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.