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Susan Kay Murphy, PhD

Associate Professor in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Campus Mail: 701 W. Main Street, Suite 510, Room 5140; Duke PO Box 90534, Durham, NC 27701
Phone: (919) 681-3423

My research interests are largely centered around epigenetics and the role of epigenetic modifications in health and disease. My research projects include studies of gynecologic malignancies, including working on approaches to target ovarian cancer cells that survive chemotherapy and later give rise to recurrent disease.  I have ongoing collaborative projects in which we investigate the nature of the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) hypothesis. DOHaD reflects the idea that our early environment plays an important part in shaping our risk of developing neurodevelopmental disorders or other chronic health problems. I am currently focused on preconception exposures in males with studies of the impact of cannabis use on the sperm epigenome and heritability of these effects. My lab is also working on the effects of in utero exposures, with our primary work revolving around the Newborn Epigenetics STudy (NEST), a mother-infant dyad cohort recruited from central North Carolina between 2005 and 2011 and whom we have followed since early pregnancy.

Education and Training

  • Ph.D., Wake Forest University, 1998
  • B.A., University of North Carolina - Charlotte, 1992

Selected Grants and Awards


Murphy, S. K., Y. Ito, and G. D. Parks. “A functional antigenomic promoter for the paramyxovirus simian virus 5 requires proper spacing between an essential internal segment and the 3' terminus.” J Virol 72, no. 1 (January 1998): 10–19.

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Murphy, S. K., and G. D. Parks. “Genome nucleotide lengths that are divisible by six are not essential but enhance replication of defective interfering RNAs of the paramyxovirus simian virus 5.” Virology 232, no. 1 (May 26, 1997): 145–57.

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Bradley, Megan S., Marie-Helene Boudreau, Carole Grenier, Zhiqing Huang, Susan K. Murphy, and Nazema Y. Siddiqui. “Urine RNA Processing in a Clinical Setting: Comparison of 3 Protocols.” Female Pelvic Med Reconstr Surg 25, no. 3 (n.d.): 247–51.

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