Welcome Dr. Michael Deininger, MD, PhD,
Our new Chief of the Division of Hematology and Hematologic Malignancies
We would like to welcome our new Division Chief, Dr. Michael Deininger, MD, Phd, who replaces Dr. James Kushner, who served as division chief for over 23 years.
Dr. Deininger’s previous position was Associate Professor and Head of the Hematologic Malignancies Section at Oregon Health and Science University. He has a long standing interest in the biology and treatment of leukemia.
Dr. Deininger earned his medical degree from Wuerzburg University Medical School in Germany in 1990. He trained in Internal Medicine, Hematology /Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplantation at Nuremberg General Hospital and the University of Leipzig Medical School. He has extensive experience treating patients with hematologic malignancies, including acute and chronic leukemias and lymphomas. His main scientific interest is chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) and other myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPN) such as chronic myelomonocytic leukemia and myelofibrosis.
In addition to his clinical training, Dr. Deininger received a PhD in leukemia biology from Imperial College, London and currently is a Scholar in Clinical Research of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. His maintains an extramurally funded laboratory that studies the molecular biology of leukemia to develop new and more effective therapies with fewer side effects. Specific research interests include signal transduction in CML, resistance to imatinib (Gleevec) and other tyrosine kinase inhibitors, the development of molecularly targeted therapy for hematologic malignancies other than CML and the identification of biomarkers to select the optimal therapy for each individual patient.
As the new Chief of the Division of Hematology and Hematologic Malignancies, Dr. Deininger envisions
“to put the University of Utah on the international map of leukemia and lymphoma research and treatment. We already have strength in certain areas and will build on this strength to develop a program that offers cutting edge diagnostics and therapy to all patients with hematologic cancer. Our mission as an academic center is to make sure all patients who seek our care benefit from the latest progress in cancer research. Fortunately, we can rely on a team of experienced leukemia and lymphoma clinicians, and we will add strength to this as we build our programs”.
Dr. Deininger believes that the treatment of hematologic cancer will change radically over the next decade:
“The more we learn about cancer, the more we understand that the ‘one shoe fits all’ paradigm is outdated. The future is personalized therapy that is based on a detailed understanding of what went wrong in each individual patient’s disease. I see our Division and the Huntsman Cancer Institute taking a lead in this process of individualizing therapy of hematologic malignancies.”
Dr. Deininger has numerous awards and professional achievements including: Scholar of the Mildred Scheel Foundation for Cancer Research (1995-1997), Scholar of the American Society of Hematology (2004), Member of the East German Study Group Hematology/Oncology (OSHO) (1999), Chronic Leukemia Working Party (CLWP) of the European Blood and Marrow Transplantation Group (EBMT) (2000), American Society of Hematology (ASH) (2000). He is also a peer reviewer for Blood, Nature Genetics, The Lancet, Cancer Research and other journals.
Dr. Deininger is certified in Internal Medicine and Hematology/Oncology (EU), and is fluent in English, German, and Russian, with basic knowledge of Polish and Spanish. In his spare time, he enjoys activities with his wife, who is a nurse and gynecologist, and their three children. They enjoy hiking, climbing and traveling as time allows.
September 20, 2010