Janet Davison Rowley will receive the 2009 Presidential Medal of Freedom for her discovery of recurring chromosomal abnormalities in leukemias and lymphomas, the White House announced last week.
"By showing that unique genetic abnormalities are the root cause of cancer, Rowley laid the foundation for personalized cancer care and targeted therapy," Richard Schilsky, professor of medicine at the University of Chicago and past president of the American Society for Clinical Oncology, said in a statement.
Rowley is a distinguished service professor of medicine at the University of Chicago's division of molecular genetics, cell biology and human genetics. She has received many honors for her work in genetics, including both the Lasker Award and the National Medal of Science in 1998, as well as this year's Genetics Prize from the Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation. At the University of Chicago, Rowley is the head of a laboratory that researches the genetic underpinnings of cancer, particularly leukemia.
President Barack Obama will award the Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor, to Rowley on August 12.
Exact Sciences announced this week the appointment of Graham Lidgard as the company’s chief scientific officer.
Previously Lidgard was head of research and development at Gen-Probe, as well as co-founder and vice president of product development of Matritech.