UT Southwestern Medical Center
Jerry W. Shay is an Associate Director of the Harold Simmons NCI Designated Comprehensive Cancer Center, Vice Chairman of the Department of Cell Biology, and the Southland Foundation Distinguished Chair in Aging and Cancer Research at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas Texas. In 2012 he was awarded a University of Texas Regent’s Outstanding Teaching Award, in 2013 the Piper Foundation Professor Award, and in 2015 the Distinguished Basic Science Educator Award. Dr. Shay’s seminal work on the relationships of telomeres and telomerase to aging and cancer is well recognized. His group was the first to develop a robust assay for telomerase and demonstrate that introduction of hTERT alone in normal human cells was sufficient to directly immortalize cells. He was also the first to directly demonstrate that telomere shortening was causal for replicative aging. Finally, his group was also first to demonstrate telomere position effects in human cells along with a novel mechanism regulating telomere length dependent changes in gene expressing involving telomere looping. Dr. Shay received the AlliedSignal Award, the Ted Nash Foundation Award, the American Association of Aging Hayflick Award, the Ellison Medical Foundation Senior Scholar Award, and the Eunice Kennedy Shriver NIH Alliance Pioneer Award. Dr. Shay is on the Scientific Advisory Board for Reata Pharmaceutical and Centaura AG. He is also a Founding Scientist and Scientific Board Member of Barricade Pharmaceuticals, Maia Biotechnology, and Telos Biotechnology.