Steven Burakoff Named Director of Mount Sinai Medical Center's Cancer Institute

Article ID: 535307

Released: 13-Nov-2007 8:30 AM EST

Source Newsroom: Mount Sinai Health System

Newswise — Steven J. Burakoff, MD, one of the nation's leading cancer specialists, has been named Director of The Mount Sinai Medical Center's Cancer Institute, one of 12 new institutes focused on translational medicine.

Dr. Burakoff's appointment will become effective on December 1.

At Mount Sinai, Dr. Burakoff will spearhead the development of the institution's new Cancer Institute, a state-of-the-art, patient-oriented comprehensive cancer care facility, and will also oversee the expansion of bench-to-bedside medicine in which advances in cancer research will be appropriately applied to the development of novel cancer therapeutics.

"Dr. Burakoff's arrival signals the beginning of a new era in cancer care and research at Mount Sinai," says Kenneth L. Davis, MD, President and CEO of The Mount Sinai Medical Center. "We know he will build upon the work of Mount Sinai's talented cancer care team, and lead us to a higher level of excellence."

"The recruitment of Dr. Steven Burakoff marks a milestone for Mount Sinai as we embark on implementing our strategic plan in biomedical research, education, and clinical care, with a particular focus on cancer care," says Dennis S. Charney, MD, Dean of Mount Sinai School of Medicine and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs of the Medical Center. "The ultimate goal of our Cancer Institute is to discover better treatments for patients with cancer. This will be accomplished through outstanding basic, translational, and clinical research that will improve the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of cancer."

For the last seven years, Dr. Burakoff served as the Director of the New York University Cancer Institute. He was brought to NYU in 2000 following a nationwide search to revitalize both the research and treatment mission of NYU's Cancer Institute, and to regain the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Comprehensive Cancer designation. Under Dr. Burakoff's direction, the NYU Cancer Institute recruited 24 new basic, translational, and clinical investigators, experienced a 31 percent growth in total research funding, and a 50 percent increase in NCI funding.

During Dr. Burakoff's tenure at NYU, there was a more than four-fold increase in Cancer Institute dedicated space, as well as physical and administrative consolidation of multidisciplinary care within the new Clinical Cancer Center there. From 2000 to 2006, Dr. Burakoff also served as the Director of the Skirball Institute of Biomolecular Medicine at NYU's School of Medicine, a research facility dedicated to the study of developmental genetics, neurobiology, pathogenesis, and structural biology.

Dr. Burakoff was recruited from the internationally-renowned Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where he rose from the Chair of the Department of Pediatric Oncology in 1985 to a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees in 1996. From 1995 to 2000, Dr. Burakoff was also the Ted Williams Senior Investigator at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Dr. Burakoff has also held numerous faculty appointments in medicine, pediatrics, and pathology at prestigious institutions such as Harvard Medical School and NYU. He has published extensively on the role of the immune system in cancer. His research interests focus on cellular and molecular immunology, T cell activation and signal transduction, and transplantation immunology.

After earning his medical degree from Albany Medical College in Albany, N.Y., Dr. Burakoff completed his residency in medicine at New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center. He then pursued a clinical fellowship in immunology at Rockefeller University followed by a research fellowship in immunology at Harvard Medical School. He also holds Master's degrees from both Queens College and Harvard University.

About The Mount Sinai Medical CenterThe Mount Sinai Medical Center encompasses The Mount Sinai Hospital and Mount Sinai School of Medicine. The Mount Sinai Hospital is one of the nation's oldest, largest and most-respected voluntary hospitals. Founded in 1852, Mount Sinai today is a 1,171-bed tertiary-care teaching facility that is internationally acclaimed for excellence in clinical care. Last year, nearly 50,000 people were treated at Mount Sinai as inpatients, and there were nearly 450,000 outpatient visits to the Medical Center.

Mount Sinai School of Medicine is internationally recognized as a leader in groundbreaking clinical and basic-science research, as well as having an innovative approach to medical education. With a faculty of more than 3,400 in 38 clinical and basic science departments and centers, Mount Sinai ranks among the top 20 medical schools in receipt of National Institute of Health (NIH) grants.

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