Dr. Kucuk conducted the first clinical trials to show the benefits of soy isoflavones and lycopene in prostate cancer treatment.
Titles and Roles
- Professor, Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology
- Emory University School of Medicine
Omer Kucuk, MD, comes to Winship Cancer Institute from the Karmanos Cancer Center at Wayne State University in Detroit where he was a professor and co-leader of the population sciences and prevention program and member of the genitourinary and head and neck cancer multidisciplinary groups. Before joining the medical staff at Wayne State University, Dr. Kucuk served as professor and researcher at the University of Hawaii's John A. Burns School of Medicine in Honolulu.
Dr. Kucuk earned his medical degree at Hacettepe University School of Medicine in Ankara, Turkey. He then went on to Saint Francis Hospital in Evanston, Illinois where he completed both his internship and residency. Dr. Kucuk completed his fellowship at Northwestern University School of Medicine in Chicago, Illinois.
Dr. Kucuk received the Mark Bieber Academic Award from the American College of Nutrition (ACN) in 2009. The award is presented each year by the ACN in recognition of academic excellence and outstanding professional dedication to the fields of nutrition and health. The ACN is comprised of physicians and professionals from many disciplines who share a common interest in promoting nutrition knowledge and its role in maintaining health and treating disease.
Dr. Kucuk has also received the following awards:
- College Teaching Award, Wayne State University
- President’s Achievement Award for Community Research, Karmanos Cancer Institute
- President’s Achievement Award for Outstanding Service, Karmanos Cancer Institute
- Faculty Research Excellence Award, School of Medicine, Wayne State University
Nutrition and cancer therapy are Dr. Kucuk's primary research focus. He has published extensively on various nutrients and botanicals alone and in combination with chemotherapy and radiation. Dr. Kucuk has been conducting preclinical and clinical studies with soy isoflavones, lycopene and other nutritional and botanical compounds since 1996. He is investigating the effects of micronutrients and phytochemicals on biomarkers of cell growth, differentiation, metastasis, inflammation, oxidative stress, DNA methylation and gene expression in a variety of cancers. His research also includes clinical studies on the epigenetic effects of botanicals, physical activity and relaxation techniques such as meditation and yoga.
Dr. Kucuk has more than 200 peer-reviewed publications, review articles and book chapters to his credit, and he is on the editorial boards of several scientific journals, including Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention. He has mentored numerous students, residents and fellows.