The David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MITThe David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

National Cancer Institute Cancer Center

Science + Engineering... Conquering Cancer Together

The Judith Ann Lippard Memorial Lecture in Cancer Research

The Fifth Annual Judith Ann Lippard Memorial Lecture in Cancer Research

Friday, November 22, 2019, 12-1 pm
Koch Institute Auditorium (76-156)

Ronny Drapkin, MD, PhD
University of Pennsylvania

Dr. Ronny Drapkin is the Franklin Payne Associate Professor of Pathology in Obstetrics & Gynecology at the University of Pennsylvania (Penn) - Perelman School of Medicine. He serves as the director of the Ovarian Cancer Research Center, the director of Gynecological Cancer Research at the Basser Center for BRCA, and the director of the newly awarded Translational Center of Excellence in Ovarian Cancer. His research, teaching, and clinical activities focus on understanding the pathogenesis and genetic alterations involved in women's cancers, with the intent to translate these important biological principles into clinically useful diagnostic and therapeutic tools. Research from the Drapkin lab led to the discovery that the majority of ovarian cancers actually begin in the fallopian tubes. This new concept of pathogenesis has been a paradigm shift in the field and the Drapkin lab has been at the forefront in developing novel model systems that address the role of the FT epithelium and its susceptibility to neoplastic transformation. These platforms include genetically engineered mouse models, fallopian tube-derived cell lines, and patient-derived tumor xenografts. His lab is currently focused on utilizing these models to interrogate how genetic and epigenetic alterations influence lineage dependencies, genomic instability, replicative stress, and tumor metabolism.

Dr. Drapkin received his BA from Brandeis University, followed by MD-PhD degrees from Rutgers University. He completed his residency and fellowship training at Harvard and was on the faculty of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School before joining Penn in 2015. Dr. Drapkin is an elected member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation and is the recipient of numerous awards including the Rosalind Franklin Award for Excellence in Ovarian Cancer Research and the Distinguish Alumnus Award from Rutgers University. He serves on the editorial boards of Cancer Research, Clinical Cancer Research, and Gynecologic Oncology, and has authored over 145 peer-reviewed articles.

About the Lecture

Judith LippardThe Judith Ann Lippard Memorial Lecture was established in 2014 in memory of Judy Lippard, the wife of Stephen J. Lippard, the Arthur Amos Noyes Professor of Chemistry at MIT. Judy died of endometrial cancer on September 9, 2013. Steve, Josh, and Alex Lippard, together with countless friends, students, and colleagues created the lecture to honor Judy’s memory and celebrate her remarkable love of life.

The creation of the Judith Ann Lippard Lecture was inspired by a similar lecture, created in 1974 in memory of Judy’s and Steve’s eldest son, Andrew, who died from a neurological disorder at age 7. Over time, the Andrew Mark Lippard Lecture at Columbia University has become one of the preeminent neurology lectures in the world.

The Judith Ann Lippard Lecture brings together the most innovative minds in cancer research from a variety of disciplines—biology, chemistry, engineering, clinical medicine—and features individuals whose research has the possibility to change the face of cancer. The Lippard Lecture also unites two extraordinary cancer centers—MIT’s Koch Institute and the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center. In addition to the formal lecture at MIT, the honoree delivers Grand Rounds at MGH, and spends time with trainees, researchers, and physician-scientists at both institutions, thus inspiring the best and brightest young minds to advance cancer therapies.


Selection Committee

Tyler Jacks, PhD
Stephen J. Lippard, PhD, ex officio
Daniel A. Haber, MD, PhD
Jonathan Rosand, MD, MSc
Phillip A. Sharp, PhD 

Supporting the Lippard Lectures

To join the Lippard family in celebrating Judy's life and legacy, please contact Lisa Schwarz, Managing Director of Development, Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT: 617-324-7399;, or give online.

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