Jean J. Latimer, Ph.D., is director of the NSU AutoNation Institute for Breast Cancer Research and Care and an associate professor and cancer research scientist at NSU’s College of Pharmacy.
Latimer oversees the institute’s focus on advancing research for the development of new methods for the prevention and treatments of cancer.
At NSU, Latimer leads a team that investigates human breast tissue for DNA damage that originates from environmental causes. She has developed a unique method of growing cells from normal breast tissue and tumors at early stages of the disease, enabling further studies into the causes of breast cancer and indicating what type of treatment would provide the best response. Her research interests include DNA repair, stem cells, breast tissue engineering, breast cancer etiology, leukemia recurrence, genomic instability, mutation, precocial breast development, environmental causes of cancer, and other areas.
Prior to joining NSU in 2011, Latimer was an assistant professor at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, and an independent researcher at the university’s Hillman Cancer Center. She also served as an adjunct professor at the Bayer School of Natural and Environmental Sciences at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh.
In addition to teaching, Latimer’s work has generated 35 scientific papers and two patents. In addition, she has developed landmark reports with the California BC Research Program, Institute of Medicine, and the Center for Environmental Oncology. She is the author of two books, Mammography and Beyond: Developing Technologies for the Early Detection of Breast Cancer (National Academy Press, 2001), and Pathways to Breast Cancer: A Case Study for Innovation in Chemical Safety Evaluation (University of California, Berkeley, 2010). Latimer has served on 24 federal grant review study sections and chaired six study sections.
Latimer received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, and a Ph.D. degree from SUNY Roswell Park Cancer Institute. She performed post-doctoral fellowship training at the University of California, San Francisco, with embryologist Roger Pedersen and DNA repair biochemist James Cleaver.
Latimer has received numerous scholarships, fellowships, and awards, including the Hillman Scholar Award from the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, and the U.S. Department of Defense Concept Award for Breast Cancer Research.