In 2022 at the White House, President Joe Biden met with researchers and patients to discuss ARPA-H, a then-new health research agency dealing with curing cancer. On Friday, Biden said he plans to appoint Vanderbilt University's Dr. Kimryn Rathmell as the new director of the National Cancer Institute. File Photo by Chris Kleponis/UPI | License Photo
Nov. 17 (UPI) -- President Joe Biden said on Friday he plans to appoint Vanderbilt University's Dr. Kimryn Rathmell as the new director of the National Cancer Institute.
Rathmell currently is physician-in-chief at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center, in Nashville, along as chair of the university's Department of Medicine.
The White House said she is an internationally recognized expert in kidney cancer with her research focused on the underlying drivers of kidney cancers by using genetic, molecular and cell biology.
"Dr. Rathmell is the talented and visionary leader the National Cancer Institute needs to drive us toward ending cancer as we know it," Biden said in a statement.
"Throughout her career, she has been committed to advancing discovery through scientific research, maintaining a steadfast commitment to caring for her patients, and demonstrating leadership in preparing the next generation of researchers."
Rathmell has held leadership positions with the National Institute of Health Cancer Genome Atlas, the National Cancer Institute's Board of Scientific Advisers, as well as part of the Department of Defense Kidney Cancer Research Program.
"She embodies the promise of the Biden Cancer Moonshot and has spent her career driving toward the goals Jill and I set for the initiative, to improve outcomes and boost support for those facing a cancer diagnosis," Biden said.
"The National Cancer Institute is central to the success of the Cancer Moonshot and Dr. Rathmell will lead the agency towards new ways to prevent, detect, and treat cancer and to ensure we reach more Americans with the tools we have to save and extend lives."
Biden has been active in addressing cancer during his presidency. HIs administration in August launched a $24 million "moonshot" research initiative to train mRNA to fight cancer, autoimmune disorders and infectious diseases.
The new Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health program, called "Curing the Incurable via RNA-Encoded Immunogene Tuning" or CUREIT, is part of Biden's Unity Agenda and Cancer Moonshot program.