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Wafik El-Deiry, MD, Earns Prestigious Smith Chair in Cancer Research

Fox Chase Cancer Center celebrated the investiture of Wafik S. El-Deiry, MD, PhD, FACP, deputy cancer center director and head of translational research, as the William Wikoff Smith Chair in Cancer Research on November 15. This chair supports and outstanding leader who represents the highest standard of excellence in academic cancer research. 

Wafik El-Deiry with his teamWafik El-Deiry with his team

One of Fox Chase’s most generous and consistent supporters, the W.W. Smith Charitable Trust establishedthis chair in 1998 as a powerful demonstration of the Smith family's confidence in our faculty and to advance the philanthropic vision of its founder William Wikoff Smith (1920-1976), a Philadelphia businessman. 

“This particular chair has a history of impact from the work of Kenneth Zaret and Ann Skalka. I am honored to follow in their footsteps,” El-Deiry said. “We will continue to make discoveries that lead to treatment for patients. It really is one of the most exciting things to discover a new chemical in the lab and have it get to clinical trials and hear that some patients are responding. I’m so thrilled to be living through that.”

El-Deiry joined Fox Chase in 2014, bringing with him a team of 15 lab researchers and multiple funded grants. During their first two years at Fox Chase, El-Deiry and his team have set the pace for translational research, publishing 23 peer reviewed papers in 2015 and 2016 alone.

“Our research efforts have been enhanced because of the perspective he brings to Fox Chase,” said Richard I. Fisher, MD, president and CEO of Fox Chase Cancer Center. “Wafik has lived up to his reputation as a translational researcher who gets things done, and he is generous to a fault with his time and energy. We are so grateful to Wafik for his contributions to clinical trials and new drug development.”