Ellen L. Goode, Ph.D., is a quantitative health sciences researcher who focuses her work on the genetic and molecular epidemiology of cancer, particularly ovarian cancer, which has known genetic origins and evidence for the existence of additional inherited factors. To better understand the origins of ovarian cancer, Dr. Goode studies women with and without ovarian cancer who are seen at Mayo Clinic. Study participants respond to a research questionnaire and provide a blood sample, which allows for analysis of inherited and lifestyle factors. To identify novel factors associated with outcome and subtype-specific risk factors, tumors from affected women also are studied.
- To discover novel inherited factors in ovarian cancer, Dr. Goode examines variants throughout the genome via large collaborations. For example, the international Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium combines data from more than 60 epidemiologic studies.
- To better understand the functional impact of inherited variation, Dr. Goode examines expression and methylation in relation to genetics in the tumors of study participants at Mayo Clinic and with the Ovarian Tumor Tissue Analysis Consortium.
- To tease out the role of immune and epigenetic factors in ovarian cancer risk and outcomes, Dr. Goode focuses on DNA methylation and tumor-infiltrating cells.
Significance to patient care
The identification and characterization of inherited factors in ovarian cancer is expected to lead to improved risk prediction for people with a family history of cancer. Single factors alone aren't likely to play a major role. However, in combination, people at especially increased risk may be identified and targeted for prevention efforts.
Genetics related to outcome may have particular significance to patient care. For example, if inherited or tumor factors exhibit a prognostic role in the context of a particular chemotherapy, the use or avoidance of specific treatments may be beneficial. Subtyping and characterization of ovarian tumors is expected to lead to improved personalized and more-effective treatment approaches.
Finally, research that increases the understanding of ovarian cancer will advance biological knowledge and facilitate the development of novel therapeutics.
- Chair, Data Access Committee, Ovarian Tumour Tissue Array (OTTA) Consortium, 2019-present
- Member, Data Access Coordinating Committee, Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium, 2011-present
- Member, Steering Committee, Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium, 2008-present
- Chair-elect, chair and past chair, Molecular Epidemiology Group Steering Committee, American Association for Cancer Research, 2017-2020
- Member, Educational Committee, International Genetic Epidemiology Society, 2013-2017
- Chair, Data Access Coordinating Committee, Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium, 2011-2013
- Member, Program Committee, International Genetic Epidemiology Society, 2006-2009
- Member, Ethical, Legal and Social Issues Committee, International Genetic Epidemiology Society, 2003-2006
- Chair, Ethical, Legal and Social Issues Committee, International Genetic Epidemiology Society, 2000