AIDS Researcher Robert W. Doms, Named Chief of Pathology


Longtime University of Pennsylvania professor and AIDS researcher Robert W. Doms, M.D., Ph.D., will soon be joining the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia as pathologist-in-chief and chair of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. Dr. Doms’s new appointment is effective September 15.

Before joining Children’s Hospital, Dr. Doms spent over a decade at the University of Pennsylvania, where he will retain a dual appointment. Dr. Doms first joined UPenn in 1992, and in 2001 was named chair of the Department of Microbiology. He received his M.D. and Ph.D. from Yale in 1988, and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the NIH in 1992.

Much of Dr. Dom’s work as a researcher has been focused on AIDS pathogenesis and how viruses enter cells, but more recently his lab has also studied West Nile Virus and other emerging pathogens. He has won a number of awards for his work, including
the Elizabeth Glaser Scientist Award from the Pediatric AIDS Foundation. And though his lab currently remains at the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Doms hopes to eventually move it over to a
CHOP facility.

In addition to finding the opportunity to lead the pathology deparment of the leading pediatric hospital in the country attractive, Dr. Doms decided to join CHOP because he was “looking for new challenges.” Because a pathology department is by nature a clinical/research hybrid, his new position will allow him the opportunity to work more closely with his clinical colleagues, Dr. Doms noted.

In his role as the new Chief of Pathology, Dr. Doms plans to work to integrate next generation sequencing (NGS) techniques into the Department of Pathology’s work, a project he calls a “big challenge.” By reducing sequencing time and costs, NGS can help researchers and clinicians to efficiently identify the genetic variants
underlying diseases through whole-exome or whole-genome sequencing.

“I am very pleased that Dr. Doms has agreed to join us at CHOP, and we look forward to his contribution to an exceptional Pathology and Laboratory Medicine program,” said Chief Executive Officer of CHOP Steven M. Altschuler, M.D.

“Bob is internationally known and recognized for his discoveries in HIV/AIDS research, and his reputation for excellence will certainly enhance our efforts at CHOP.”