Brooke R. Druliner, Ph.D.

Why did you choose to study clinical and translational research?

Mayo Clinic KL2 scholar Brooke R. Druliner, Ph.D.

As early as an undergraduate, my initial interests were rooted in the life sciences. After studying the work of Dr. Paul Farmer, whose mission is to transform health care for the world's poor, I recognized that a multidimensional perspective of human health is essential.

Consequently, I majored in anthropology with a focus on medicine and health. At the same time, I worked in a molecular biology research lab, which ultimately led me to a cellular and molecular biology doctoral program at Florida State University.

My experiences — including identifying cultural factors of health disparities, learning the fundamentals of cellular and molecular biology, and defining chromatin patterns in adenocarcinoma — led me to realize that a full understanding of the molecular etiology of cancer requires a clinical perspective. I believe that all these pieces together will make an impact on patients' health and care.

What type of research are you doing?

With the guidance of my mentors, my focus is on examining the epigenomic basis for colon cellular transformation that has the potential to translate into clinical action.

The ultimate goal is to determine if there are epigenetic-based signatures of the development and progression of precancerous lesions (polyps), which could be targetable to stop the polyps either from forming or progressing to cancer.

Why Mayo Clinic?

Mayo Clinic provides an ideal venue for a postdoctoral fellow to pursue a career in cancer research in a patient-focused context because it is founded on three shields of interrelated endeavors (practice, education and research) that are dedicated to the improvement of the human condition.

I feel fortunate to have the opportunity to work with top experts in my field to pursue questions that we hope directly impact patients' lives.

What are you looking forward to as a KL2 scholar?

I'm looking forward to continuing my trajectory toward developing an independent research program.

Through this KL2 award, I was able to formally assemble a multidisciplinary team of mentors covering clinical and translational cancer research, genomic engineering, epigenomics of disease and bioinformatics of big data, all of whom guide me on the pathway to a successful independent research career, and I'm excited to continue learning from and working with them all. I'm also eager to interact and network with other KL2 awardees — past, present and future!

The KL2 program will allow me to continue receiving the training necessary to position myself as a strong candidate for independent funding, which will bridge the transition from research associate to independent investigator.

Review Dr. Druliner's publications on MyNCBI.



Academic Rank

Instructor of Medicine


Mayo Clinic

Graduate School

Florida State University

KL2 Appointment Dates

July 2020 to July 2023

Multidisciplinary Expertise Utilized

Genomic engineering, epigenomics, bioinformatics


Research Associate


Characterizing Telomere and Chromatin Dynamics in Colorectal Cell Transformation


Mayo Clinic Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCaTS)