Charles J. Sherr, MD, PhD
Herrick Foundation Chair, Department of Tumor Cell Biology, and Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee
A research pioneer who has changed the way the mechanics of the cell cycle and the genesis of cancer are viewed, Dr. Sherr’s breakthroughs have led to methods for molecularly targeting and attacking tumor growth. His discoveries of two major tumor suppressive pathways that, when mutated, result in human cancer, offer promise of new therapies designed to make cells more sensitive to the many conventional forms of anti-cancer therapy that act by damaging the DNA of tumor cells.
A visit to the laboratory of Nobel Laureate Harold Varmus in 1975 encouraged Dr. Sherr to study retroviral oncogenes and to investigate how their normal cellular counterparts control cell proliferation. His subsequent discoveries of the receptor for colony-stimulating factor-1 (FMS oncogene), D-type cyclins, cyclin-dependent kinase-4 (CDK4), several polypeptide CDK inhibitors, and the ARF tumor suppressor helped to reveal how mammalian cells respond to extracellular cues in regulating their cell division cycle. Many such growth regulatory genes are used by clinicians today for the diagnosis and targeted treatments of different cancers. Dr. Sherr is currently studying the activity of particular tumor suppressors in governing cell line establishment, senescence, stem cell biology, and protecting against oncogenic insults.
2010 Elected Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science2004 Elected Member, Institute of Medicine2004 Charles S. Mott Prize, General Motors Cancer Research Foundation2003 AACR-Kirk A. Landon Prize for Basic Cancer Research2000 Bristol Myers-Squibb Achievement Award for Basic Cancer Research2000 Pezcoller Foundation-AACR International Award in Cancer Research2000 Ernst W. Bertner Award for Cancer Research, MD Anderson Cancer Center1995 Elected Member, National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC1994 Elected Fellow, American Society for Microbiology1991 Elected Member, American Association of Physicians1989 Milken Family Award for Basic Cancer Biology1987 Damashek Prize, American Association of Hematology1986 Elected Member, American Society for Clinical Investigation1972 MD, New York University School of Medicine1972 PhD, New York University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences