American Cancer Society Honors Cleveland Clinic Researcher Charis Eng

Posted on October 18, 2018


Cleveland Clinic -- Charis Eng, MD, PhD, Founding Chair of Cleveland Clinic’s Genomic Medicine Institute, Founding Director of the Center for Personalized Genetic Healthcare, and internationally recognized leader in the cancer genetics field, has received the American Cancer Society’s prestigious Medal of Honor award. 

The annual award recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions in basic cancer research, clinical research and cancer control. Dr. Eng was honored alongside four other distinguished recipients: The Honorable Joseph R. Biden Jr., Emmanuelle Charpentier, PhD, Jennifer Doudna, PhD, and Michael J. Thun, MD.

Past honorees include President George H.W. Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush; Senator Edward M. Kennedy; George Papanicolau, MD, inventor of the Pap test; Judah Folkman, MD, a leading researcher in the field of antiangiogenesis; and former U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, MD.

Dr. Eng, who holds the Sondra J. and Stephen R. Hardis Endowed Chair of Cancer Genomic Medicine, has led many groundbreaking clinical and scientific discoveries throughout her career. Notable contributions include:

  • Discovering the relationship between PTEN gene mutations, Cowden syndrome and risks of specific cancers;
  • Linking multiple genes to the predisposition of specific cancers;
  • Launching a patient-centered, web-based family history tool backed by disease risk assessment and decision support at the point of care;
  • Deepening understanding of the role of bacterial composition in cancer and the potential of manipulating the microbiome to alter cancer progression.

“Charis is a true pioneer in cancer genomics, especially integrating the study of genetics into clinical care,” says Serpil Erzurum, MD, Chair of Cleveland Clinic’s Lerner Research Institute. 

“As a physician-scientist for over 20 years, she has dedicated her career to patient-oriented research in genetics and genomic medicine. She also has an unparalleled passion for mentoring the next generation of physician-scientists, PhDs, clinical researchers and healthcare leaders.”

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