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Fox Chase Cancer Center Welcomes Amy M. Whitaker, PhD

March 15, 2022

Dr. Amy M. Whitaker joins the Molecular Therapeutics research program and the Cancer Epigenetics Institute as an assistant professorDr. Amy M. Whitaker joins the Molecular Therapeutics research program and the Cancer Epigenetics Institute as an assistant professor

PHILADELPHIA (March 15, 2022) – Fox Chase Cancer Center is pleased to announce the hiring of Amy M. Whitaker, PhD, who will join the Molecular Therapeutics research program and the Cancer Epigenetics Institute as an assistant professor.

As a principal investigator, Whitaker will lead her research team in investigating pressing questions at the intersection of DNA damage, DNA repair, and transcriptional regulation. Their long-term goal is to identify molecular targets that can be exploited to improve cancer therapies.

Before coming to Fox Chase, Whitaker was a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and a member of the KU Cancer Center Cancer Biology Program at the University of Kansas Medical Center (KUMC) in Kansas City, Kansas.

While there, she employed structural biology and enzyme kinetics to reveal novel strategies used by enzymes in the mammalian base excision repair pathway to maintain genome stability. The results were reported in 10 peer-reviewed publications and 32 deposited X-ray structures in the Protein Data Bank.

Whitaker has been published in numerous peer-reviewed journals, including Nature Communications, Nucleic Acids Research, and DNA Repair. She has made multiple podium presentations and taught both graduate and medical students at KUMC.

She is a co-chair for the Environmental Mutagenesis and Genomics Society’s DNA repair special interest group. She received a National Institutes of Health K99/R00 Pathway to Independence Award in 2020.

Whitaker earned her doctorate in biochemistry and biophysics from Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. She received her Bachelor of Science in chemistry from the University of St. Thomas in Houston and worked as both an undergraduate researcher in the department and as a phlebotomist at the MD Anderson Cancer Center during that time.

Whitaker began work at Fox Chase in March 2022.

Fox Chase Cancer Center (Fox Chase), which includes the Institute for Cancer Research and the American Oncologic Hospital and is a part of Temple Health, is one of the leading comprehensive cancer centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as one of the nation’s first cancer hospitals, Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. Fox Chase is also one of just 10 members of the Alliance of Dedicated Cancer Centers. Fox Chase researchers have won the highest awards in their fields, including two Nobel Prizes. Fox Chase physicians are also routinely recognized in national rankings, and the Center’s nursing program has received the Magnet recognition for excellence five consecutive times. Today, Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach. It is the policy of Fox Chase Cancer Center that there shall be no exclusion from, or participation in, and no one denied the benefits of, the delivery of quality medical care on the basis of race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity/expression, disability, age, ancestry, color, national origin, physical ability, level of education, or source of payment.

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