End Avenue, Suite 800
Nashville, TN 37203-1738
Research Description
I am the PI of NIH funded studies in lifestyle factors and biomarkers in breast cancer survival since 2012. My research program focuses on environmental factors and biomarkers in chronic disease epidemiology, and in particular breast cancer epidemiology, health disparities, and women's health. After obtaining my PhD in 2009, I received postdoctoral training in nutritional and cancer epidemiology in the Division of Epidemiology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC), and joined the faculty in 2012. I have participated in several projects utilizing large-scale cohort and case-control studies at the VUMC (Shanghai Women's Health Study, Shanghai Breast Cancer Survival Study, Nashville Breast Health Study, and the Southern Community Cohort Study) and with other institutions (Nurses Health Study-Harvard University, Life After Cancer Epidemiology Study-Kaiser Permanente Northern California, Women's Healthy Eating & Living Study-University of California San Diego, DietCompLyf cohort study-University of Westminster in London). I received a K12 from the NIEHS in 2012. I received the NIH Loan Repayment Program for Clinical Research Award (2012-2014) and Renewal (2014-2015). Currently, I am PI of an NCI R03 and recently funded 5-year career development award from the NCI (DNA Repair Pathways and Triple Negative Breast Cancer Outcomes). I am utilizing breast cancer cases from the Southern Tri-State Breast Cancer case-control study, led by Drs Wei Zheng and Maureen Sanderson, to conduct a pilot cohort study of lifestyle and breast cancer survivorship in African-American women with over 230 women enrolled to date.
Research Keywords
Cancer Epidemiology, Cancer Survivorship, Health Disparities, Breast Cancer, Women's Health, Molecular Epidemiology
Nelson SH, Marinac CR, Patterson RE, Nechuta SJ, Flatt SW, Caan BJ, Kwan ML, Poole EM, Chen WY, Shu XO, Pierce JP. Impact of very low physical activity, BMI, and comorbidities on mortality among breast cancer survivors. Breast Cancer Res. Treat [print-electronic]. 2016 Feb; 155(3): 551-7. PMID: 26861056, PII: 10.1007/s10549-016-3694-2, DOI: 10.1007/s10549-016-3694-2, ISSN: 1573-7217.

Kroenke CH, Michael YL, Shu XO, Poole EM, Kwan ML, Nechuta S, Caan BJ, Pierce JP, Chen WY. Post-diagnosis social networks, and lifestyle and treatment factors in the After Breast Cancer Pooling Project. Psychooncology [print-electronic]. 2016 Jan 1/8/2016; PMID: 26749519, DOI: 10.1002/pon.4059, ISSN: 1099-1611.

Liu Y, Baglia M, Zheng Y, Blot W, Bao PP, Cai H, Nechuta S, Zheng W, Cai Q, Shu XO. ALDH1A1 mRNA expression in association with prognosis of triple-negative breast cancer. Oncotarget. 2015 Dec 12/1/2015; 6(38): 41360-9. PMID: 26462023, PII: 6023, DOI: 10.18632/oncotarget.6023, ISSN: 1949-2553.

Nechuta S, Chen WY, Cai H, Poole EM, Kwan ML, Flatt SW, Patterson RE, Pierce JP, Caan BJ, Shu XO. A pooled analysis of post-diagnosis lifestyle factors in association with late estrogen-receptor positive breast cancer prognosis. Int. J. Cancer [print-electronic]. 2015 Nov 11/25/2015; PMID: 26606746, DOI: 10.1002/ijc.29940, ISSN: 1097-0215.

Nechuta SJ, Shu XO, Yang G, Cai H, Gao YT, Li HL, Xiang YB, Zheng W. Adolescent exercise in association with mortality from all causes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer among middle-aged and older Chinese women. Cancer Epidemiol. Biomarkers Prev. 2015 Aug; 24(8): 1270-6. PMID: 26231350, PMCID: PMC4526431, PII: 1055-9965.EPI-15-0253, DOI: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-15-0253, ISSN: 1538-7755.

Sanderson M, Lipworth L, Shen-Miller D, Nechuta S, Beeghly-Fadiel A, Shrubsole MJ, Zheng W. Energy-Related Indicators and Breast Cancer Risk among White and Black Women. PLoS ONE. 2015; 10(4): e0125058. PMID: 25927530, PMCID: PMC4416034, PII: PONE-D-14-57079, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0125058, ISSN: 1932-6203.

