David J. Hunter
Professor

David J. Hunter

Vincent L. Gregory Professor of Cancer Prevention, Emeritus

Epidemiology

dhunter@hsph.harvard.edu

Other Positions

Professor of Medicine, Emeritus

Emeritus

Brigham and Women's Hospital


Overview

David Hunter's principal research interests are the etiology of cancer in women, particularly breast, ovarian, and skin cancer. He is an investigator on the Nurses' Health Study, a long-running cohort of 121,000 US women, and is project director for the Nurses' Health Study II, a newer cohort of 116,000 women. He also analyzes inherited susceptibility to cancer and other chronic diseases using molecular techniques and studying molecular markers of environmental exposures. This work is based in subcohorts of the Nurses Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study of approximately 33,000 women and 18,000 men who have given a blood sample that can be used for DNA analysis. Dr. Hunter supervises laboratories at the Harvard School of Public Health in which gene sequence information from these samples is obtained. He is Co-Chair of the NCI Breast and Prostate Cancer Cohort Consortium. He collaborates with investigators in Tanzania to understand the relationship of nutritional status to progression of HIV disease and perinatal transmission. Professor Hunter was the Director of the Harvard Center for Cancer Prevention from 1997-2003, and is now Director of the Program in Molecular and Genetic Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health.

MB, BS, 1982
University of Sydney Medical School

MPH, 1985
Harvard School of Public Health

ScD, 1988
Harvard School of Public Health


Bibliography

Risk of Breast Cancer Among Carriers of Pathogenic Variants in Breast Cancer Predisposition Genes Varies by Polygenic Risk Score.

Gao C, Polley EC, Hart SN, Huang H, Hu C, Gnanaolivu R, Lilyquist J, Boddicker NJ, Na J, Ambrosone CB, Auer PL, Bernstein L, Burnside ES, Eliassen AH, Gaudet MM, Haiman C, Hunter DJ, Jacobs EJ, John EM, Lindström S, Ma H, Neuhausen SL, Newcomb PA, O'Brien KM, Olson JE, Ong IM, Patel AV, Palmer JR, Sandler DP, Tamimi R, Taylor JA, Teras LR, Trentham-Dietz A, Vachon CM, Weinberg CR, Yao S, Weitzel JN, Goldgar DE, Domchek SM, Nathanson KL, Couch FJ, Kraft P.

J Clin Oncol. 2021 Jun 08. JCO2001992. PMID: 34101481

Genetically predicted circulating concentrations of micronutrients and risk of colorectal cancer among individuals of European descent: a Mendelian randomization study.

Tsilidis KK, Papadimitriou N, Dimou N, Gill D, Lewis SJ, Martin RM, Murphy N, Markozannes G, Zuber V, Cross AJ, Burrows K, Lopez DS, Key TJ, Travis RC, Perez-Cornago A, Hunter DJ, van Duijnhoven FJB, Albanes D, Arndt V, Berndt SI, Bézieau S, Bishop DT, Boehm J, Brenner H, Burnett-Hartman A, Campbell PT, Casey G, Castellví-Bel S, Chan AT, Chang-Claude J, de la Chapelle A, Figueiredo JC, Gallinger SJ, Giles GG, Goodman PJ, Gsur A, Hampe J, Hampel H, Hoffmeister M, Jenkins MA, Keku TO, Kweon SS, Larsson SC, Le Marchand L, Li CI, Li L, Lindblom A, Martín V, Milne RL, Moreno V, Nan H, Nassir R, Newcomb PA, Offit K, Pharoah PDP, Platz EA, Potter JD, Qi L, Rennert G, Sakoda LC, Schafmayer C, Slattery ML, Snetselaar L, Schenk J, Thibodeau SN, Ulrich CM, Van Guelpen B, Harlid S, Visvanathan K, Vodickova L, Wang H, White E, Wolk A, Woods MO, Wu AH, Zheng W, Bueno-de-Mesquita B, Boutron-Ruault MC, Hughes DJ, Jakszyn P, Kühn T, Palli D, Riboli E, Giovannucci EL, Banbury BL, Gruber SB, Peters U, Gunter MJ.

