Debra L. Barton

Debra Barton

Debra L. Barton, RN, PhD, AOCN, FAAN

Mary Lou Willard French Professor of Nursing
Department of Systems, Populations and Leadership
Room 2153 400NIB

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

Telephone: (734) 763-3868
Fax: (734) 936-5525

Scholarly Expertise / Activity


  • Cancer related fatigue
  • Sexual health
  • Menopausal symptoms
  • Complementary therapy
  • Clinical trials
Dr. Barton’s program of research has grown out of involvement and subsequently leadership in the Cancer Clinical Trials Network (CCTN) over the past 11 years. Dr. Barton has developed and/or completed, as the Principal Investigator or co-PI, 15 large Phase III randomized clinical trials in oncology symptom management, and 7 Phase II trials, funded either through the Komen Foundation or a federal R 21 grant. For several of the trials funded by a U10 grant from the National Cancer Institute, she has successfully obtained funding from the American Cancer Society and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation to implement translational aims intended to explore mechanisms of action and symptom physiology. Research has focused on the following areas: cognitive dysfunction, sleep, nausea and vomiting, hot flashes, libido, vaginal atrophy, fatigue and peripheral neuropathy. One key trial demonstrated efficacy of American ginseng for cancer related fatigue.  She is currently launching a randomized phase II trial of 97 women with a history of breast and gynecologic cancer to evaluate mind-body interventions for improving self-image and sexual health and is also the Co-PI and Director of a P20 Center for Self-Management.

Current Research Grants and Programs:

  • Center for complexity and self-management of chronic diseases. – MPI. 2014-2019
  • Enhancing sexual health in female cancer survivors, funded by the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. – PI. 2013-2015


Dr. Barton has had experience performing in a broad array of educational roles that have served to both develop and train health care providers as well as clinical researchers. She has mentored both physicians and nurses in clinical research, including being a co-primary mentor on an institutional KL2 and chair of a thesis committee for a physician in Women’s Health pursuing a master’s in clinical research offered by the Clinical and Translational Science Awards program (CTSA). She has been on both dissertation and masters’ thesis committees.  Dr. Barton has been invited to deliver Grand Rounds at 4 academic medical centers and recently was invited to Beijing, China as part of a symposium to discuss the development of rigorous clinical trials to evaluate Traditional Chinese Medicine for cancer care.  Dr. Barton has also been on scientific and educational planning committees for the American Society of Clinical Oncology and the Society of Integrative Oncology.  Dr. Barton currently teaches Intervention Research in the PhD program.

Affiliations / Service

  • Member and co-leader of Symptom management core, NRG Cancer Prevention and Control Committee (Cooperative Group), 2015
  • Co-chair (elected position), National Cancer Institute Symptom Management Quality of Life Steering Committee, 2014-2017
  • Associate Member, University of Michigan Cancer Center, 2014-present
  • Associate Editor, npj Breast Cancer, 2014-present
  • PhD Admissions Committee University of Michigan School of Nursing, 2014-2015
  • Chair, ONS Foundation Research Grants Review Panel, 2014-2015
  • Coach, R01 Boot Camp, University of Michigan Medical School, 2014-2015
  • Executive Committee, University of Michigan School of Nursing, 2014-present
  • Member, Clinical Guideline Committee, Endocrine therapy for hormone receptor positive advanced breast cancer, American Society of Clinical Oncology, 2013-present
  • Member and Core grant review panel, Oncology Nursing Society, 2012-present
  • Editor in Chief, PDQ Supportive/Palliative Care, National Cancer Institute, 2011-3/2015
  • Track leader, Scientific planning committee, Patient and Survivor Care, American Society of Clinical Oncology, 2012 (Member Planning Committee 2011-2013; Member, Education Planning Committee 2010-2011)
  • Member, American Nurses Association, 2008 - present
  • Multinational Association for the Supportive Member, Membership Committee Care in Cancer, 2003-present
  • Multinational Association for the Supportive Member, Membership Committee Care in Cancer, 2003-present

Notable Awards / Honors

  • Fellow, American Academy of Nursing, 2008
  • Group Award for PDQ Editorial Board, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, 2010


  • PhD, Indiana University Purdue University School of Nursing, Indianapolis IN 2002
  • MS, University of Illinois, Champaign, IL 1991
  • BSW, University of Illinois, Champaign, IL 1979