Nechuta S, Cai Q, Zheng Y, Milne GL, Cai H, Dai Q, Yang G, Zheng W, Lu W, Shu XO. Urinary biomarkers of oxidative stress and breast cancer survival. Cancer Causes Control [print-electronic]. 2014 Jun; 25(6): 701-7. PMID: 24820618, PMCID: PMC4031460, DOI: 10.1007/s10552-014-0373-7, ISSN: 1573-7225.

Pierce JP, Patterson RE, Senger CM, Flatt SW, Caan BJ, Natarajan L, Nechuta SJ, Poole EM, Shu XO, Chen WY. Lifetime cigarette smoking and breast cancer prognosis in the After Breast Cancer Pooling Project. J. Natl. Cancer Inst [print-electronic]. 2014 Jan; 106(1): djt359. PMID: 24317179, PMCID: PMC3906992, PII: djt359, DOI: 10.1093/jnci/djt359, ISSN: 1460-2105.

Shi L, Nechuta S, Gao YT, Zheng Y, Dorjgochoo T, Wu J, Cai Q, Zheng W, Lu W, Shu XO. Correlates of 25-hydroxyvitamin D among Chinese breast cancer patients. PLoS ONE. 2014; 9(1): e86467. PMID: 24466109, PMCID: PMC3897707, PII: PONE-D-13-43622, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0086467, ISSN: 1932-6203.

Nechuta S, Caan BJ, Chen WY, Kwan ML, Lu W, Cai H, Poole EM, Flatt SW, Zheng W, Pierce JP, Shu XO. Postdiagnosis cruciferous vegetable consumption and breast cancer outcomes: a report from the After Breast Cancer Pooling Project. Cancer Epidemiol. Biomarkers Prev [print-electronic]. 2013 Aug; 22(8): 1451-6. PMID: 23765086, PMCID: PMC3732536, PII: 1055-9965.EPI-13-0446, DOI: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-13-0446, ISSN: 1538-7755.

Nechuta S, Lu W, Zheng Y, Cai H, Bao PP, Gu K, Zheng W, Shu XO. Comorbidities and breast cancer survival: a report from the Shanghai Breast Cancer Survival Study. Breast Cancer Res. Treat [print-electronic]. 2013 May; 139(1): 227-35. PMID: 23605082, PMCID: PMC3712758, DOI: 10.1007/s10549-013-2521-2, ISSN: 1573-7217.

Poole EM, Shu XO, Caan BJ, Flatt SW, Holmes MD, Lu W, Kwan ML, Nechuta SJ, Pierce JP, Chen WY. Post-diagnosis supplement use and breast cancer prognosis in the After Breast Cancer Pooling Project. 2013.

Bao PP, Zheng Y, Nechuta S, Gu Kai, Cai Hui, Peng P, Shu XO, Lu W. Exercise after diagnosis and Metabolic Syndrome among Breast Cancer Survivors: A report from the Shanghai Breast Cancer Survival Study. 2013.

Nechuta S, Shu XO, Li HL, Yang G, Ji BT, Xiang YB, Cai H, Chow WH, Gao YT, Zheng W. Prospective cohort study of tea consumption and risk of digestive system cancers: results from the Shanghai Women's Health Study. Am. J. Clin. Nutr [print-electronic]. 2012 Nov; 96(5): 1056-63. PMID: 23053557, PMCID: PMC3471195, PII: ajcn.111.031419, DOI: 10.3945/ajcn.111.031419, ISSN: 1938-3207.

Nechuta SJ, Caan BJ, Chen WY, Lu W, Chen Z, Kwan ML, Flatt SW, Zheng Y, Zheng W, Pierce JP, Shu XO. Soy food intake after diagnosis of breast cancer and survival: an in-depth analysis of combined evidence from cohort studies of US and Chinese women. Am. J. Clin. Nutr [print-electronic]. 2012 Jul; 96(1): 123-32. PMID: 22648714, PMCID: PMC3374736, PII: ajcn.112.035972, DOI: 10.3945/ajcn.112.035972, ISSN: 1938-3207.

Nechuta S, Mudd LM, Elliott MR, Lepkowski JM, Paneth N, . Attitudes of pregnant women towards collection of biological specimens during pregnancy and at birth. Paediatr Perinat Epidemiol [print-electronic]. 2012 May; 26(3): 272-5. PMID: 22471686, DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-3016.2012.01265.x, ISSN: 1365-3016.

Beasley JM, Kwan ML, Chen WY, Weltzien EK, Kroenke CH, Lu W, Nechuta SJ, Patterson RE, Sternfeld B, Shu XO, Pierce JP, Caan BJ. Meeting the Physical Activity Guidelines and Breast Cancer Survival: Findings from the After Breast Cancer Pooling Project. Breast Cancer Res. Treat. 2012; 131((2)): 637-43.

