Dr. Nishihara is an instructor in Medicine at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School. Prior to her postdoctoral training at Harvard School Public Health and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Dr. Nishihara obtained a PhD in Health Sciences from Osaka University in 2011. During her training, she has been conducting longitudinal studies on lifestyle, diet, and colorectal cancer screening in relation to colorectal neoplasia. With a strong background in epidemiology, Dr. Nishihara has been actively engaged in assembling and organizing molecular pathological data in longitudinal epidemiologic cohorts and playing a pivotal role in expanding and conducting Molecular Pathological Epidemiology (MPE) research. Currently, Dr. Nishihara focuses on molecular subtyping and biological network analysis of colorectal cancer to understand colorectal cancer etiology and carcinogenic pathways.
I am currently applying biological network analysis to understand disease heterogeneity and the complexity of pathogenic mechanisms in colorectal cancer. With a strong background in biostatistics and epidemiology, I have been actively engaged in assembling and organizing molecular pathological data in Harvard cohorts including the Nurses? Health Study (NHS) and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (HPFS). I have been playing a pivotal role in expanding and conducting Molecular Pathological Epidemiology (MPE) research and serving as a member of Program Committee for the International Molecular Pathological Epidemiology (MPE) Meeting Series since its first meeting in 2013. In our ongoing effort of the whole-exome sequencing in 1,000 CRC patients, we have successfully found RNF43 as a potential new driver gene commonly mutated in microsatellite unstable CRC. The result was published in the Nature Genetics (Giannakis et al. 2014). With the interdisciplinary expertise, I hope to promote CRC prevention and treatment in the context of computational biology and precision medicine