Bayard Clarkson, MD, is a member of the Molecular Pharmacology Program in the Sloan Kettering Institute. For over 50 years, his research has focused on the cellular kinetics of growth and differentiation of normal and leukemic cancer cells with the goal of developing improved forms of treatment. He studied the differences between normal and neoplastic stem cells that drove the growth of leukemias.
He is known for his work on the intracellular signaling pathways that are altered by the BCR/ABL fusion genes, which are the primary genetic abnormalities that drive certain types of leukemia.
When Dr. Clarkson joined the Department of Medicine at MSK in the late 1950s, he worked with David Karnofsky, Cornelius Rhoads, and Joseph Burchenal — three pioneers of chemotherapy. He helped develop early effective therapeutic regimens for acute leukemia.
Dr. Clarkson received in MD in 1952 from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. He did his internship and residency at New York Hospital and was a Special Lasker Fellow in Clinical Chemotherapy at MSK in 1958. From 1975 to 1989, Dr. Clarkson was Chief of the Hematology/Lymphoma Service at MSK. He also held the Enid A. Haupt Chair for Therapeutic Research.
Dr. Clarkson was President of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) from 1980 to 1981 and President of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) from 1973 to 1974. He received a Distinguished Service Award from AACR in 2012.