Am J Clin Nutr. 2021 06 01. 113(6):1490-1502. PMID: 33740060

Author Correction: A case-only study to identify genetic modifiers of breast cancer risk for BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers.

Coignard J, Lush M, Beesley J, O'Mara TA, Dennis J, Tyrer JP, Barnes DR, McGuffog L, Leslie G, Bolla MK, Adank MA, Agata S, Ahearn T, Aittomäki K, Andrulis IL, Anton-Culver H, Arndt V, Arnold N, Aronson KJ, Arun BK, Augustinsson A, Azzollini J, Barrowdale D, Baynes C, Becher H, Bermisheva M, Bernstein L, Bialkowska K, Blomqvist C, Bojesen SE, Bonanni B, Borg A, Brauch H, Brenner H, Burwinkel B, Buys SS, Caldés T, Caligo MA, Campa D, Carter BD, Castelao JE, Chang-Claude J, Chanock SJ, Chung WK, Claes KBM, Clarke CL, Collée JM, Conroy DM, Czene K, Daly MB, Devilee P, Diez O, Ding YC, Domchek SM, Dörk T, Dos-Santos-Silva I, Dunning AM, Dwek M, Eccles DM, Eliassen AH, Engel C, Eriksson M, Evans DG, Fasching PA, Flyger H, Fostira F, Friedman E, Fritschi L, Frost D, Gago-Dominguez M, Gapstur SM, Garber J, Garcia-Barberan V, García-Closas M, García-Sáenz JA, Gaudet MM, Gayther SA, Gehrig A, Georgoulias V, Giles GG, Godwin AK, Goldberg MS, Goldgar DE, González-Neira A, Greene MH, Guénel P, Haeberle L, Hahnen E, Haiman CA, Håkansson N, Hall P, Hamann U, Harrington PA, Hart SN, He W, Hogervorst FBL, Hollestelle A, Hopper JL, Horcasitas DJ, Hulick PJ, Hunter DJ, Imyanitov EN, Jager A, Jakubowska A, James PA, Jensen UB, John EM, Jones ME, Kaaks R, Kapoor PM, Karlan BY, Keeman R, Khusnutdinova E, Kiiski JI, Ko YD, Kosma VM, Kraft P, Kurian AW, Laitman Y, Lambrechts D, Le Marchand L, Lester J, Lesueur F, Lindstrom T, Lopez-Fernández A, Loud JT, Luccarini C, Mannermaa A, Manoukian S, Margolin S, Martens JWM, Mebirouk N, Meindl A, Miller A, Milne RL, Montagna M, Nathanson KL, Neuhausen SL, Nevanlinna H, Nielsen FC, O'Brien KM, Olopade OI, Olson JE, Olsson H, Osorio A, Ottini L, Park-Simon TW, Parsons MT, Pedersen IS, Peshkin B, Peterlongo P, Peto J, Pharoah PDP, Phillips KA, Polley EC, Poppe B, Presneau N, Pujana MA, Punie K, Radice P, Rantala J, Rashid MU, Rennert G, Rennert HS, Robson M, Romero A, Rossing M, Saloustros E, Sandler DP, Santella R, Scheuner MT, Schmidt MK, Schmidt G, Scott C, Sharma P, Soucy P, Southey MC, Spinelli JJ, Steinsnyder Z, Stone J, Stoppa-Lyonnet D, Swerdlow A, Tamimi RM, Tapper WJ, Taylor JA, Terry MB, Teulé A, Thull DL, Tischkowitz M, Toland AE, Torres D, Trainer AH, Truong T, Tung N, Vachon CM, Vega A, Vijai J, Wang Q, Wappenschmidt B, Weinberg CR, Weitzel JN, Wendt C, Wolk A, Yadav S, Yang XR, Yannoukakos D, Zheng W, Ziogas A, Zorn KK, Park SK, Thomassen M, Offit K, Schmutzler RK, Couch FJ, Simard J, Chenevix-Trench G, Easton DF, Andrieu N, Antoniou AC.

