Center News Magazine: Eric Holland and Alexandra Joyner Elected to the Institute of Medicine

Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Eric Holland Eric Holland

Eric C. Holland and Alexandra L. Joyner have been elected members of the Institute of Medicine (IOM).

Dr. Holland is a neurosurgeon in the Departments of Neurosurgery and Neurology, and the Director of the Brain Tumor Center, as well as a Member in the Cancer Biology and Genetics Program of the Sloan Kettering Institute. He also holds the Emily Tow Jackson Chair in Oncology. As a surgeon, he specializes in the treatment of gliomas, the most common malignant brain tumor in adults, as well as tumors that have metastasized (spread) to the brain from other parts of the body.

In the laboratory, his work focuses on understanding the molecular mechanisms that underlie the development of central nervous system tumors and on developing models of these cancers in mice. He and his colleagues developed a technology called somatic cell gene transfer to create mouse models of many of the subtypes of gliomas.

Dr. Holland received his PhD degree in biochemistry and molecular biology from the University of Chicago and his MD degree from Stanford University School of Medicine. He did two postdoctoral fellowships, one at Stanford in the laboratory of Paul Berg and a second at the National Institutes of Health in the laboratory of now-Memorial Sloan Kettering President Harold Varmus. He joined Memorial Sloan Kettering in 2000.

Alexandra Joyner Alexandra Joyner

Dr. Joyner is a Member in the Developmental Biology Program of SKI. She is a leader in mouse developmental genetics who helped pioneer many of the gene manipulation techniques used today in laboratories around the world. Among her innovations has been the recent development of methods to trace the lineages of specific cells in developing mice.

She has an ongoing interest in understanding normal development of the cerebellum and the abnormalities that give rise to medulloblastoma, a pediatric tumor of the cerebellum, as well as in elucidating the potential of resident adult stem cells to replenish injured tissues.

Dr. Joyner, who also holds the Courtney Steel Chair in Pediatric Cancer Research, received her PhD degree in medical biophysics from the University of Toronto and did postdoctoral training at the University of California, San Francisco. She came to Memorial Sloan Kettering in 2007.

The IOM is a branch of the National Academies and was established to honor professional achievement in the health sciences and to serve as a national resource for recommendations on issues related to medicine, biomedical sciences, and health. Membership in the IOM is considered one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine. Fifteen members of Memorial Sloan Kettering’s faculty are already members of IOM.