Ronald A. DePinho

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Ronald A. DePinho

Ronald A. DePinho, M.D., president of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, is internationally recognized for basic and translational research in cancer, aging and age-associated degenerative disorders.

DePinho became president on Sept. 1, 2011.[1] He is only the fourth full-time president in the 70-year history of MD Anderson.[2]

Prior to joining MD Anderson, he spent 14 years at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School in Boston. There, he was founding director of the Belfer Institute for Applied Cancer Science at Dana-Farber and was a professor in the Department of Medicine (genetics) at Harvard and an American Cancer Society Research Professor. Previously, he held numerous faculty positions during 10 years at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

He currently has a salary of $1,845,000.[3]


At Dana-Farber and Harvard, DePinho guided major basic-translational research programs focused on brain, colorectal, pancreatic and prostate cancers. Under his leadership, the Belfer Institute followed industry-like principles to systematically translate basic research findings into clinical endpoints.

His scientific program has made fundamental discoveries underlying cancer in the aged and factors governing acquired and inherited degenerative disorders. He established the concept of tumor maintenance, discovered a core pathway of aging and demonstrated that aging is a reversible process.[4] He has constructed and used refined mouse models of cancer to identify many new cancer targets and diagnostics.


DePinho was born in the Bronx, N.Y in 1955 to Celeste and Alvaro DePinho. He is the third of five children. He earned a bachelor's degree in biological sciences in 1977 from Fordham University, where he graduated summa cum laude as class salutatorian. He received his medical degree with distinction in microbiology and immunology in 1981 from Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

He completed an internship and residency in internal medicine at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center, followed by postdoctoral fellowships in the Department of Cell Biology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center.

DePinho's independent scientific career began at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where he was the Feinberg Senior Scholar in Cancer Research. There, he established the first National Cancer Institute-supported shared transgenic and gene targeting facility, which enabled his laboratory and many other researchers to model and study the genetic basis of cancer and other complex diseases.

Awards and honors[edit]

Select publications[edit]


  1. ^ "Incoming MD Anderson chief sets challenge for institution". The Houston Chronicle. Retrieved Sep 1, 2011. 
  2. ^ "MD Anderson's Past Presidents". The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Retrieved Sep 1, 2011. 
  3. ^ . The Austin American Statesman Retrieved July 21, 2014.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. ^ "Partial reversal of aging achieved in mice". Harvard Gazette. Retrieved Sep 1, 2011. 
  5. ^ "p53 and Pten control neural and glioma stem/progenitor cell renewal and differentiation". Nature. Retrieved Sep 1, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Chromosomally unstable mouse tumours have genomic alterations similar to diverse human cancers". Nature. Retrieved Sep 1, 2011. 
  7. ^ "Telomere dysfunction and Atm deficiency compromises organ homeostasis and accelerates aging". Nature. Retrieved Sep 1, 2011. 

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