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Vol. LXIII, No. 18
September 2, 2011

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DePinho Gives Aging, Cancer Talk on Sept. 14 in Masur

Dr. Ronald DePinho

At his Sept. 14 lecture, Dr. Ronald DePinho will present “Genotoxic Stress Meets Mitochondria: Integrating Aging Mechanisms.”

Dr. Ronald A. DePinho, a distinguished scientist whose work includes major discoveries of fundamental importance to cancer medicine, aging and degenerative disorders, will deliver the 24th annual Florence Mahoney Lecture on Aging on Wednesday, Sept. 14 at 3 p.m. in Masur Auditorium, Bldg. 10.

Until recently, DePinho was director of the Belfer Institute for Applied Cancer Science at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and a professor of medicine and genetics at Harvard Medical School, where he held the American Cancer Society research professorship. On Sept. 1, he became president of MD Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas in Houston.

DePinho’s research program is a leader in the field of molecular genetics and in the development of mouse models of human cancer. The program has constructed a model of how telomeres, stem cells and mitochondria interact with key molecules governing genome integrity, “stemness” and metabolism to provide a framework for how diverse factors contribute to aging and age-related disorders.

His work is of interest to the cancer and aging research communities. More recently, his studies caught the eye of the popular press; on Jan. 6, DePinho appeared on The Colbert Report to explain his research about reversing the aging process in mice. With an exchange that featured irreverent remarks by host Stephen Colbert, DePinho’s good humor and clear explanations introduced viewers of the comedy show to chromosomes, shortened telomeres and engineered mice.

At his Sept. 14 lecture, DePinho will present “Genotoxic Stress Meets Mitochondria: Integrating Aging Mechanisms.” The talk is part of the NIH Director’s Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series and is sponsored by NIA and the NIH Office of the Director.

DePinho received his undergraduate degree at Fordham University, where he majored in biology. He went on to earn his M.D. degree, with distinction in microbiology and immunology, from Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He completed his research training at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital.

His independent scientific career began at Albert Einstein where he was the Feinberg senior scholar in cancer research. There, he launched the first shared mouse genome engineering facility, enabling the community to model and study the genetic basis of cancer.

DePinho, a former member of the board of directors of the American Association for Cancer Research, was chair of the advisory boards for the NCI Mouse Models of Human Cancer Consortium and more recently of the advisory committee of the Cancer Genome Atlas Project.

Notable honors and awards presented to him include the Albert Szent-Gyorgyi Prize for Progress in Cancer Research (2009), Harvey Lecture (2007), Helsinki Medal (2007), Albert Einstein College of Medicine Distinguished Alumnus Award (2004) and American Cancer Society Edith A. Pistorino Research Professorship (2004). In 2010, DePinho was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and in 2004 to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences. A prolific author, he has published more than 250 peer-reviewed journal articles as well as books, chapters and reviews.

DePinho is a founder of several biotechnology companies focused on cancer therapy and diagnostics including Aveo Pharmaceuticals, Eden Therapeutics, Metamark Genetics and Karyopharm Therapeutics. He has also played an advisory role for oncology portfolios of several large pharmaceutical companies.

There will be an opportunity to meet the speaker at a reception following his lecture. NIHRecord Icon

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