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Dr. Denise Galloway  

Cancer Researcher & Scientific Director at Pathogen-Associated Malignancies Integrated Research Center

Dr. Denise Galloway studies two viruses that cause cancer: human papillomavirus, or HPV, which causes nearly all cases of cervical cancer and the majority of other genital, tonsil and tongue cancers; and Merkel cell polyomavirus, or MCPyV, which is linked to 80 percent of cases of a rare but aggressive skin cancer called Merkel cell carcinoma, or MCC.

Dr. Galloway’s HPV work helped pave the way for the cancer-preventive HPV vaccine. She was among the first researchers to show that a single HPV protein could form a virus-like particle that is the backbone of the noninfectious HPV vaccine. She also led a team that definitively linked HPV to several cancers and performed studies on the natural history of HPV infections that were critical for designing trials of the first HPV vaccine.

Her work on MCPyV led to a simple blood test that allows oncologists to monitor MCC recurrence. A major aim of her work is to determine the least number of HPV vaccine doses that are required to prevent HPV infection.

As scientific director of the Pathogen-Associated Malignancies Integrated Research Center, she also leads the center’s efforts to extend the success of the HPV vaccine against cervical cancer to other pathogen-associated cancers.

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