Kathleen R. Cho, MD., is the Peter A. Ward Professor of Pathology and Vice-Chair for Academic Affairs in the Department of Pathology at the University of Michigan Medical School. Dr. Cho is widely recognized as a leading authority in both the basic and clinical study of gynecologic malignancies. Her research focuses primarily on ovarian cancer. In early work, her group generated comprehensive molecular profiles of human ovarian carcinomas, demonstrating distinct molecular profiles in ovarian cancer subtypes. Mutations dysregulating the canonical Wnt and PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling pathways were found to often co-occur in endometrioid ovarian carcinomas. Dr. Cho and her co-workers subsequently used this information to engineer novel mouse models of ovarian endometrioid carcinoma, and developed the system for testing new targeted therapeutics and studying effects of additional genetic alterations on tumor behavior. More recently, her team has generated innovative mouse models of oviductal high-grade serous carcinoma, the most common and lethal type of “ovarian” cancer, that usually arises in the fallopian tube. These unique murine models are being used to study ovarian tumor biology and to explore novel approaches for prevention, early detection and treatment of high-grade serous carcinoma.
Dr. Cho’s research has been supported by grants from the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the Ovarian Cancer Research Program (OCRP) of the Department of Defense (DoD) and several private foundations. She has served on a number of NIH and DoD study sections, and on committees to assess the status of ovarian cancer research for the Institute of Medicine and the NCI/International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). She is currently serving a second term on the Programmatic Panel for the DoD’s OCRP. Dr. Cho is an editorial board member of several journals, and is a Senior Editor at Cancer Research. She has been elected to leadership/advisory positions in top national/international pathology societies. She is an actively practicing surgical pathologist and heads the gynecologic pathology section at Michigan Medicine. Dr. Cho has been an ASIP member since 1994, and has served on the ASIP Council (2006-2009), Publications Committee (2007-2009), Committee for Career Development, Women, and Minorities (2006-2009, Chair 2008-2009), Nominating Committee (2009-2012), and Meritorious Awards Committee (2020-present). Dr. Cho is an elected member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation (2000), the Association of American Physicians (2008), the Johns Hopkins Society of Scholars (2011), and the National Academy of Medicine (2015).