NIH Record - National Institutes of Health

Nov. 28

Sharpless to Deliver 2018 Mahoney Lecture on Aging

Dr. Ned Sharpless smiles
Dr. Ned Sharpless

Dr. Ned Sharpless, director of the National Cancer Institute, will deliver a lecture, “Senescence: Live fast, die young and leave a good-looking corpse,” on Nov. 28 at 3 p.m. in Masur Auditorium, Bldg. 10. His presentation is the annual Florence Mahoney Lecture on Aging, sponsored by NIA and part of the NIH Director’s Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series.

In addition to serving as director of NCI, Sharpless continues his research as chief of the aging biology and cancer section of NIA’s Laboratory of Genetics and Genomics. The lab studies the biology of the aging process that promotes the conversion of normal self-renewing cells into dysfunctional cancer cells. The lab also studies pharmacological approaches to protecting stem cells in vivo and is working to characterize circular RNAs, a novel form of non-coding RNA. Sharpless has made seminal contributions to the understanding of the relationship between aging and cancer and in the preclinical development of novel therapeutics for melanoma, lung cancer and breast cancer.

Sharpless was named NCI director in 2017. Prior to his appointment, he served as director of the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, a position he held since January 2014. He has authored more than 150 original scientific papers, reviews and book chapters and is an inventor on 10 patents. He cofounded two clinical-stage biotechnology companies: G1 Therapeutics and HealthSpan Diagnostics.   

Sharpless earned his undergraduate degree and his medical degree at UNC. He completed his internal medicine residency at Massachusetts General Hospital and a hematology/oncology fellowship at Dana-Farber/Partners Cancer Care in Boston, part of Harvard Medical School.

He is a fellow with the American Association of Cancer Research, an elected member of the American Society of Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians and an immediate past member of NIA’s National Advisory Council on Aging.

The annual Mahoney Lecture is named in honor of Florence Stephenson Mahoney (1899-2002). She devoted the last half of her life to successfully advocating for the creation of NIA and increased support for NIH.

There will be a reception and an opportunity to talk with Sharpless in the NIH Library following the lecture.

The NIH Record

The NIH Record, founded in 1949, is the biweekly newsletter for employees of the National Institutes of Health.

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