Patrick Sung, PhD, who left Yale University, was recruited back to the University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio in 2019. A cancer biologist, he hopes to translate the knowledge of genetic mutations, such as BRCA1 and 2, into better clinical care for patients. In just a short amount of time his research has attracted $20.9 million in funding.
Sung came back to Texas with a Recruitment of Established Investigator Award from the Cancer Prevention & Research institute (CPRIT). He serves as Professor of Biochemistry and Structural Biology, Associate Dean for Research and Robert A. Welch Distinguished Chair of Biochemistry. Sung also serves as co-leader of the Cancer Development and Progression Program in the National Cancer Institute—designated Mays Cancer Center. Prior to his move to Yale in 2003, Sung spent 11 years on the UT Health San Antonio faculty.
Focusing on Tumor Suppressors
Patrick Sung’s focus now centers on learning how tumor suppressors, such as BRCA1 and BRCA2, work in normal cells—this will aid researchers to determine risk levels of cancer development for patients facing specific inherited or developed genetic mutations in these genes.
Sung hopes to make material progress by understanding not only how certain genes cause cancer but also by translating this knowledge into therapeutics. Sung studies both the normal roles of BRCA and other comparable tumor suppressors not to mention the continuous quest to learn how such mutations impact their functions.
Now as dean Sung seeks to help others grow and prosper in cancer research. He does a lot of mentoring of younger researchers. At this stage, Yung dives deeper into research with the quest of translating breakthroughs into direct patient benefit.
A Remarkable Journey
Originally from Hong Kong, Sung was educated in England receiving his undergraduate degree in biochemistry from the University of Liverpool and his PhD in clinical biochemistry from the University of Oxford. He joined the faculty of the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston in 1983 and moved to UT Health San Antonio in 1993. Yale University recruited Sung in 2003 becoming the chair of the department of Molecular Biophysics & Biochemistry in that Ivy League school. Now back in Texas, he is on a mission to pursue cancer cures and has already attracted $20.9 million in funding for that research.