Jane McElroy, PhD


University of Missouri researcher Dr. Jane McElroy is uncovering clues to better health.

McElroy studies health issues, both in the general population, among LGBTQ individuals, and in rural populations. She co-created Project LOLA (Living Out and Living Actively) to help lesbian and bisexual women better understand health matters and to provide more access to resources. She is also co-director of the Rural Health Research Center (RHRC) and Missouri Practice-Based Innovations Network (MO-PIN).

Much of McElroy’s work relates to individuals with cancer. She has documented that a growing number of patients receive a breast cancer diagnosis over the telephone. Additionally, she has investigated ways in which queer-identifying individuals may experience greater stress during breast cancer treatment. She has highlighted the fact that queer Black women experience unique struggles when diagnosed with cancer, yet little research exists on the topic. From interviews with family practice clinicians, she has heard about the trust they are given by their rural patients and strong need for resources to maximize cancer survivor’s quality of life and follow-up cancer care.

In addition, Dr. McElroy has examined causes of endometrial cancer and has worked with geographical information systems. As co-director of Missouri Partnership to Increase Colorectal Cancer Screening project (MPICCS), she is engaged in a partnership with over 30 clinics who are a critical component of the health care safety net among rural residents in central and southwestern Missouri. She co-leads a team of practice facilitators in helping these clinics implement evidence based interventions to increase colorectal cancer screening. And, with the need for understanding more about SARS CoV-2 virus and the COVID-19 pandemic, in collaboration with Dr. Henry Wan, they have reported findings about COVID-19 variant distribution in Missouri, co-infection with Influenza, and immune response among pregnant and lactating women who are vaccinated. 

McElroy’s findings have appeared in Women’s Health Issues, Journal of the National Cancer Institute, Environmental Health Perspectives, Journal of Medical Virology, Preventing Chronic Disease,  and other leading publications.

Dr. Jane McElroy is a professor of research in family and community medicine with an appointment in the school of medicine.

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Academic Information



One Hospital Drive
MA306 Medical Sciences Building, DC032.00
Columbia, MO 65212
United States

P. 573-882-4993

Research Interests

  • Cancer and Chronic Diseases
  • Environmental Exposures with Metals
  • Geographical Information Systems

Education & Training

Post-Graduate School

PhD: Environmental Health, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Awards & Honors


Invited Attendee, nominated by MU Women in Medicine and Medical Sciences
AAMC Mid-Career Women Faculty Development Seminar
Atlanta, GA

Invited Speaker: “Six pillars for effective community engagement”
University of Missouri System Research Summit at St. Louis
St. Louis, MO

In the News


For a complete publication list, see:

My Bibliography (NCBI Collections)