Kwan ML, Chen WY, Weltzien E, Beasley JM, Lu W, Nechuta SJ, Quesenberry CP, Pierce JP, Shu XO, Caan BJ. Pre-diagnosis Body Mass Index and Survival After Breast Cancer in the After Breast Cancer Pooling Project. Breast Cancer Res. Treat. 2012; 132((2)): 729-39.

Caan BJ, Kwan ML, Shu XO, Pierce JP, Patterson RE, Nechuta S, Poole EM, Kroenke C, Nechuta S, Weltzien EK, Flatt SW, Queensberry CP, Holmes MD, Chen WY. Weight Change and Survival after Breast Cancer: the After Breast Cancer Pooling Project. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2012; 21((8)): 1260-71.

Kwan ML, Chen WY, Flatt SW, Weltzien EK, Nechuta S, Poole EM, Holmes MD, Patterson RE, Xiao Ou Shu, Pierce JP, Caan BJ. Post-diagnosis alcohol consumption and breast cancer prognosis in the After Breast Cancer Pooling Project. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2012.

Nechuta SJ, Caan BJ, Chen WY, Flatt SW, Lu W, Patterson RE, Poole EM, Kwan ML, Chen Z, Weltzien E, Pierce JP, Shu XO. The After Breast Cancer Pooling Project: rationale, methodology, and breast cancer survivor characteristics. Cancer Causes Control [print-electronic]. 2011 Sep; 22(9): 1319-31. PMID: 21710192, PMCID: PMC3169084, DOI: 10.1007/s10552-011-9805-9, ISSN: 1573-7225.

Nechuta S, Lu W, Chen Z, Zheng Y, Gu K, Cai H, Zheng W, Shu XO. Vitamin supplement use during breast cancer treatment and survival: a prospective cohort study. Cancer Epidemiol. Biomarkers Prev [print-electronic]. 2011 Feb; 20(2): 262-71. PMID: 21177425, PMCID: PMC3057050, PII: 1055-9965.EPI-10-1072, DOI: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-10-1072, ISSN: 1538-7755.

Va P, Yang WS, Nechuta S, Chow WH, Cai H, Yang G, Gao S, Gao YT, Zheng W, Shu XO, Xiang YB. Marital status and mortality among middle age and elderly Chinese men and women in urban Shanghai. PLoS One. 2011; 11((6)): e26600.

Nechuta S, Paneth N, Pathak DR, Gardiner J, Copeland G, Velie EM. A population-based case-control study of fetal growth, gestational age, and maternal breast cancer. Am. J. Epidemiol [print-electronic]. 2010 Oct 10/15/2010; 172(8): 962-70. PMID: 20858745, PMCID: PMC2984246, PII: kwq263, DOI: 10.1093/aje/kwq263, ISSN: 1476-6256.

Nechuta SJ, Shu XO, Li HL, Yang G, Xiang YB, Cai H, Chow WH, Ji B, Zhang X, Wen W, Gao YT, Zheng W. Combined impact of lifestyle-related factors on total and cause-specific mortality among Chinese women: prospective cohort study. PLoS Med. 2010 Sep; 7(9): PMID: 20856900, PMCID: PMC2939020, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1000339, ISSN: 1549-1676.

Nechuta S, Paneth N, Velie EM. Pregnancy characteristics and maternal breast cancer risk: a review of the epidemiologic literature. Cancer Causes Control [print-electronic]. 2010 Jul; 21(7): 967-89. PMID: 20224871, PMCID: PMC3863387, DOI: 10.1007/s10552-010-9524-7, ISSN: 1573-7225.

Nechuta S, Mudd LM, Biery L, Elliott MR, Lepkowski JM, Paneth N, Michigan Alliance for the National Children’s Study. Attitudes of pregnant women towards participation in perinatal epidemiologic research. Paediatr Perinat Epidemiol. 2009; 23((5)): 424-30.

Mudd LM, Nechuta S, Pivarnik J, Paneth N. Factors associated with women’s perceptions of physical activity safety during pregnancy. Prev Med. 2009; 49((2-3)): 194-9.

Mudd LM, Nechuta S, Pivarnik J, Paneth N, Michigan Alliance for the National Children’s Study. Prenatal care and delivery room staff attitudes toward research and the National Childrens Study. Matern Child Health. 2008; 12((6)): 684-91.

Velie EM, Nechuta S, Osuch JR. Lifetime reproductive and anthropometric risk factors for breast cancer in postmenopausal women. Breast Dis. 2006; 24: 17-35.