Nat Commun. 2021 May 14. 12(1):2986. PMID: 33990587

Publisher Correction: Trans-ancestry genome-wide association meta-analysis of prostate cancer identifies new susceptibility loci and informs genetic risk prediction.

Conti DV, Darst BF, Moss LC, Saunders EJ, Sheng X, Chou A, Schumacher FR, Olama AAA, Benlloch S, Dadaev T, Brook MN, Sahimi A, Hoffmann TJ, Takahashi A, Matsuda K, Momozawa Y, Fujita M, Muir K, Lophatananon A, Wan P, Le Marchand L, Wilkens LR, Stevens VL, Gapstur SM, Carter BD, Schleutker J, Tammela TLJ, Sipeky C, Auvinen A, Giles GG, Southey MC, MacInnis RJ, Cybulski C, Wokolorczyk D, Lubinski J, Neal DE, Donovan JL, Hamdy FC, Martin RM, Nordestgaard BG, Nielsen SF, Weischer M, Bojesen SE, Røder MA, Iversen P, Batra J, Chambers S, Moya L, Horvath L, Clements JA, Tilley W, Risbridger GP, Gronberg H, Aly M, Szulkin R, Eklund M, Nordström T, Pashayan N, Dunning AM, Ghoussaini M, Travis RC, Key TJ, Riboli E, Park JY, Sellers TA, Lin HY, Albanes D, Weinstein SJ, Mucci LA, Giovannucci E, Lindstrom S, Kraft P, Hunter DJ, Penney KL, Turman C, Tangen CM, Goodman PJ, Thompson IM, Hamilton RJ, Fleshner NE, Finelli A, Parent MÉ, Stanford JL, Ostrander EA, Geybels MS, Koutros S, Freeman LEB, Stampfer M, Wolk A, Håkansson N, Andriole GL, Hoover RN, Machiela MJ, Sørensen KD, Borre M, Blot WJ, Zheng W, Yeboah ED, Mensah JE, Lu YJ, Zhang HW, Feng N, Mao X, Wu Y, Zhao SC, Sun Z, Thibodeau SN, McDonnell SK, Schaid DJ, West CML, Burnet N, Barnett G, Maier C, Schnoeller T, Luedeke M, Kibel AS, Drake BF, Cussenot O, Cancel-Tassin G, Menegaux F, Truong T, Koudou YA, John EM, Grindedal EM, Maehle L, Khaw KT, Ingles SA, Stern MC, Vega A, Gómez-Caamaño A, Fachal L, Rosenstein BS, Kerns SL, Ostrer H, Teixeira MR, Paulo P, Brandão A, Watya S, Lubwama A, Bensen JT, Fontham ETH, Mohler J, Taylor JA, Kogevinas M, Llorca J, Castaño-Vinyals G, Cannon-Albright L, Teerlink CC, Huff CD, Strom SS, Multigner L, Blanchet P, Brureau L, Kaneva R, Slavov C, Mitev V, Leach RJ, Weaver B, Brenner H, Cuk K, Holleczek B, Saum KU, Klein EA, Hsing AW, Kittles RA, Murphy AB, Logothetis CJ, Kim J, Neuhausen SL, Steele L, Ding YC, Isaacs WB, Nemesure B, Hennis AJM, Carpten J, Pandha H, Michael A, De Ruyck K, De Meerleer G, Ost P, Xu J, Razack A, Lim J, Teo SH, Newcomb LF, Lin DW, Fowke JH, Neslund-Dudas C, Rybicki BA, Gamulin M, Lessel D, Kulis T, Usmani N, Singhal S, Parliament M, Claessens F, Joniau S, Van den Broeck T, Gago-Dominguez M, Castelao JE, Martinez ME, Larkin S, Townsend PA, Aukim-Hastie C, Bush WS, Aldrich MC, Crawford DC, Srivastava S, Cullen JC, Petrovics G, Casey G, Roobol MJ, Jenster G, van Schaik RHN, Hu JJ, Sanderson M, Varma R, McKean-Cowdin R, Torres M, Mancuso N, Berndt SI, Van Den Eeden SK, Easton DF, Chanock SJ, Cook MB, Wiklund F, Nakagawa H, Witte JS, Eeles RA, Kote-Jarai Z, Haiman CA.

