Accelerating Breakthrough Discoveries into Medicines

Marikki Laiho, MD, PHD

Marikki Laiho, MD, PhD is Willard and Lillian Hackerman Professor in Radiation Oncology and Professor of Radiation Oncology and Oncology at the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD.

At Johns Hopkins, Dr. Laiho is the Director of Division of Molecular Radiation Sciences, a research division that focuses on the basic mechanistic aspects of cellular responses to genetic lesions and which strives towards translating this information to improved cancer therapies.

Cancers have altered transcriptional programs that lead to deregulation of normal cellular functions and support cancer cell characteristics. These processes are governed by RNA polymerase I (Pol I), which is highly responsive to external stimuli and commonly hyperactivated in cancer.

Dr. Laiho’s project with the Harrington Discovery Institute examines the impact of controlling of Pol I and explores cancer cell vulnerabilities to mitigate Pol I deregulation. Dr. Laiho and her lab will introduce a novel small molecule compound (BMH-21) that targets Pol I activity as a new, highly potential cancer therapeutic candidate.

Dr. Laiho received her MD and PhD from the University of Helsinki, and conducted her postdoctoral fellowships at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, Worcester, MA, and the Sloan-Kettering Institute, New York, NY.

Dates to Know

April 5, 2017
Letter of Intent Deadline

May 31, 2017
Full Application Deadline (For those invited)

December 2017
Awardees Notified

Harrington Project

The Harrington Discovery Institute is the nonprofit arm of the Harrington Project for Discovery & Development, an international initiative supporting breakthrough research by physician-scientists. The Project is a new and powerful approach to address some of the challenges hindering advancement of medicine today.

The Harrington Grant is an important part of the overall pharmaceutical research initiative created by The Harrington Project.

For Questions

For questions about the Scholar-Innovator grants or the application process, please email