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Professor of Cancer Policy and Innovation
UNC-Chapel Hill
Molecular Therapeutics

Area of Interest

Norman E. (Ned) Sharpless, MD, is the Professor of Cancer Policy and Innovation at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine. He is interested in cancer therapeutics, novel cancer diagnostics and the intersection of healthcare policy and cancer care.

Dr. Sharpless is the former Director of the National Cancer Institute (2017-2022) and Acting Commissioner of Food and Drugs the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (2019). Before that appointment, Dr. Sharpless was the Director of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center (2014-2017), and a Wellcome Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Genetics at UNC-Chapel Hill (2012-2017).

Dr. Sharpless was a Morehead-Cain Scholar at UNC-Chapel Hill, earning his undergraduate degree in mathematics (with distinction) and his medical degree (with honors and distinction) from the UNC School of Medicine. He completed his residency training at Massachusetts General Hospital and his clinical and research fellowship in hematology and oncology at Dana-Farber/Partners Cancer Care in Boston.

Find publications on PubMed

Awards and Honors

Sharpless is a member of the Association of American Physicians, the American Society for Clinical Investigation, the American Association for Cancer Research Academy, and the National Academy of Medicine.

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Headshot of Ned Sharpless.