Assistant Investigator, Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, University of Puerto Rico Comprehensive Cancer Center (UPRCCC), San Juan, PR

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Dr. Marievelisse Soto is an Assistant Investigator at the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, University of Puerto Rico Comprehensive Cancer Center (UPRCCC). Dr. Soto has a master’s in sciences (MSc) in Epidemiology and a DrPH with a Specialty in Social Determinants of Health from the UPR Graduate School of Public Health. She completed the National Cancer Institute Summer Course in Cancer Prevention, The Principles, and Practice of Cancer Prevention and Control. In addition, she completed a postdoctoral research experience in cancer epidemiology in the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences at the UPRCCC in collaboration with the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) located in Lyon, France. Dr. Soto has a broad background in study design, recruitment strategies, data management using REDCap, analysis of population-based studies and population-based databases, and behavioral intervention trials.

Dr. Soto has been involved in the description of cancer health disparities in Puerto Rico as compared with other racial/ethnic groups in the US, using data from the Puerto Rico Central Cancer Registry and SEER. Dr. Soto has strong research interests in cancer health disparities and infection (HIV, HPV, Hepatitis C, and H pylori) related cancers, which have been documented in more than 55 peer-reviewed publications in these areas. Her long-term research goal is to understand the social and structural factors that potentially influence access to cancer care among persons living with HIV. From 2020 to 2022, she was awarded a Diversity Supplement within the UPR/MDACC Partnership for Excellence in Cancer Research (NCI grant # U54CA096297) to develop risk prediction models for the detection of anal high-grade lesions among persons living with HIV (PLWH) and cervical high-grade lesions among women living in Latin America. During 2018-2020, she expanded her research experience to include natural disasters, cancer care, and mixed methods research as an investigator in a mixed methods project aimed at examining the effects of Hurricanes Irma and Maria on disruption of cancer care among patients with breast and colorectal cancer in Puerto Rico (NCI grant #R21CA239456). Currently, she is an investigator of the ULAC-Net Network and of ULAC-Net 101 (California-México-Puerto Rico Partnership Center for Prevention of HPV-related Cancers in HIV Populations [CAMPO Consortium], NCI grant # U54CA242646), focused on optimizing anal and cervical cancer screening approaches for PLWH. As part of that initiative, Dr. Soto supports recruitment and retention efforts and leads a supplement (NCI grant #3U54CA242646-04S2) to optimize recruitment strategies within CAMPO at the Puerto Rico site. Also, she is a Research Project Leader at the Center for the Promotion of Cancer Health Equity (CePCHE; NIGMS grant # 1P20GM148324-01), where she is conducting a mixed-methods approach to identify multi-level factors within the social determinants of health that affect timely access to cervical cancer care across the cancer care continuum (screening, diagnosis, and treatment) among women living with HIV in Puerto Rico. Lastly, Dr. Soto is an Assistant Director and Mentor at the Cancer Prevention and Control (CAPAC) Research Training Program (NCI grant # R25CA240120) at the UPRCCC.