Dr. Bruce E. Johnson, M.D.

Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Director of the Lowe Center for Thoracic Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Leader of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center Lung Cancer Program

Director and Principal Investigator of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) in Lung Cancer

Graduating from Harvard University, Dr. Johnson earned his medical degree from the University of Minnesota in 1979. He continued his education through an internship and residencies in internal medicine at the University of Chicago Hospitals and Clinics. From 1982 to 1985, he was a Clinical Associate at the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Dr. Johnson spent 17 years in the NCI-Navy Medical Oncology Branch of the Naval Hospital in Bethesda, Maryland, serving as Acting Director in 1991. He came to the Lowe Center at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in 1998, after serving for six years as the head of the Lung Cancer Biology section of the NCI’s Medicine Branch.

Dr. Johnson’s laboratory-based research is devoted to testing novel therapeutic agents for their efficacy against lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies. His group was among those that discovered that patients with partial and complete responses to the epidermal growth factor receptor inhibitors gefitinib and erlotinib have mutations in the epidermal growth factor receptor. These discoveries have been licensed to Genzyme which provides testing to identify patients with lung cancers to help select the initial treatment for patients with advanced disease. Dr. Johnson leads a research team that is applying these findings to the clinical treatment of patients with lung cancer. Under his leadership, the Lowe Center for Thoracic Oncology has recently launched the “genomics initiative”, with the goal to first, expand the percentage of patients undergoing genomic characterization and second, to put more patients on trials with genomic eligibility criteria.

Dr. Johnson is the author of more than 250 articles, chapters, reviews, and editorials. He is currently an External Scientific Committee for the NCI National Human Genome Research Institute Project Characterizing Cancer Genomes. Dr. Johnson recently completed a 3 year term on the ASCO Board of Directors in 2008 and received the ASCO Cancer Foundation’s Translational Research Professorship in 2008. Dr. Johnson was the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer Scientific Award for his life-time scientific contribution in thoracic malignancy research in 2009 and was one of the leaders of the DF/HCC AACR Team Science Award in 2010.

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