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Federico Innocenti, MD, PhD, received the 2013 Leon I. Goldberg Young Investigator Award from the American Society for Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics. Innocenti, associate director for oncology research in the UNC Institute for Pharmacogenomics and Individualized Therapy and a member of UNC Lineberger, was recognized for his work in individualizing therapy for cancer patients.

The ASCPT established the Goldberg award to honor young scientists for early career accomplishments in clinical pharmacology. Recipients receive a $1,000 honorarium and are asked to lecture on their work at the organization’s annual meeting.

The award recognizes Innocenti’s research into the effectiveness and toxicity of chemotherapy by integrating clinical genomic investigation with functional evaluation of genetic variation. Using this approach, Innocenti and his collaborators determined the genetic basis of severe neutropenia, a white blood cell deficiency experienced by cancer patients treated with the drug irinotecan. This work led to a revision of the FDA labeling of irinotecan. He is also the co-inventor of an FDA-approved genetic test for patients treated with irinotecan.

Innocenti joined the UNC faculty in 2011. Previously, he had spent 12 years researching cancer pharmacogenetics at the University of Chicago, where he also directed the pharmacology course for the Pritzker School of Medicine. He received his MD from the University of Pisa and is the author of more than 85 journal articles and book chapters, serves as the sole associate editor of Pharmacogenomics and is one of the associate editors of Frontiers in Pharmacogenetics and Pharmacogenomics. He also sits on the editorial board of the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Pharmacogenetics and Genomics, Therapeutic Drug Monitoring, Current Drug Metabolism, and others.