Montserrat García-Closas, M.D., Dr.P.H.

Senior Investigator

OFFICE OF THE DIRECTOR

NCI/DCEG

9609 Medical Center Drive
Room SG/7E342
Rockville, MD 20850

240-276-7150

montserrat.garcia-closas@nih.gov

Research Topics

Dr. García-Closas employs a multidisciplinary approach to identify biomarkers of breast and bladder cancer risk in combination with questionnaire-based information collected from large epidemiological studies. Specific areas of interest include:

  • Molecular characterization of tumors to identify exposure signatures and subtype-specific causes of cancer.
  • Identification of biomarkers of risk, including genetic and epigenetic changes.
  • Integration of biomarkers and other risk factors into cancer risk prediction models, and evaluation of their utility in risk stratification to inform personal and public health decisions.

Breast Cancer

In the study of breast cancer etiology, Dr. García-Closas is co-leader of large-scale molecular pathology studies within BCAC. She has contributed to the development of one of the largest, centralized collection of breast tumor tissue with detailed data on risk factors and clinical outcomes. This resource has revealed important tumor markers that delineate the etiologic heterogeneity of breast cancer. At the ICR, she co-led the Breakthrough Generations Study, a large prospective cohort study of over 110,000 women in the U.K. aimed at evaluating risk factors for breast cancer.

As an investigator in the ongoing international genotyping project, OncoArray, Dr. García-Closas seeks to identify inherited susceptibility loci associated with specific subtypes of breast cancer. OncoArray uses a custom microarray chip of 500,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in over 100,000 breast cancer cases drawn from multiple studies from around the world.

In addition, she is one of the lead investigators in a large-scale project embedded in BCAC that will be characterizing thousands of breast tumors using targeted DNA sequencing and immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization analysis. Through the study of how genetic and environmental risk factors, tumor features and clinical progression interrelate, this effort will provide critical information for the development and validation of integrated risk and prognostic models.

To identify novel biomarkers, Dr. García-Closas is also conducting an epigenetic-wide association study (EWAS) of breast cancer using pre-diagnostic DNA samples from the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian (PLCO) Study.

The ultimate goal of this research is to facilitate the development and implementation of targeted prevention and screening strategies for different types of breast cancer.

Bladder Cancer

Dr. García-Closas investigates the combined effects of genetic and environmental risk factors for bladder cancer. She published the definitive study of the interaction between smoking history and the NAT2 genotype, which is one of the few consistent gene-environment interactions described to date. She has made important contributions to the discovery of novel susceptibility loci for bladder cancer using genome-wide association studies (GWAS), an area where she continues to collaborate. In addition, she is engaged in an EWAS of bladder cancer in the PLCO Study to identify additional biomarkers of risk.

Biography

Dr. Montserrat García-Closas investigates the causes of cancer with the aim of improving risk assessment tools that can aid the development of targeted screening and risk reduction strategies for personalized prevention. She carries out a multidisciplinary research program on the molecular epidemiology of breast and bladder cancers, and has made important contributions to the understanding of genetic susceptibility and etiologic heterogeneity of these malignancies.

As Deputy Director for the NCI Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics (DCEG) she focuses not only on her own research interests, but also on the management of the broad scientific program of the Division. She was appointed Acting Chief of the Genetic Epidemiology Branch in 2016.

Dr. García-Closas received her M.D. from the University of Barcelona, Spain, a Master of Public Health in quantitative methods, and a Doctorate of Public Health in epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health. She joined DCEG in 1996 as a postdoctoral fellow, became a tenure-track investigator in 1999 and a tenured senior investigator in 2007. From 2008-2010, she was a visiting scientist at the Department of Oncology and Strangeways Laboratory, Cambridge University, U.K. In 2010, she became a Professor of Epidemiology at the Division of Genetic and Epidemiology of the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR), University of London, U.K.

She is the recipient of several awards including two NIH Merit Awards, an NCI Intramural Research Award, and an NCI Mentor of Merit Award. She has also served in numerous expert committees including the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Molecular Epidemiology Working Group (MEG), the U.K. MEG and the Advisory Committee on NHS Breast Cancer Screening, England. She is a founder member of several large consortia, served as the Chair of the Coordinating Committee for the International Consortium of Case-Control Studies of Bladder Cancer from 2005-2011, and co-Chairs the Pathology and Survival Working Group of the Breast Cancer Association Consortium (BCAC), a major breast cancer consortium.

