Manuela Orjuela

Manuela Orjuela received her B.A. and M.D. from Yale University and a Master of Science in Epidemiology from Harvard School of Public Health.

She is an assistant professor in Pediatric Oncology at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, where she also serves as an Investigator and Member of the Executive Committee. Orjuela is a member of the Columbia Center for Environmental Health in Northern Manhattan and Scientific Director at the Community and Ambulatory Research & Enrollment (CARE), Herbert Irving Cancer Center. She is also a faculty affiliate of the Columbia Mexican Studies Center and the Institute of Latin American Studies.

Orjuela is a molecular epidemiologist and pediatric oncologist whose research focuses on gene- nutrient/ environment interactions during pregnancy and early childhood and the development of later genetic and epigenetic changes in childhood disease. She is part of a multidisciplinary team examining folate pathway metabolism and risk for retinoblastoma in collaboration with investigators in Mexico, and Canada, including the Hospital Infantil de Mexico, the Hospital de Pediatria (IMSS), the Instituto Nacional de Salud Publica (INSP), the Jean Mayer USDA at Tufts, and the University of Toronto. With the Columbia CCCEH, she leads a collaboration examining specific pre-leukemic genetic changes with the Leukemia Research Laboratory of the UK Institute for Cancer Research, and with the Combustion Products and Persistent Pollutants Biomonitoring Laboratory CDC examining PAH exposure and clastogenesis. In collaboration with INSP researchers, Orjuela is involved in multiple studies assessing dietary intake in Mexico and in recent Mexican immigrants.

Orjuela is a member of the Children’s Oncology Group, the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center in Molecular Epidemiology, the NCI Brain Tumor Epidemiology Consortium, and the NIH Study Section on Epidemiology of Cancer (EPIC). She has been awarded the Dr. Alexandro Aguirre Prize from the Sociedad Latinoamericana de Oncologia Pediatrica and served as an American Association for Cancer Research Minority Scholar in Cancer Prevention.


Selected Publications:

“Dietary intake and childhood leukemia: The Diet and Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Treatment (DALLT) cohort study.” With Elena J. Ladas, et. al. Nutrition (2016).

“Chromosomal aberrations in cord blood are associated with prenatal exposure to carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.” With Kirsti Bocskay, et. al. Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention 14.2 (2005): 506-511.

“Low‐Dose Chemotherapy and Rituximab for Posttransplant Lymphoproliferative Disease (PTLD): A Children’s Oncology Group Report.”With Gross, Thomas G., et al.  American Journal of Transplantation 12.11 (2012): 3069-3075.

“Intensive multimodality therapy for patients with stage 4a metastatic retinoblastoma.” With Dunkel, Ira J., et al. Pediatric blood & cancer 55.1 (2010): 55-59.

“Prenatal PAH exposure is associated with chromosome-specific aberrations in cord blood.”  With Orjuela, Manuela A., et al. Mutation Research/Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis 703.2 (2010): 108-114.

“Trilateral retinoblastoma: potentially curable with intensive chemotherapy.” With Dunkel, Ira J., et al.  Pediatric blood & cancer 54.3 (2010): 384-387.

“World disparities in risk definition and management of retinoblastoma: a report from the International Retinoblastoma Staging Working Group.” With Chantada, Guillermo L., et al.  Pediatric blood & cancer 50.3 (2008): 692-694.



Professional Links


Yale University

Harvard University

Columbia University

Selected Publications

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