Our Team - Title

Our Team


Isabelle Thierry-Chef, as Head of the Medical Radiation Group, spearheads radiation activities within the Environment and Health over the Life course programme of ISGlobal. With a primary background in environmental sciences and radiation protection, she earned her PhD in 2000 for the reconstruction of organ doses she performed for the 15-Country Study on Cancer Risk among Radiation Workers in the Nuclear Industry. 

In the last 20 years, she has dedicated herself to studying the potential health impacts (mainly cancer but also non-cancer effects and social impact) of exposure to ionising radiation, with particular attention payed to children. Within the EPI-CT project (European Paediatric CT scan study), she led the dose reconstruction workpackage (WP) and she subsequently led the WP devoted to the assessment of pediatric scanning's health impacts in the MEDIRAD EU project. In 2018, she initiated the HARMONIC project, which she is coordinating since then, aiming to understand the health impact of cardiac fluoroscopy and modern radiotherapy in paediatrics. On the basis of the collaboration with clinicians, initiated in the framework of HARMONIC, she is WP leader in the e-QuoL project devoted to Quality of Life of children, adolescents and young adults surviving cancer.          

She has extensive experience in coordinating activities in major international research projects: 15-country nuclear workers study, Alpha-Risk, INWORKS, BECOME, Gene-Rad-Risk CHILD-MED-RAD, EPI-CT, MEDIRAD, e-QuoL and IMAGEOMICS and she contributed to several expert groups: IARC monographs on Radiation, NCI monographs on cancer risk associated with exposure to low-doses of ionizing radiation, INSERM expert group on Nuclear tests and health- consequences in French Polynesia. 

Since 2021, Dr Thierry-Chef is a member of Committee 3 of the International Commission on Radiological Protection where she is leading a task group devoted to protection of humans involved in biomedical research. She is also member of the EU EURAMED and SHARE platforms. 

Lines of research

  • Risk of cancer following exposure to ionising radiation in childhood. Quantify the potential risk of cancer following medical exposure to ionising radiation from CT scanning in childhood and/or X-ray guided cardiac catheterization in children with heart defects 
  • Childhood cancer survivors. Investigate the biological and health (cancer and non-cancer) effects of modern radiotherapy modalitiesin paediatric cancer patients. Promoting equality in Quality of Life for childhood to young adulthood cancer patients, survivors and their families.
  • Cancer in radiation workers. Investigate cancer risks associated protracted or repeated low-dose exposures to ionising radiation in cohorts of workers in the nuclear industry and medical workers. 
  • Breast Cancer. Contribute to understand the interaction between radiotherapy and immunotherapy in breast cancer patients and identify patients with a predicted favourable response to combined radiotherapy and immunotherapy.

Main publications

  • Journy N, Bolle S, Brualla L, Dumas A, Fresneau B, Haddy N, Haghdoost S, Haustermans K, Jackson A, Karabegovic S, Lassen-Ramshad Y, Thariat J, Wette MR, Botzenhardt S, De Wit I, Demoor-Goldschmidt C, Christiaens M, Høyer M, Isebaert S, Jacobs S, Henriksen LT, Maduro JH, Ronckers C, Steinmeier T, Uyttebroeck A, Van Beek K, Walsh L, Thierry-Chef I &Timmermann B. Assessing late outcomes of advances in radiotherapy for paediatric cancers: study protocol of the ‘HARMONIC-RT’ European registry (NCT 04746729). Radiother Oncol. 2024 Jan; 190:109972
  • Thierry-Chef I, Journy N, Bernier MO, McNally R, Dabin J, et al. Health effects of ionising radiation in paediatrics undergoing either cardiac fluoroscopy or modern radiotherapy (The HARMONIC project). EPJ Nuclear Sci Technol. 2023 ;9:22. 3.
  • Richardson DB, Leuraud K, Laurier D, Gillies M, Haylock R, Kelly-Reif K, Bertke S, Daniels RD, Thierry-Chef I, Moissonnier M, Kesminiene A, Schubauer-Berigan MK. Cancer mortality after low dose exposure to ionising radiation in workers in France, the United Kingdom, and the United States (INWORKS): cohort study. BMJ. 2023 Aug 16;382:e074520.
  • Bosch de Basea Gomez M, Thierry-Chef I, Harbron R, Hauptmann M, Byrnes G, Bernier MO, et al. Risk of hematological malignancies from CT radiation exposure in children, adolescents and young adults. Nat Med. 2023 Dec;29(12):3111–9.         
  • Thierry-Chef I, Ferro G, Le Cornet L, Dabin J, Istad TS, Jahnen A, et al. Dose Estimation for the European Epidemiological Study on Pediatric Computed Tomography (EPI-CT). Radiat Res. 2021 Jul 1;196(1):74–99. 
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