Maria C. Katapodi

Dr. Maria Katapodi, Assistant Professor

Maria C. Katapodi, PhD, RN, FAAN

Adjunct Associate Professor

University of Michigan School of Nursing
400 North Ingalls Building
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-5482

Fax: (734) 936-5525

Scholarly Expertise / Activity


  • Breast cancer prevention and control; family communication and support
  • Genetic counseling and testing of families at risk for hereditary cancer
  • Public health genomics
  • Perceived risk and decision making
  • Meta-analysis methodology

Dr. Katapodi is interested in breast cancer prevention and decision-making about genetic testing and cancer screening. Her research is focused on women with deleterious mutations that predispose them to breast and ovarian cancer (i.e., perceived risk, family communication, decisional conflict related to genetic testing, and cancer screening behaviors). She is testing the effects of a family-based communication and decision support intervention for families that harbor a cancer-predisposing mutation and is also leading a multidisciplinary dissemination study testing the efficacy of two versions of an intervention (Targeted vs. Enhanced Tailored). The intervention aims to increase screening among young breast cancer survivors (i.e., women whose age of diagnosis suggests hereditary/ familial breast cancer) and their high-risk female relatives. Finally, she has expertise in meta-analysis methodology. Her first meta-analysis examined the association between perceived breast cancer risk and screening behaviors. The second one examined the effects of interventions targeting family caregivers of cancer patients.

Current Research Grants and Programs:

  • Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (PI: Katapodi, MC), Sep 2010 – Aug 2013, “Development of a Family Communication and Decision-support Intervention for Women with a BRCA1 or a BRCA2 Mutation and Their At-Risk Family Members”, Merajver, SD, Northouse, LL; co-Investigators, $350,000
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (PI: Katapodi, MC), Sep 2011 – Aug 2014, “Interventions to Increase Screening Utilization by Breast Cancer Survivors and their High Risk Female Relatives: Using Cancer Surveillance and the Michigan Genomics Academic-Practice Partnership.”, Duffy, SA, Janz, NC, Merajver SD, Northouse, LL, Ronis, D; co-Investigators, $900,000


Building on her own areas of expertise, Dr. Katapodi is committed to advancing nurses' academic preparation in the field of genetics and decision-making. In her appointment at the UM School of Nursing, Dr. Katapodi has taught courses across all levels. Within each course she teaches, she brings students’ attention to the latest advances in genomics and how these advances might inform their future nursing practice. Dr. Katapodi has designed and taught courses that focus specifically on the incorporation of genomics research in nursing, healthcare decision-making, and meta-analysis.

Overall, Dr. Katapodi  believes in setting high academic standards and providing a challenging, yet nurturing, academic environment in which students learn and eventually thrive. In her courses, she seeks to help students strengthen their critical thinking skills and learn how to monitor their own educational experience.

Affiliations / Service

  • Member, Nursing Research, Review Board, 2012-present
  • Member, Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Michigan 2007-present
  • Member, Oncology Nursing Society, 1999-present
  • Member, Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing, 2000-present
  • Member, Oncology Nursing Forum, Review Board, 2008-present
  • Member, Society for Medical Decision Making, 2006-present

Notable Awards / Honors

  • Fellow, American Academy of Nursing, 2012
  • Award, Fulbright Foundation, 1998
  • Fellow, University of California Regents, 2001
  • Elizabeth Crosby Research Award, ADVANCE Program, University of Michigan, 2008
  • Excellence in Writing Award for Quantitative Nursing Research, Oncology Nursing Society, 2010
  • Fellow, National Institute of Nursing Research - Summer Genetics Institute, 2010


  • PhD, University of California San Francisco (UCSF), San Francisco, CA, 2004
  • MSc, University of California San Francisco (UCSF), San Francisco, CA, 2000
  • BSN, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Athens, Greece, 1998

Publication Highlights

  • Visvanathan, K, Hurley, P, Bantug, E, Brown, P, Col, NF, Cuzick, J, Davidson, NE, DeCensi, A, Fabian, C, Ford, L, Garber, J, Katapodi, MC, Kramer, B, Morrow, M, Parker, B, Runowicz, C, Vogel III, VG, Wade, JL, & Lippman, SM. (2013). Use of pharmacologic interventions for breast cancer risk reduction: American Society of Clinical Oncology clinical practice guideline. Journal of Clinical Oncology, July 8 (epub ahead of print).
  • Katapodi, MC, Northouse, LL, Schafenacker, AM, Duquette, D, Duffy, SA, Ronis, D, Anderson, B, Janz, N, McLosky, JM, Milliron, KJ, Merajver, SD, Duong, LM, Copeland. (2013) Using a state cancer registry to recruit young breast cancer survivors and high-risk relatives: A protocol of a randomized trial testing the efficacy of a targeted versus a tailored intervention to increase breast cancer screening. BMC Cancer 13(97). DOI:10.1186/1471-2407-1397.
  • Katapodi, MC, Northouse, LL, Milliron, KJ, Liu, G, Merajver, SD. (2012) Individual and family characteristics associated with genetic testing for hereditary susceptibility to breast cancer in high-risk families. Psycho-Oncology, DOI: 10.1002/pon.3139. Epub ahead of print.
  • Katapodi, MC, Munro, M, Pierce, PF, & Williams, RA. (2011). Psychometric Testing of the Decisional Conflict Scale for Genetic Testing for HBOC. Nursing Research, 60(6), 368 – 377.
  • Katapodi, MC, Northouse, LL. (2011) Comparative Effectiveness Research: Using Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses to Synthesize Empirical Evidence. Research and Theory for Nursing Practice, 25(3), 191 - 209.
  • Katapodi, MC, Northouse, LL, Pierce, PF, Milliron, KJ, Liu, G, Merajver, SD. (2011) Individual and familial differences between women who pursued genetic testing for HBOC and their at-risk relatives who did not. Oncology Nursing Forum. 38(5),572 - 581.
  • Katapodi, MC, Dodd, MJ, Facione, NC, Lee, KA, Humphreys, JC. (2010). Why some women have an optimistic or a pessimistic bias about their breast cancer risk? Experiences, heuristics, and knowledge of risk factors. Cancer Nursing, 33(1), 64 -73.
  • Northouse LL, Katapodi MC, Song L, Zhang L, Mood DW. (2010) Interventions with family caregivers of cancer patients: A meta-analysis of randomized trials. CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, 60(5), 317 - 339.
  • Katapodi, MC, Dodd, MJ, Lee, KA, Facione, NC. (2009). Underestimation of breast cancer risk: Influence on screening behavior. Oncology Nursing Forum, 36(3), 306 - 314.
  • Katapodi, MC, Facione, NC, Humphreys, JC & Dodd, MJ. (2005). Perceived breast cancer risk: Heuristic reasoning and search for a dominance structure. Social Science and Medicine, 60(2), 421 - 432.
  • Katapodi, MC, & Aouizerat, BA. (2005). Do women in the community recognize hereditary and sporadic breast cancer risk factors? Oncology Nursing Forum, 32(3), 617 - 623.
  • Katapodi, MC, Lee, KA, Facione, NC, & Dodd, MJ. (2004). Predictors of perceived breast cancer risk and the relation between perceived risk and breast cancer screening: A meta-analytic review. Preventive Medicine, 38(4), 388 – 402.
  • Katapodi, MC, Facione, NC, Miaskowski, C, Dodd, M, & Waters, C. (2002). The influence of social support on breast cancer screening in a multicultural community sample. Oncology Nursing Forum, 29(5), 847-852.