Thomas Sellers, PhD, MPH

Where You Are:

Thomas Sellers, PhDDr. Thomas Sellers is center director of Moffitt Cancer Center and executive vice president. Dr. Sellers’ research program seeks to integrate a basic science background in nutrition and genetics with observational research methods to try to understand questions like these why less than 20% of cigarette smokers develop lung cancer and why a proven effective cancer treatment is beneficial to only a subset of patients. His studies are based on genetic analysis of germline DNA with increasing incorporation of acquired (somatic) events.

The primary focus of his research is ovarian cancer, which is a devastating disease with no clear warning signs and high mortality rates. Dr. Sellers also has active collaborations that involve cancers of the breast, lung and prostate. The underlying theme is identifying inter-individual differences in cancer susceptibility and using that to inform approaches to cancer prevention, early detection and precision medicine to enhance outcomes after diagnosis.

Critical to the success of this effort is team science, necessitating collaborations with geneticists, pathologists, biostatisticians, biomedical informaticists and clinicians. The Moffitt environment enables that to happen naturally.

Dr. Sellers earned his Master of Public Health from Tulane University’s School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine and his Ph.D. in Epidemiology from Tulane. He was a postdoctoral fellow in genetic epidemiology at Louisiana State University Medical Center.)


  • Center Director; Executive Vice President 
Faculty Rank:
  • Senior Member
Research Appointments:
  • Cancer Epidemiology
Academic Appointment:


  • Cancer Epidemiology


Other Appointments:

University of South Florida
College of Medicine, Department of Oncologic Sciences

Education & Training:

  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Louisiana State University Medical Center, 1989 - Genetic Epidemiology
  • PhD, Tulane University, 1988 - Epidemiology
  • MPH, Tulane University, School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, 1984 - Epidemiology
  • BS, University of California at Davis, 1982 - Community Nutrition
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