Nat Genet. 2021 Mar. 53(3):413. PMID: 33473200

Combined Associations of a Polygenic Risk Score and Classical Risk Factors With Breast Cancer Risk.

Kapoor PM, Mavaddat N, Choudhury PP, Wilcox AN, Lindström S, Behrens S, Michailidou K, Dennis J, Bolla MK, Wang Q, Jung A, Abu-Ful Z, Ahearn T, Andrulis IL, Anton-Culver H, Arndt V, Aronson KJ, Auer PL, Freeman LEB, Becher H, Beckmann MW, Beeghly-Fadiel A, Benitez J, Bernstein L, Bojesen SE, Brauch H, Brenner H, Brüning T, Cai Q, Campa D, Canzian F, Carracedo A, Carter BD, Castelao JE, Chanock SJ, Chatterjee N, Chenevix-Trench G, Clarke CL, Couch FJ, Cox A, Cross SS, Czene K, Dai JY, Earp HS, Ekici AB, Eliassen AH, Eriksson M, Evans DG, Fasching PA, Figueroa J, Fritschi L, Gabrielson M, Gago-Dominguez M, Gao C, Gapstur SM, Gaudet MM, Giles GG, González-Neira A, Guénel P, Haeberle L, Haiman CA, Håkansson N, Hall P, Hamann U, Hatse S, Heyworth J, Holleczek B, Hoover RN, Hopper JL, Howell A, Hunter DJ, John EM, Jones ME, Kaaks R, Keeman R, Kitahara CM, Ko YD, Koutros S, Kurian AW, Lambrechts D, Le Marchand L, Lee E, Lejbkowicz F, Linet M, Lissowska J, Llaneza A, MacInnis RJ, Martinez ME, Maurer T, McLean C, Neuhausen SL, Newman WG, Norman A, O'Brien KM, Olshan AF, Olson JE, Olsson H, Orr N, Perou CM, Pita G, Polley EC, Prentice RL, Rennert G, Rennert HS, Ruddy KJ, Sandler DP, Saunders C, Schoemaker MJ, Schöttker B, Schumacher F, Scott C, Scott RJ, Shu XO, Smeets A, Southey MC, Spinelli JJ, Stone J, Swerdlow AJ, Tamimi RM, Taylor JA, Troester MA, Vachon CM, van Veen EM, Wang X, Weinberg CR, Weltens C, Willett W, Winham SJ, Wolk A, Yang XR, Zheng W, Ziogas A, Dunning AM, Pharoah PDP, Schmidt MK, Kraft P, Easton DF, Milne RL, García-Closas M, Chang-Claude J.

J Natl Cancer Inst. 2021 Mar 01. 113(3):329-337. PMID: 32359158

A case-only study to identify genetic modifiers of breast cancer risk for BRCA1/BRCA2 mutation carriers.