Selected Publications

  1. García-Closas M, Malats N, Silverman D, Dosemeci M, Kogevinas M, Hein DW, Tardón A, Serra C, Carrato A, García-Closas R, Lloreta J, Castaño-Vinyals G, Yeager M, Welch R, Chanock S, Chatterjee N, Wacholder S, Samanic C, Torà M, Fernández F, Real FX, Rothman N. NAT2 slow acetylation, GSTM1 null genotype, and risk of bladder cancer: results from the Spanish Bladder Cancer Study and meta-analyses. Lancet. 2005;366(9486):649-59.

  2. Yang XR, Chang-Claude J, Goode EL, Couch FJ, Nevanlinna H, Milne RL, Gaudet M, Schmidt MK, Broeks A, Cox A, Fasching PA, Hein R, Spurdle AB, Blows F, Driver K, Flesch-Janys D, Heinz J, Sinn P, Vrieling A, Heikkinen T, Aittomäki K, Heikkilä P, Blomqvist C, Lissowska J, Peplonska B, Chanock S, Figueroa J, Brinton L, Hall P, Czene K, Humphreys K, Darabi H, Liu J, Van 't Veer LJ, van Leeuwen FE, Andrulis IL, Glendon G, Knight JA, Mulligan AM, O'Malley FP, Weerasooriya N, John EM, Beckmann MW, Hartmann A, Weihbrecht SB, Wachter DL, Jud SM, Loehberg CR, Baglietto L, English DR, Giles GG, McLean CA, Severi G, Lambrechts D, Vandorpe T, Weltens C, Paridaens R, Smeets A, Neven P, Wildiers H, Wang X, Olson JE, Cafourek V, Fredericksen Z, Kosel M, Vachon C, Cramp HE, Connley D, Cross SS, Balasubramanian SP, Reed MW, Dörk T, Bremer M, Meyer A, Karstens JH, Ay A, Park-Simon TW, Hillemanns P, Arias Pérez JI, Menéndez Rodríguez P, Zamora P, Benítez J, Ko YD, Fischer HP, Hamann U, Pesch B, Brüning T, Justenhoven C, Brauch H, Eccles DM, Tapper WJ, Gerty SM, Sawyer EJ, Tomlinson IP, Jones A, Kerin M, Miller N, McInerney N, Anton-Culver H, Ziogas A, Shen CY, Hsiung CN, Wu PE, Yang SL, Yu JC, Chen ST, Hsu GC, Haiman CA, Henderson BE, Le Marchand L, Kolonel LN, Lindblom A, Margolin S, Jakubowska A, Lubiński J, Huzarski T, Byrski T, Górski B, Gronwald J, Hooning MJ, Hollestelle A, van den Ouweland AM, Jager A, Kriege M, Tilanus-Linthorst MM, Collée M, Wang-Gohrke S, Pylkäs K, Jukkola-Vuorinen A, Mononen K, Grip M, Hirvikoski P, Winqvist R, Mannermaa A, Kosma VM, Kauppinen J, Kataja V, Auvinen P, Soini Y, Sironen R, Bojesen SE, Ørsted DD, Kaur-Knudsen D, Flyger H, Nordestgaard BG, Holland H, Chenevix-Trench G, Manoukian S, Barile M, Radice P, Hankinson SE, Hunter DJ, Tamimi R, Sangrajrang S, Brennan P, McKay J, Odefrey F, Gaborieau V, Devilee P, Huijts PE, Tollenaar RA, Seynaeve C, Dite GS, Apicella C, Hopper JL, Hammet F, Tsimiklis H, Smith LD, Southey MC, Humphreys MK, Easton D, Pharoah P, Sherman ME, Garcia-Closas M. Associations of breast cancer risk factors with tumor subtypes: a pooled analysis from the Breast Cancer Association Consortium studies. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2011;103(3):250-63.

