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Three Abramson Cancer Center Professors Named to Endowed Chairs
September 15, 2009, Volume 56, No. 03



The Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania recently had three of its outstanding faculty named to endowed chairs at the School of Medicine.

Dr. Craig B. Thompson, is the inaugural chair holder of the John H. Glick, M.D., Abramson Cancer Center Director’s Professorship. Dr. Thompson also currently serves as Associate Vice President of Cancer Services at the University of Pennsylvania Health System and is professor of medicine and cancer biology. The chair was created in honor of Dr. John Glick— former director of the Abramson Cancer Center and current Vice President of UPHS and associate dean for resource development at the School of Medicine—in recognition of his extraordinary career and reputation for outstanding patient care.

Receiving his medical degree from Penn in 1977, Dr. Thompson returned in 1999 as a professor of medicine, scientific director of The Leonard and Madlyn Abramson Family Cancer Research Institute, and Penn’s first chair of the department of cancer biology. He has also served as deputy director of the Abramson Cancer Center.

Before coming to Penn, Dr. Thompson was a physician at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, MD, and an assistant professor of medicine at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. He also served as a fellow in hematology and oncology at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center at the University of Washington. He went on to join the faculty of the University of Michigan, where he was a member of the department of medicine and associate investigator in the Howard Hughes Institute. In 1993, he became the director of the Knapp Center at the University of Chicago and Investigator in the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

Dr. Thompson currently serves as chairman of the Medical Advisory Board of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, vice chairman of the GM Cancer Research Prize Committee, a member of the Lasker Prize Jury, and as an associate editor of Cell, Science, Immunity, and Cancer Cell. In addition to his membership in the National Academy of Sciences, he is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Society for Clinical Investigation, and the American Association of Physicians.

Dr. Lewis A. Chodosh has been named to the J. Samuel Staub, M.D., Professorship at the Abramson Cancer Center. An internationally recognized leader in the breast cancer community, Dr. Chodosh’s work in cancer genetics has led to the identification of novel therapeutic targets for aggressive forms of breast cancer as well as a better understanding of how pregnancy alters breast cancer risk. The chair was created thanks to the generous support of the estate of Dr. J. Samuel Staub.

Dr. Chodosh joined the School of Medicine faculty in 1994 and currently serves as associate director for Basic Science and director of the Breast Cancer Research Program for the Abramson Cancer Center. He is also director of Cancer Genetics for the Abramson Family Cancer Research Institute. He holds appointments in the departments of cancer biology, cell and developmental biology, as well as the division of endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism. In 2008, Dr. Chodosh was named chair of the department of cancer biology.

Dr. Chodosh received his medical degree from Harvard Medical School and earned his PhD in biochemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology under the mentorship of Nobel laureate Dr. Phillip Sharp. Dr. Chodosh completed his internship and residency in internal medicine, as well as a clinical fellowship in endocrinology, at the Massachusetts General Hospital. He conducted his postdoctoral research at Harvard Medical School, where he studied transgenic animal models of breast cancer.

Among his many honors and awards, Dr. Chodosh was elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the American Association of Physicians. Dr. Chodosh serves as director of one of four Congressionally-directed Breast Cancer Centers of Excellence and is Principal Investigator of one of the sites of the National Cancer Institute’s Mouse Models of Human Cancer Consortiums.

Dr. Daniel G. Haller has been honored with the Deenie Greitzer Gastrointestinal Medical Oncology Professorship. Over the course of the past 25 years, Dr. Haller has established himself as a figure of national prominence in medical oncology, especially in colon and rectal cancer. He has directed the successful treatment of thousands of patients, and his research has helped to shape the way the entire medical community treats patients with gastrointestinal cancers.

The chair was established by Martin Greitzer in memory of his late wife, Deenie, along with other donors who wished to support excellence in GI cancer research and care at Penn Medicine.

Dr. Haller was recruited to Penn in 1980 by Dr. John Glick. Today, Dr. Haller serves as professor of medicine in the division of hematology/oncology. He is currently serving as editor-in-chief of the Journal of Clinical Oncology, an important medical journal in the field.

Dr. Haller attended the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and did a residency at Georgetown University Hospital. Dr. Haller then completed a two-year fellowship in medical oncology at Georgetown and spent two years at the Clinical Investigations Branch of the National Cancer Institute before coming to Penn.


Almanac - September 15, 2009, Volume 56, No. 03