The PI is Danny N. Dhanasekaran, Ph.D., Professor of Cell Biology, Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation Chair in Cancer Research, Director of the Center for Basic Cancer Research, and Deputy Director for Basic Research at the Stephenson Cancer Center at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, OK. Dr. Dhanasekaran has a long track record of cancer research, which is well funded by NCI. Before moving to OUHSC in 2009, Dr. Dhanasekaran was on the faculty of the Fels Institute for Cancer Research and Molecular Biology at the Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for 17 years. His major research focus has been to define oncogenic signaling pathways involved in cancer cell proliferation and metastasis. He has made major contributions in describing the role the gep oncogenes, defined by the activated mutants of the alpha subunits of G12 and G13, in the regulation of cell proliferation, transformation, and metastasis.
Currently, Dr. Dhanasekaran conducts collaborative and translational research with colleagues at the OUHSC and other universities across the US and abroad. He is the founding editor and the Editor in Chief of Journal on Molecular Signaling. In addition, he serves on the editorial boards of Faculty 1000 and Genes & Cancer. He has also served as review series editor for Oncogene. Dr. Dhanasekaran has served on several peer-review committees of the National Institutes of Health American Heart Association, Komen Foundation, and the Department of Defense.
As a member of the Board of Scientific Counselors of the NCI, he reviewed intramural programs at Oral and Pharyngeal Cancer Branch, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research Bethesda, MD. Dr. Dhanasekaran served as a full member of the Tumor Cell Biology study section at NIH and he is a frequent ad-hoc member of the Tumor Cell Biology study section of the NIH and the Breast and Prostate Cancer Programs of the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs of the Department of Defense. In addition, he has been serving in the review panels of many international funding organizations for biomedical research including those of S. Korea, China, Singapore, and Netherlands.
At present, as the Deputy Director of Basic Research at the Stephenson Cancer Center, Dr. Dhanasekaran is involved in strengthening the research infrastructure of the Stephenson Cancer Center. To date, the PI has mentored 19 postdoctoral fellows, five fellows, six graduate students, and more than 25 undergraduate summer interns. Three of his graduate students have become independent investigators in three different biomedical research institutions. Five of his postdoctoral fellows have joined the faculties at academic institutions and eight others have become directors and program leaders in various pharmaceutical companies.