Acclaimed surgical oncologist to head Surgery Department

1st Surgeon-in-Chief of William P. Clements Jr. University Hospital

DALLAS – Oct. 1, 2013 – Dr. Michael Choti, an internationally acclaimed surgical oncologist, has joined UT Southwestern Medical Center as Chair of the Department of Surgery and Surgeon-in-Chief of William P. Clements Jr. University Hospital, opening in 2014.

Dr. Michael Choti, an internationally acclaimed surgical oncologist, has joined UT Southwestern Medical Center as Chair of the Department of Surgery and Surgeon-in-Chief of William P. Clements Jr. University Hospital
Dr. Michael Choti has been named the 10th Chairman of Surgery at UT Southwestern

Dr. Choti, whose specialties include liver, pancreatic, and other gastrointestinal cancers, brings a broad portfolio covering clinical care, research, and education to the surgical table as the 10th Chairman of Surgery at UT Southwestern.

“There is no greater privilege than to have the opportunity to lead the UT Southwestern Department of Surgery. I am particularly honored to assume such a position where there is both such a legacy of academic medicine and potential for the future,” said Dr. Choti, holder of the Hall and Mary Lucile Shannon Distinguished Chair in Surgery.

“My goal is to lead the department into the challenging future of academic health care – building a premier department that leads in the excellence of person- and family-centered care, scientific discovery, and surgical training,” he said. “In addition, we want to serve our community in North Texas to the best of our ability.”

After more than two decades at Johns Hopkins University, Dr. Choti said he was attracted by the invigorating change underway at UT Southwestern, offering a unique opportunity to have an impact on the institution, the region, and the changing health care environment.

“UT Southwestern is in a major, optimistic transition with new facilities, invigorated leadership, and superb clinicians and scientists. With the changing demographics and evolving health care climate, this is an ideal time to make a difference,” Dr. Choti said.

Dr. Choti was identified after a rigorous national search based on his exceptional accomplishments as a physician, scientist, and teacher, said Dr. J. Gregory Fitz, Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost, and Dean of UT Southwestern Medical School.

“He will bring considerable skills to UT Southwestern at a critical time to focus on the continued growth and development of the department. He also will play a central role in the leadership of UT Southwestern Medical School as we look forward to the many opportunities before us,” said Dr. Fitz. “I am confident that the department will continue to prosper under his leadership. His perspectives in science, education, and exemplary clinical care and research will make a difference.”

Dr. Choti’s research interests include experimental therapeutics, investigative therapy in gastrointestinal malignancies, molecular genetics related to cancer and cancer biology, clinical research in outcomes, and an interest in surgical innovation, computer-assisted surgery, and robotics in cancer therapy.

His clinical interests focus on malignancies of the pancreas and liver. “While significant strides have been made in these areas, both biologic and technical challenges remain when treating these devastating diseases,” he said. He has been the principal investigator or co-investigator for a variety of clinical and preclinical studies examining new approaches for the treatment of liver, pancreatic, and colorectal cancer, serves on various leadership positions in national and international societies, and has chaired study sections for the American Cancer Society. He has served as Chair of the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program Hepatobiliary Task Force, the American College of Surgeons’ Commission on Cancer, the GI committees of the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project and American College of Surgeons’ Oncology Group, and the Colorectal Cancer and Neuroendocrine Tumors Guidelines Panels of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

His academic work has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, NCI, and the American Cancer Society and has been presented in more than 300 peer-reviewed publications. Further, he has a well-earned reputation as an outstanding mentor to students and surgical trainees at all stages of their careers. His national leadership is reflected in his diverse roles as Senior Editor for the Annals of Surgical Oncology (2007-2010), Chair of the FDA’s General and Plastic Surgery Devices Panel of the Medical Devices Advisory Committee (2004-present), President of the International Society of Gastrointestinal Oncology (2010-2011), and many other responsibilities.

Dr. Choti spent 21 years at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, where he was Vice Chair of the Department of Surgery and Professor of Surgery, Oncology, and Radiology. He also was a Professor in the Whiting School of Engineering at Johns Hopkins, where he conducted research directed at surgical innovation, robotics, and image-guided surgical cancer therapy. A graduate of Yale School of Medicine, Dr. Choti completed his general surgical training at the University of Pennsylvania and a surgical oncology fellowship at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center before joining Johns Hopkins. He also earned an M.B.A. from Johns Hopkins in 2004.

About UT Southwestern Medical Center
UT Southwestern, one of the premier academic medical centers in the nation, integrates pioneering biomedical research with exceptional clinical care and education. The institution’s faculty has many distinguished members, including five who have been awarded Nobel Prizes since 1985. Numbering more than 2,700, the faculty is responsible for groundbreaking medical advances and is committed to translating science-driven research quickly to new clinical treatments. UT Southwestern physicians provide medical care in 40 specialties to nearly 90,000 hospitalized patients and oversee more than 1.9 million outpatient visits a year.


Media Contact: Russell Rian

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