  3. Garcia-Closas M, Couch FJ, Lindstrom S, Michailidou K, Schmidt MK, Brook MN, Orr N, Rhie SK, Riboli E, Feigelson HS, Le Marchand L, Buring JE, Eccles D, Miron P, Fasching PA, Brauch H, Chang-Claude J, Carpenter J, Godwin AK, Nevanlinna H, Giles GG, Cox A, Hopper JL, Bolla MK, Wang Q, Dennis J, Dicks E, Howat WJ, Schoof N, Bojesen SE, Lambrechts D, Broeks A, Andrulis IL, Guénel P, Burwinkel B, Sawyer EJ, Hollestelle A, Fletcher O, Winqvist R, Brenner H, Mannermaa A, Hamann U, Meindl A, Lindblom A, Zheng W, Devillee P, Goldberg MS, Lubinski J, Kristensen V, Swerdlow A, Anton-Culver H, Dörk T, Muir K, Matsuo K, Wu AH, Radice P, Teo SH, Shu XO, Blot W, Kang D, Hartman M, Sangrajrang S, Shen CY, Southey MC, Park DJ, Hammet F, Stone J, Veer LJ, Rutgers EJ, Lophatananon A, Stewart-Brown S, Siriwanarangsan P, Peto J, Schrauder MG, Ekici AB, Beckmann MW, Dos Santos Silva I, Johnson N, Warren H, Tomlinson I, Kerin MJ, Miller N, Marme F, Schneeweiss A, Sohn C, Truong T, Laurent-Puig P, Kerbrat P, Nordestgaard BG, Nielsen SF, Flyger H, Milne RL, Perez JI, Menéndez P, Müller H, Arndt V, Stegmaier C, Lichtner P, Lochmann M, Justenhoven C, Ko YD, Gene ENvironmental Interaction and breast CAncer (GENICA) Network., Muranen TA, Aittomäki K, Blomqvist C, Greco D, Heikkinen T, Ito H, Iwata H, Yatabe Y, Antonenkova NN, Margolin S, Kataja V, Kosma VM, Hartikainen JM, Balleine R, kConFab Investigators., Tseng CC, Berg DV, Stram DO, Neven P, Dieudonné AS, Leunen K, Rudolph A, Nickels S, Flesch-Janys D, Peterlongo P, Peissel B, Bernard L, Olson JE, Wang X, Stevens K, Severi G, Baglietto L, McLean C, Coetzee GA, Feng Y, Henderson BE, Schumacher F, Bogdanova NV, Labrèche F, Dumont M, Yip CH, Taib NA, Cheng CY, Shrubsole M, Long J, Pylkäs K, Jukkola-Vuorinen A, Kauppila S, Knight JA, Glendon G, Mulligan AM, Tollenaar RA, Seynaeve CM, Kriege M, Hooning MJ, van den Ouweland AM, van Deurzen CH, Lu W, Gao YT, Cai H, Balasubramanian SP, Cross SS, Reed MW, Signorello L, Cai Q, Shah M, Miao H, Chan CW, Chia KS, Jakubowska A, Jaworska K, Durda K, Hsiung CN, Wu PE, Yu JC, Ashworth A, Jones M, Tessier DC, González-Neira A, Pita G, Alonso MR, Vincent D, Bacot F, Ambrosone CB, Bandera EV, John EM, Chen GK, Hu JJ, Rodriguez-Gil JL, Bernstein L, Press MF, Ziegler RG, Millikan RM, Deming-Halverson SL, Nyante S, Ingles SA, Waisfisz Q, Tsimiklis H, Makalic E, Schmidt D, Bui M, Gibson L, Müller-Myhsok B, Schmutzler RK, Hein R, Dahmen N, Beckmann L, Aaltonen K, Czene K, Irwanto A, Liu J, Turnbull C, Familial Breast Cancer Study (FBCS)., Rahman N, Meijers-Heijboer H, Uitterlinden AG, Rivadeneira F, Australian Breast Cancer Tissue Bank (ABCTB) Investigators., Olswold C, Slager S, Pilarski R, Ademuyiwa F, Konstantopoulou I, Martin NG, Montgomery GW, Slamon DJ, Rauh C, Lux MP, Jud SM, Bruning T, Weaver J, Sharma P, Pathak H, Tapper W, Gerty S, Durcan L, Trichopoulos D, Tumino R, Peeters PH, Kaaks R, Campa D, Canzian F, Weiderpass E, Johansson M, Khaw KT, Travis R, Clavel-Chapelon F, Kolonel LN, Chen C, Beck A, Hankinson SE, Berg CD, Hoover RN, Lissowska J, Figueroa JD, Chasman DI, Gaudet MM, Diver WR, Willett WC, Hunter DJ, Simard J, Benitez J, Dunning AM, Sherman ME, Chenevix-Trench G, Chanock SJ, Hall P, Pharoah PD, Vachon C, Easton DF, Haiman CA, Kraft P. Genome-wide association studies identify four ER negative-specific breast cancer risk loci. Nat Genet. 2013;45(4):392-8, 398e1-2.

