Traci Nicole Bethea, PhD, MPA

Assistant Professor, Medicine

Traci Bethea
(617) 206-6178
72 E. Concord St Instructional (L)


Dr. Traci N. Bethea is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at BU School of Medicine and an Epidemiologist at the Slone Epidemiology Center at Boston University. She received her B.A. from Duke University, M.P.A. from Columbia University, and Ph.D. in environmental health from Boston University School of Public Health. Trained in both environmental science and environmental epidemiology, Dr. Bethea has extensive experience analyzing and interpreting data related to environmental exposures and human health. Her work has investigated health impacts related to the siting of correctional facilities, healthy housing in housing developments, particulate matter exposure in public transit systems, urban/rural status and self-rated health, and individual- and community-level factors in relation to head and neck cancer. Her postdoctoral research has focused on cancer epidemiology and cancer health disparities affecting African Americans. In particular, Dr. Bethea has used pooled data from consortial projects to examine risk factors for breast cancer subtypes among African American women and to assess the relation of body mass index to risk of pancreatic cancer mortality among African Americans. Current work continues research on breast cancer subtypes in African American women and also examines risk factors for ovarian cancer and for sleep disturbances. New research directions involve the study of environmental and social factors as predictors of health disparities in cancer incidence and survivorship and aims to “bridge the gap” between the biologic, individual, and macroenvironmental levels.

Other Positions

  • Epidemiologist, Slone Epidemiology Center, Boston University School of Medicine


  • Boston University School of Public Health, PhD
  • Columbia University, MPA


  • Published on 11/15/2017

    Palmer JR, Castro-Webb N, Bertrand K, Bethea TN, Denis GV. Type II Diabetes and Incidence of Estrogen Receptor Negative Breast Cancer in African American Women. Cancer Res. 2017 Nov 15; 77(22):6462-6469. PMID: 29141994.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 9/13/2017

    Bertrand KA, Gerlovin H, Bethea TN, Palmer JR. Pubertal growth and adult height in relation to breast cancer risk in African American women. Int J Cancer. 2017 Dec 15; 141(12):2462-2470. PMID: 28845597.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 9/13/2017

    Chollet-Hinton L, Olshan AF, Nichols HB, Anders CK, Lund JL, Allott EH, Bethea TN, Hong CC, Cohen SM, Khoury T, Zirpoli GR, Borges VF, Rosenberg LA, Bandera EV, Ambrosone CB, Palmer JR, Troester MA. Biology and Etiology of Young-Onset Breast Cancers among Premenopausal African American Women: Results from the AMBER Consortium. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2017 Dec; 26(12):1722-1729. PMID: 28903991.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 4/1/2017

    Coogan PF, White LF, Yu J, Brook RD, Burnett RT, Marshall JD, Bethea TN, Rosenberg L, Jerrett M. Long-Term Exposure to NO2 and Ozone and Hypertension Incidence in the Black Women's Health Study. Am J Hypertens. 2017 Apr 01; 30(4):367-372. PMID: 28096146.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 12/27/2016

    Bethea TN, Palmer JR, Adams-Campbell LL, Rosenberg L. A prospective study of reproductive factors and exogenous hormone use in relation to ovarian cancer risk among Black women. Cancer Causes Control. 2017 May; 28(5):385-391. PMID: 28025764.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 12/19/2016

    Charlot M, Castro-Webb N, Bethea TN, Bertrand K, Boggs DA, Denis GV, Adams-Campbell LL, Rosenberg L, Palmer JR. Diabetes and breast cancer mortality in Black women. Cancer Causes Control. 2017 Jan; 28(1):61-67. PMID: 27995352.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 10/18/2016

    Bertrand KA, Bethea TN, Adams-Campbell LL, Rosenberg L, Palmer JR. Differential Patterns of Risk Factors for Early-Onset Breast Cancer by ER Status in African American Women. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2017 Feb; 26(2):270-277. PMID: 27756774.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 8/12/2016

    Palmer JR, Gerlovin H, Bethea TN, Bertrand KA, Holick MF, Ruiz-Narvaez EN, Wise LA, Haddad SA, Adams-Campbell LL, Kaufman HW, Rosenberg L, Cozier YC. Predicted 25-hydroxyvitamin D in relation to incidence of breast cancer in a large cohort of African American women. Breast Cancer Res. 2016 Aug 12; 18(1):86. PMID: 27520657.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 5/4/2016

    Sonderman JS, Bethea TN, Kitahara CM, Patel AV, Harvey C, Knutsen SF, Park Y, Park SY, Fraser GE, Teras LR, Purdue MP, Stolzenberg-Solomon RZ, Gillanders EM, Palmer JR, Kolonel LN, Blot WJ. Multiple Myeloma Mortality in Relation to Obesity Among African Americans. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2016 Oct; 108(10). PMID: 27147231.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 4/21/2016

    Bethea TN, Palmer JR, Rosenberg L, Cozier YC. Neighborhood Socioeconomic Status in Relation to All-Cause, Cancer, and Cardiovascular Mortality in the Black Women's Health Study. Ethn Dis. 2016 Apr 21; 26(2):157-64. PMID: 27103765.

    Read at: PubMed

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