Melissa Troester

Melissa Troester, PhD

Department of Epidemiology
Research Professor
Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
UNC Center for Environmental Health and Susceptibility
253 Rosenau
CB# 7435
Chapel Hill, NC 27599


Dr. Melissa Troester, Professor of Epidemiology with joint appointment in Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, leads the CBCS3 project with Shelton Earp, MD, the Director of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center. Dr. Troester is co-leader of Lineberger’s Program in Cancer Epidemiology and the Director of the UNC Center for Environmental Health and Susceptibility. Her research focuses on biomarker development and validation, genomic methods, epidemiologic methods, and breast cancer. She has been leading CBCS molecular research since 2012 and has more than a decade of experience working with genomic data and molecular biology of breast cancer risk and progression.

Melissa Troester in the Gillings News

Representative Courses

EPID 770 Cancer Epidemiology and Pathogenesis | Syllabus

Key Publications

Racial differences in PAM50 Subtypes in the Carolina Breast Cancer Study. Troester MA, Sun X, Allott EH, Geradts J, Cohen SM, Tse CK, Kirk EL, Thorne LB, Mathews M, Li Y, Hu Z, Robinson WR, Hoadley KA. Olopade OI, Reeder-Hayes KE, Earp HS, Olshan AF, Carey LA, Perou CM (2018). J Natl Cancer Inst, 110(2).

Performance of three-biomarker immunohistochemistry for intrinsic breast cancer subtyping in the AMBER consortium. Allott EH, Cohen SM, Geradts J, Sun X, Khoury T, Bshara W, Zirpoli GR, Miller CR, Hwang H, Thorne LB, O’Connor S, Tse CK, Bell MB, Hu Z, Li Y, Kirk EL, Bethea TN, Perou CM, Palmer JR, Ambrosone CB, Olshan AF, Troester MA (2016). Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev, 25(3).

Digital histologic analysis reveals morphometric patterns of age-related involution in breast epithelium and stroma. Sandhu R, Chollet-Hinton L, Kirk EL, Midkiff B, Troester MA (2016). Hum Pathol, 48.

Intratumoral heterogeneity as a source of discordance in breast cancer biomarker classification. Allott EH, Geradts J, Sun X, Cohen SM, Zirpoli GR, Khoury T, Bshara W, Chen M, Sherman ME, Palmer JR, Ambrosone CB, Olshan AF, Troester MA (2016). Breast Cancer Research, 18(1).

Staff/Administrative Duties

Director, Center for Environmental Health and Susceptibility

Co-Leader, Cancer Epidemiology Program, Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center.


  • MPH, Epidemiology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2006
  • PhD, Environmental Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2001
  • MS, Chemistry, University of Chicago, 1995
  • BA, Chemistry, Macalester College, 1994