Coignard J, Lush M, Beesley J, O'Mara TA, Dennis J, Tyrer JP, Barnes DR, McGuffog L, Leslie G, Bolla MK, Adank MA, Agata S, Ahearn T, Aittomäki K, Andrulis IL, Anton-Culver H, Arndt V, Arnold N, Aronson KJ, Arun BK, Augustinsson A, Azzollini J, Barrowdale D, Baynes C, Becher H, Bermisheva M, Bernstein L, Bialkowska K, Blomqvist C, Bojesen SE, Bonanni B, Borg A, Brauch H, Brenner H, Burwinkel B, Buys SS, Caldés T, Caligo MA, Campa D, Carter BD, Castelao JE, Chang-Claude J, Chanock SJ, Chung WK, Claes KBM, Clarke CL, Collée JM, Conroy DM, Czene K, Daly MB, Devilee P, Diez O, Ding YC, Domchek SM, Dörk T, Dos-Santos-Silva I, Dunning AM, Dwek M, Eccles DM, Eliassen AH, Engel C, Eriksson M, Evans DG, Fasching PA, Flyger H, Fostira F, Friedman E, Fritschi L, Frost D, Gago-Dominguez M, Gapstur SM, Garber J, Garcia-Barberan V, García-Closas M, García-Sáenz JA, Gaudet MM, Gayther SA, Gehrig A, Georgoulias V, Giles GG, Godwin AK, Goldberg MS, Goldgar DE, González-Neira A, Greene MH, Guénel P, Haeberle L, Hahnen E, Haiman CA, Håkansson N, Hall P, Hamann U, Harrington PA, Hart SN, He W, Hogervorst FBL, Hollestelle A, Hopper JL, Horcasitas DJ, Hulick PJ, Hunter DJ, Imyanitov EN, Jager A, Jakubowska A, James PA, Jensen UB, John EM, Jones ME, Kaaks R, Kapoor PM, Karlan BY, Keeman R, Khusnutdinova E, Kiiski JI, Ko YD, Kosma VM, Kraft P, Kurian AW, Laitman Y, Lambrechts D, Le Marchand L, Lester J, Lesueur F, Lindstrom T, Lopez-Fernández A, Loud JT, Luccarini C, Mannermaa A, Manoukian S, Margolin S, Martens JWM, Mebirouk N, Meindl A, Miller A, Milne RL, Montagna M, Nathanson KL, Neuhausen SL, Nevanlinna H, Nielsen FC, O'Brien KM, Olopade OI, Olson JE, Olsson H, Osorio A, Ottini L, Park-Simon TW, Parsons MT, Pedersen IS, Peshkin B, Peterlongo P, Peto J, Pharoah PDP, Phillips KA, Polley EC, Poppe B, Presneau N, Pujana MA, Punie K, Radice P, Rantala J, Rashid MU, Rennert G, Rennert HS, Robson M, Romero A, Rossing M, Saloustros E, Sandler DP, Santella R, Scheuner MT, Schmidt MK, Schmidt G, Scott C, Sharma P, Soucy P, Southey MC, Spinelli JJ, Steinsnyder Z, Stone J, Stoppa-Lyonnet D, Swerdlow A, Tamimi RM, Tapper WJ, Taylor JA, Terry MB, Teulé A, Thull DL, Tischkowitz M, Toland AE, Torres D, Trainer AH, Truong T, Tung N, Vachon CM, Vega A, Vijai J, Wang Q, Wappenschmidt B, Weinberg CR, Weitzel JN, Wendt C, Wolk A, Yadav S, Yang XR, Yannoukakos D, Zheng W, Ziogas A, Zorn KK, Park SK, Thomassen M, Offit K, Schmutzler RK, Couch FJ, Simard J, Chenevix-Trench G, Easton DF, Andrieu N, Antoniou AC.

Nat Commun. 2021 02 17. 12(1):1078. PMID: 33597508


News

Dozens of new genetic regions linked to breast cancer

Two studies represent the largest-ever examination of the inherited genetic contribution to the risk of getting breast cancer For immediate release: October 23, 2017 Boston, MA – Two large genome-wide association studies of thousands of women have identified…

Millions die in pain each year without morphine

More than 25 million people around the world die every year in pain—even though off-patent morphine, which could ease their suffering, costs just pennies per dose, according to an October 12, 2017 report from The Lancet. About 2.5…

Portrait of former Acting Dean David Hunter unveiled

September 8, 2017 – A crowd of faculty, staff, and students gathered at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health on September 6, 2017 for the unveiling of a portrait of David Hunter, Vincent L. Gregory Professor in…