Peter Mac News

Professor Mark Dawson creates history with prestigious cancer research award

14 November 2023

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Peter Mac’s Professor Mark Dawson has become the first Australian to be awarded the Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) Cancer Center’s prestigious Paul Marks Prize for cancer research.

The prize recognises a new generation of leaders in cancer research around the world who are making significant contributions to the understanding of cancer, or are improving the treatment of the disease through research.

Head of the Cancer Biology and Therapeutics Program and Cancer Epigenetics Laboratory at Peter Mac, Professor Dawson’s innovative investigations have led to the development of a novel class of cancer drugs called epigenetic inhibitors for treating a range of cancers, including acute myeloid leukemia.

“I am really proud to receive this prize which is largely thanks to my lab and a testament to incredible people who I have had the pleasure to work with,” Professor Dawson said.

“It’s a great honour to be recognised by a renowned organisation like MSK and have the opportunity to showcase the important work we do here at Peter Mac on an international stage.”

Peter Mac Executive Director Cancer Research, Professor Ricky Johnstone, said Professor Dawson’s achievement was richly deserved and is a testament to his amazing contributions to cancer research over many years.

“We are thrilled for Mark to be recognised for his tremendous impact on fundamental, translational and clinical cancer research and become the first Australian to win this highly-regarded prize,” he said.

“Professor Dawson and his team should feel extremely proud for the significant difference they’ve made, and will continue to make, to the lives of people living with cancer.”

MSK is one of the world’s most respected comprehensive centres based in New York devoted exclusively to cancer. The recipients of the Paul Marks Prize - named in honour of the distinguished scientist and leader who served as President of MSK for nearly two decades - are selected by a panel of senior investigators from leading research institutions around the world.

Professor Dawson will present his work at a lecture hosted by MSK in March 2024.