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Prominent Physician-Researcher to Direct Cedars-Sinai Thoracic Medical Oncology

Sukhmani K. Padda, MD, Says Top Priorities are to Expand Clinical Trials and Patients' Access to Novel Therapies

Distinguished thoracic medical oncologist Sukhmani K. Padda, MD, recently was selected to direct Thoracic Medical Oncology at Cedars-Sinai Cancer.

The selection of Padda, following a national search, reflects her breadth of experience as a clinician and researcher in the field of thoracic oncology, which includes the diagnosis and treatment of lung cancer.

Padda’s research focuses on therapies for thoracic cancers, with a particular interest in improving treatment for genomic subsets of lung cancer, including KRAS- and EGFR-positive lung cancer, and rare thoracic tumors, such as thymic malignancies and lung neuroendocrine tumors. She also studies questions related to tumor biomarkers to help determine the best treatments for patients.

“There are a lot of success stories in lung cancer, but the area still needs improvement,” Padda said. “A great deal of work is being done with targeted treatments and how novel treatment approaches can overcome resistance to targeted therapies. There are a lot of interesting questions; I’m excited to help look for the answers.”

Padda said that one of her top priorities is to further the development of clinical trials, building on Cedars-Sinai’s reputation for basic, translational, clinical and health services research.

“I would like to ensure that patients have access to novel clinical trials and therapies, maximizing their opportunities for successful health outcomes,” Padda explained.

A Detroit native, Padda obtained her medical degree from Northeastern Ohio Medical University in 2007, graduating at age 23. She completed her residency in internal medicine at Stanford University in 2011 and a three-year fellowship there in medical hematology/oncology in 2014. She was an assistant professor of Medicine at Stanford University, where she was the recipient of multiple honors, including a Department of Medicine Teaching Award and a prIME Oncology Young Investigator Award. Padda also served as the Phase 1 Clinical Research Group leader at the university.

Padda has authored and co-authored dozens of papers and articles for peer-reviewed publications and is a peer reviewer for a host of prestigious cancer journals, including the Journal of Clinical Oncology and JAMA Oncology.

"Dr. Padda is a key addition to our faculty," said Dan Theodorescu, MD, PhD, director of Cedars-Sinai Cancer. "Her clinical expertise and research will greatly contribute to positioning our Lung Cancer Program as one of the best in the nation, while providing Cedars-Sinai Cancer patients with exciting new options for lung cancer treatment."

Read about lung cancer on the Cedars-Sinai Blog: Should I Get a Lung Cancer Screening?