TAMPA, Fla. Dorina Avram, Ph.D., has joined Moffitt Cancer Center as the new vice chair of the Department of Immunology. In the new role, she will work closely with department chair Jose R. Conejo-Garcia, M.D., Ph.D., to grow the department and accelerate discoveries. Additionally, Avram will have a secondary appointment in the Department of Gastrointestinal Oncology.

Immunology has been a fast-growing area of research and has led to many new immunotherapies to battle cancer. Cancer is complex and can often evade immune surveillance. Immunotherapies help improve the immune system’s ability to detect and eliminate cancer. Moffitt’s Department of Immunology includes an interactive group of basic immunologists focusing on novel mechanisms governing the immunobiology of solid and hematological malignancies to develop the next generation of immunotherapeutic interventions for cancer patients.

Avram’s research interests are focused on the transcriptional and epigenetic control of immune cell fate and function and of T-cell differentiation and plasticity. She also has robust experience in evaluating the roles of transcriptional and epigenetic regulators in T-cell responses and in tumor immune surveillance.

“We are excited to work with a world-class expert in the genetic and epigenetic mechanisms that govern the immune response, including against human cancer. Dr. Avram’s expertise is particularly relevant for the development of superior cellular therapies and novel immune checkpoint blockade interventions conducted at Moffitt,” said Conejo-Garcia.

Avram joins Moffitt from the University of Florida, where she was vice chair of the Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology in the College of Medicine. Prior to UF, she was a faculty member at Albany Medical College.

She earned her Ph.D. in genetics from Oregon State University and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in molecular pharmacology at Oregon State University College of Pharmacy.

About Moffitt Cancer Center
Moffitt is dedicated to one lifesaving mission: to contribute to the prevention and cure of cancer. The Tampa-based facility is one of only 51 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers, a distinction that recognizes Moffitt’s scientific excellence, multidisciplinary research, and robust training and education. Moffitt is the No. 11 cancer hospital and has been nationally ranked by U.S. News & World Report since 1999. Moffitt’s expert nursing staff is recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center with Magnet® status, its highest distinction. With more than 7,000 team members, Moffitt has an economic impact in the state of $2.4 billion. For more information, call 1-888-MOFFITT (1-888-663-3488), visit MOFFITT.org, and follow the momentum on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube