The May Goldman Shaw Distinguished Professor of Molecular Oncology
Co-director of the Computational Medicine Program
Faculty Director of the UNC Lineberger Bioinformatics Group
Co-director of the UNC Lineberger Breast Cancer Research Program
Department of Genetics
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
In recognition of his seminal contributions to our understanding of breast cancer biology and treatment and his pioneering research in cancer genomics. Using RNA expression profiling, Perou reclassified breast tumors into five biologically distinct subtypes. He established the prognostic applicability of these findings with the development of the 50-gene Prediction Analysis of Microarray (PAM50) assay, which is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to predict metastasis in a subset of breast cancer patients. He successfully identified the association of the PAM50 basal-like breast cancer subtype with triple-negative breast cancer and germline BRCA1 mutation-associated cancers. Perou was the breast cancer leader of The Cancer Genome Atlas Program, and he leveraged the database to discover that basal-like breast cancers are associated with molecular events that are genetically distinct from other breast cancers and possess similarities to similar genetic insults in ovarian cancer. Further, his finding that basal-like breast cancer is overrepresented in Black women has laid the foundation for understanding intrinsic subtype contributions to racial disparities in breast cancer outcomes..
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