Publication Highlights

  • Barton DL, Thanarajasingam G, Sloan JA, Diekmann B, Fuloria J, Kottschade LA, Lyss AP, Jaslowski AJ, Mazurczak MA, Blair SC, Terstriep S, Loprinzi CL. Phase III Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study of Gabapentin for the Prevention of Delayed CINV (Chemotherapy Induced Nausea and Vomiting) in Patients Receiving Highly Emetogenic Chemotherapy, NCCTG N08C3 (Alliance)" Cancer, 2014 Nov 15;120(22):3575-3583. DOI: 10.1002/cncr.28892. Epub 2014 Jul 9. PMID: 25043153, NIHMS615268.
  • Vincent A, Whipple MO, OhTH, Guderian JA, Barton DL, Luedtke CA. Early experience with a brief, multimodal, multidisciplinary treatment program for fibromyalgia. Pain Manag Nurs, 14(4): 228-235, 2013. PMID: 24315246
  • Barton DL, Liu H, Dakhil SR, Linquist B, Sloan JA, Nichols CR, McGinn TW, Stella PJ, Seeger GR, Sood A, Loprinzi, CL. (2013) Wisconsin Ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) to Improve Cancer Related Fatigue: A Randomized, Double-Blind Trial, N07C2. JNCI Journal of the National Cancer Institute ; doi: 10.1093/jnci/djt181.
  • Barton DL, Burger K, Novotny PJ, Fitch TR, Kohli S, Soori G, Wilwerding MB, Sloan JA, Kottschade LA, Rowland KM Jr, Dakhil SR, Nikcevich DA, Loprinzi CL. (2013) The use of Ginkgo biloba for the prevention of chemotherapy-related cognitive dysfunction in women receiving adjuvant treatment for breast cancer, N00C9. Support Care Cancer. 21(4):1185-92. PMID:23150188. DOI:10.1007/s00520-012-1647-9.
  • Sood R, Sood A, Wolf SL, Linquist BM, Liu H, Sloan JA, Satele DV, Loprinzi CL, Barton DL.(2013) Paced breathing compared with usual breathing for hot flashes. Menopause. 20(2):179-84. PMID:22990758. DOI:10.1097/gme.0b013e31826934b6.
  • Ness S, Kokal J, Fee-Schroeder K, Novotny P, Satele D, Barton D. (2013) Concerns across the survivorship trajectory: results from a survey of cancer survivors. Oncol Nurs Forum. 40(1):35-42. PMID:23269768. DOI:10.1188/13.ONF.35-42.
  • Pachman DR, Barton DL, Swetz KM, Loprinzi CL. (2012) Troublesome symptoms in cancer survivors: fatigue, insomnia, neuropathy, and pain. J Clin Oncol. 30(30):3687-96. PMID:23008320. DOI:10.1200/JCO.2012.41.7238.
  • Kadakia KC, Barton DL, Loprinzi CL, Sloan JA, Otley CC, Diekmann BB, Novotny PJ, Alberts SR, Limburg PJ, Pittelkow MR. (2012) Randomized controlled trial of acitretin versus placebo in patients at high-risk for basal cell or squamous cell carcinoma of the skin (North Central Cancer Treatment Group Study 969251). Cancer; 118(8):2128-37. PMID:21882176. PMCID:3365547. DOI:10.1002/cncr.26374.
  • Barton DL, Pachman DR. (2012) Clinical trials in integrative therapies. Semin Oncol Nurs; 28(1):10-28. PMID:22281307. DOI:10.1016/j.soncn.2011.11.003.
  • Pruthi S, Qin R, Terstreip SA, Liu H, Loprinzi CL, Shah TR, Tucker KF, Dakhil SR, Bury MJ, Carolla RL, Steen PD, Vuky J, Barton DL. (2012) A phase III, randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial of flaxseed for the treatment of hot flashes: North Central Cancer Treatment Group N08C7. Menopause; 19(1):48-53. PMID:21900849. PMCID:3246070. DOI:10.1097/gme.0b013e318223b021.
  • Pachman DR, Barton DL, Clayton AC, McGovern RM, Jefferies JA, Novotny PJ, Sloan JA, Loprinzi CL, Gostout BS. (2012) Randomized clinical trial of imiquimod: an adjunct to treating cervical dysplasia. Am J Obstet Gynecol; 206(1):42.e1-7. PMID:21907959. PMCID:3237774. D 73.
  • Barton DL, Wos EJ, Qin R, Mattar BI, Green NB, Lanier KS, Bearden JD 3rd, Kugler JW, Hoff KL, Reddy PS, Rowland KM Jr, Riepl M, Christensen B, Loprinzi CL. A double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of a topical treatment for chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy: NCCTG trial N06CA. (2011) Support Care Cancer; 19(6):833-41. PMID:20496177. PMCID:3338170. DOI:10.1007/s00520-010-0911-0.
  • Barton D. (2011) Oral agents in cancer treatment: the context for adherence. Semin Oncol Nurs. 27(2):104-15. PMID:21514480. DOI:10.1016/j.soncn.2011.02.002.
  • Barton DL, LaVasseur BI, Sloan JA, Stawis AN, Flynn KA, Dyar M, Johnson DB, Atherton PJ, Diekmann B, Loprinzi CL. (2010) Phase III, placebo-controlled trial of three doses of citalopram for the treatment of hot flashes: NCCTG trial N05C9. J Clin Oncol; 28(20):3278-83. PMID:20498389. PMCID:2903326. DOI:10.1200/JCO.2009.26.6379.
  • Barton DL, Soori GS, Bauer BA, Sloan JA, Johnson PA, Figueras C, Duane S, Mattar B, Liu H, Atherton PJ, Christensen B, Loprinzi CL. (2010) Pilot study of Panax quinquefolius (American ginseng) to improve cancer-related fatigue: a randomized, double-blind, dose-finding evaluation: NCCTG trial N03CA. Support Care Cancer; 18(2):179-87. Epub 2009 May 06. PMID:19415341. DOI:10.1007/s00520-009-0642-2.