William S. Dynan, PhD

Titles and Roles

Professor, Department of Radiation Oncology
Emory University School of Medicine
Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar
Georgia Research Alliance
Research Program
Cancer Genetics and Epigenetics


William S. Dynan, PhD is a Professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Emory University School of Medicine and a Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar.

Dr. Dynan is a member of the Cancer Genetics and Epigenetics research program at Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University.


Dr. Dynan received his PhD in Oncology from University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI. He conducted his postodoctoral training in Biochemistry at University of California, Berkeley, CA.


Notable career achievements include the discovery of the first human promoter-selective transcription factor, Sp1 (in the 1980s), and the discovery that Ku protein functions as the regulatory subunit of the DNA-dependent protein kinase (in the 1990s). The latter led to the laboratory's current research in DNA repair and radiation biology. Using biochemical complementation approaches similar to those that identified Sp1 and the regulatory subunit of DNA-PK, the laboratory more recently identified a complex of human RNA binding proteins that functions directly in DNA repair. They have now established genetic systems for studying the role of these proteins in the DNA damage response in cells and mice.

In other projects, the laboratory is screening for inhibitors of DNA repair for use as clinical radiosensitizers and investigating how high charge and energy particles influence cancer risk. The laboratory is also part of a multi-investigator NIH Nanomedicine Center that is designing validating a set of technologies that harness the DNA repair machinery to correct single gene disorders, with a focus on sickle cell disease.


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