Gillings School Directory
Amy Sun, PhD

Xuezheng (Amy) Sun, PhD

Research Assistant Professor
  • Suite 32, CVS Plaza
  • 137 East Franklin Street
  • CB #8050
  • Chapel Hill, NC, 27599-8050
  • USA

Dr. Xuezheng Sun is a research assistant professor of Epidemiology, specializing in molecular epidemiology of cancer. Dr. Sun’s primary research interests focus on using cutting-edge omics technologies and novel statistical methods to understand the pathogenic process of chronic complex diseases, and ultimately to identify novel biomarkers for disease prediction, prevention, and treatment. 

Dr. Sun has worked extensively with high-throughput data of several large epidemiological studies, including the Carolina Breast Cancer Study, the Polish Women’s Breast Cancer Study, the Normal Breast Study, and the African American Breast Cancer Epidemiology and Risk (AMBER) consortium of breast cancer disparities. Her work has shown that environmental exposures (e.g. mammographic density, obesity and parity) modify the breast microenvironment and microstructure, which further influence breast cancer initiation and progression. Currently, her research has extended to more cancer type, including bladder cancer, prostate cancer, and colorectal cancer.

Key Publications

Pollen concentration and asthma exacerbations in Wake County, North Carolina, 2006–2012. Xuezheng Sun, Anna Waller, Karin B. Yeatts, Lauren Thie (2015). Science of the Total Environment, 2016(544), 185-191.

Post-diagnosis adiposity and survival among breast cancer patients: influence of breast cancer subtype. Sun X, Nichols HB, Robinson WR, Sherman ME, Olshan AF, Troester MA.  (2015). Cancer Causes Control, 26(12), 1803-11.

Benign breast tissue composition in breast cancer patients: association with risk factors, clinical variables, and gene expression. Sun X, Sandhu R, Gierach GL, Figueroa JD, Sherman ME, Troester MA.  (2014). Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev., 23(12), 2810-8.

Parity-related molecular signatures and breast cancer subtypes by estrogen receptor status. Sun X, Rotunno M, Figueroa J, Sherman M, Garcia-Closas M, Meltzer P, Williams T, Schneider SS, Jerry DJ, Yang XR, Troester MA.  (2014). Breast Cancer Res, 16(4), R74.

Relationship of mammographic density and gene expression: analysis of normal breast tissue surrounding breast cancer. Sun X, Gierach GL, Sandhu R, Williams T, Midkiff BR, Lissowska J, Wesolowska E, Boyd NF, Johnson NB, Figueroa JD, Sherman ME, Troester MA.  (2013). Clin Cancer Res, 19(18), 4972-82.


PhD, Epidemiology, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, NC, 2014

MSPH, Epidemiology, Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, 2008

MBBS, Medicine, China Medical University, Shenyang, Liaoning, China, 2002

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