Funda Meric-Bernstam, MD
Photo: Funda Meric-Bernstam



Elected 2016

Funda Meric-Bernstam is the Chair of the Department of Investigational Cancer Therapeutics (the Phase I Program) at MD Anderson Cancer Center, the Medical Director of the Institute for Personalized Cancer Therapy (IPCT), and Professor in the Divisions of Cancer Medicine and Surgery at MD Anderson Cancer Center.   She has a basic and translational research program that is focused on molecular therapeutics, predominantly on PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling, to delineate the mechanism of action of each agent targeting this pathway and the molecular alterations useful to prospectively identify patients who will benefit most from each agent, and optimal combination therapies.

Her research to identify a range of molecular markers for predisposition testing, disease screening and prognostic assessment, as well as markers used to predict and monitor drug response, is being fostered through numerous efforts.  As the Medical Director of IPCT, she has not only led large efforts of genomic testing within the institution, but has a) helped build a framework for rapid assessment of actionability of genomic alterations; b) established a Precision Oncology Decision Support Team who can provide point of care input for actionability; c) launched the public website “” providing access to expert curation of information on therapeutic relevance of specific genes/variants; d) created databases and clinical trial alert systems to facilitate accrual to genotype-selected trials across the institution; and e) monitors trial enrollment after genomic testing to identify approaches to obstacles to trial enrollment.

She has participated in, as well as led, trials including investigator-initiated trials, cooperative group trials, and industry-sponsored trials. These trials have ranged from a window of opportunity trials, neoadjuvant therapy trials, a Phase I and II trials in the advanced cancer setting as well as new surgical techniques, new imaging devices and molecular diagnostics.