William Hahn, MD, PhD

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William Hahn

Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard University; Senior Associate Member, Broad Insititute of Harvard and Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Director, Center for Cancer Genome Discovery, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Harvard University; Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Dana-Farber Cancer Institute


Dr. Hahn received his MD and PhD from Harvard Medical School in 1994. He then completed clinical training in internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital and medical oncology at Dana Farber Cancer Institute. He conducted his postdoctoral studies with Dr. Robert Weinberg at the Whitehead Institute and joined the faculty of DFCI and Harvard Medical School in 2001.


My laboratory has focused on developing and using comprehensive tools to study the function and cooperation of genetic alterations in malignant transformation. By manipulating the expression of telomerase, oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes, we have created engineered cancer cell lines of defined genetic constitution. Such engineered cancer cell lines not only allow us to define the minimal changes necessary to induce cell transformation but also allow the construction of experimental models that recapitulate human tumors. Indeed, we have shown that such models are useful not only for defining the function of specific cancer genes but also as a platform for discovering new drugs.