  4. Garcia-Closas M, Rothman N, Figueroa JD, Prokunina-Olsson L, Han SS, Baris D, Jacobs EJ, Malats N, De Vivo I, Albanes D, Purdue MP, Sharma S, Fu YP, Kogevinas M, Wang Z, Tang W, Tardón A, Serra C, Carrato A, García-Closas R, Lloreta J, Johnson A, Schwenn M, Karagas MR, Schned A, Andriole G Jr, Grubb R 3rd, Black A, Gapstur SM, Thun M, Diver WR, Weinstein SJ, Virtamo J, Hunter DJ, Caporaso N, Landi MT, Hutchinson A, Burdett L, Jacobs KB, Yeager M, Fraumeni JF Jr, Chanock SJ, Silverman DT, Chatterjee N. Common genetic polymorphisms modify the effect of smoking on absolute risk of bladder cancer. Cancer Res. 2013;73(7):2211-20.

  5. Mavaddat N, Pharoah PD, Michailidou K, Tyrer J, Brook MN, Bolla MK, Wang Q, Dennis J, Dunning AM, Shah M, Luben R, Brown J, Bojesen SE, Nordestgaard BG, Nielsen SF, Flyger H, Czene K, Darabi H, Eriksson M, Peto J, Dos-Santos-Silva I, Dudbridge F, Johnson N, Schmidt MK, Broeks A, Verhoef S, Rutgers EJ, Swerdlow A, Ashworth A, Orr N, Schoemaker MJ, Figueroa J, Chanock SJ, Brinton L, Lissowska J, Couch FJ, Olson JE, Vachon C, Pankratz VS, Lambrechts D, Wildiers H, Van Ongeval C, van Limbergen E, Kristensen V, Grenaker Alnæs G, Nord S, Borresen-Dale AL, Nevanlinna H, Muranen TA, Aittomäki K, Blomqvist C, Chang-Claude J, Rudolph A, Seibold P, Flesch-Janys D, Fasching PA, Haeberle L, Ekici AB, Beckmann MW, Burwinkel B, Marme F, Schneeweiss A, Sohn C, Trentham-Dietz A, Newcomb P, Titus L, Egan KM, Hunter DJ, Lindstrom S, Tamimi RM, Kraft P, Rahman N, Turnbull C, Renwick A, Seal S, Li J, Liu J, Humphreys K, Benitez J, Pilar Zamora M, Arias Perez JI, Menéndez P, Jakubowska A, Lubinski J, Jaworska-Bieniek K, Durda K, Bogdanova NV, Antonenkova NN, Dörk T, Anton-Culver H, Neuhausen SL, Ziogas A, Bernstein L, Devilee P, Tollenaar RA, Seynaeve C, van Asperen CJ, Cox A, Cross SS, Reed MW, Khusnutdinova E, Bermisheva M, Prokofyeva D, Takhirova Z, Meindl A, Schmutzler RK, Sutter C, Yang R, Schürmann P, Bremer M, Christiansen H, Park-Simon TW, Hillemanns P, Guénel P, Truong T, Menegaux F, Sanchez M, Radice P, Peterlongo P, Manoukian S, Pensotti V, Hopper JL, Tsimiklis H, Apicella C, Southey MC, Brauch H, Brüning T, Ko YD, Sigurdson AJ, Doody MM, Hamann U, Torres D, Ulmer HU, Försti A, Sawyer EJ, Tomlinson I, Kerin MJ, Miller N, Andrulis IL, Knight JA, Glendon G, Marie Mulligan A, Chenevix-Trench G, Balleine R, Giles GG, Milne RL, McLean C, Lindblom A, Margolin S, Haiman CA, Henderson BE, Schumacher F, Le Marchand L, Eilber U, Wang-Gohrke S, Hooning MJ, Hollestelle A, van den Ouweland AM, Koppert LB, Carpenter J, Clarke C, Scott R, Mannermaa A, Kataja V, Kosma VM, Hartikainen JM, Brenner H, Arndt V, Stegmaier C, Karina Dieffenbach A, Winqvist R, Pylkäs K, Jukkola-Vuorinen A, Grip M, Offit K, Vijai J, Robson M, Rau-Murthy R, Dwek M, Swann R, Annie Perkins K, Goldberg MS, Labrèche F, Dumont M, Eccles DM, Tapper WJ, Rafiq S, John EM, Whittemore AS, Slager S, Yannoukakos D, Toland AE, Yao S, Zheng W, Halverson SL, González-Neira A, Pita G, Rosario Alonso M, Álvarez N, Herrero D, Tessier DC, Vincent D, Bacot F, Luccarini C, Baynes C, Ahmed S, Maranian M, Healey CS, Simard J, Hall P, Easton DF, Garcia-Closas M. Prediction of breast cancer risk based on profiling with common genetic variants. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2015;107(5).


This page was last updated on November 30th, 2017