Sherette Godfrey, PhD, is a first-year postdoctoral trainee in the lab of Bernard Weissman, PhD, at UNC-Chapel Hill. She is a resident of Greensboro, NC, by way of Whiteville, NC. Growing up she was always interested in medicine but decided not to pursue a medical degree and instead chose to pursue her interests in health disparities as it relates to African American women in cancer. She is also interested in science advocacy and mentoring.
Currently, Sherette is working on identifying epigenetic changes underlying health disparity outcomes in African American and non-Hispanic White women. The goal of this study is to identify DNA methylation and Chromatin accessibility changes as a health disparity in African American women with endometrial cancer (EC) to Non-Hispanic White women with EC.
To understand the underlying mechanisms of these relationships, identification of the global and site-specific differences in DNA methylation via Methylation EPIC Beadchips in ECs from AA women and NHW women will be performed. Additionally, there will also be a search for changes in chromatin accessibility by ATAC-seq in these same samples. An integrative analysis of these 2 datasets will offer novel insights into the key regulatory alterations that distinguish ECs from AA and NHW women. Ultimately, these results will reveal new therapeutic targets for both AA and NHW women with this deadly cancer. Thus, it is hypothesized that differential sites of DNA methylation and chromatin accessibility contribute to the disparities in EC grade and mortality observed between AA and NHW women.