Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine.
Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Nancy A. Jenkins Ph.D.

Nancy A. Jenkins, Ph.D.

Nancy A. Jenkins, Ph.D.

Nancy A. Jenkins, Ph.D.

Senior Member
The Methodist Hospital Research Institute
The Methodist Cancer Research Program
Dean of Genetics
The Methodist Academy

E-mail: njenkins2@houstonmethodist.org
Phone: 713-441-6623


B.A.   Sweet Briar College
M.A.   Indiana University
Ph.D.   Indiana University

Postdoctoral Training

Postdoctoral Fellow, Dana Farber Cancer Institute (Viral Oncology)

Postdoctoral Fellow, The Jackson Laboratory (Mouse Genetics)



Dr. Nancy Jenkins received her Ph.D. in molecular and cellular biology from Indiana University. Following postdoctoral studies at Harvard Medical School she joined the staff of The Jackson Laboratory and then the National Cancer Institute-Frederick, where she was a Senior Investigator and Head of the Molecular Genetics of Development Section for 22 years. She moved to the Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology in Singapore in 2006, where she served as Deputy Director for most of her stay. In 2011 she returned to the US to serve as Co-Director of The Methodist Cancer Biology Program at The Methodist Hospital Research Institute. For more than 30 years she has co-headed a laboratory with Neal Copeland; the focus of their current research is cancer genetics. They have co-authored more than 780 papers and are among the 50 most cited biomedical research scientists in the world today. Both have served on numerous scientific advisory and editorial boards and they have consulted for several biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. Both are also members of the US National Academy of Sciences.

Description of Research

Jenkins and Copeland have modeled many different types of human disease in the mouse, but the focus of their current research is exclusively cancer. They are using the Sleeping Beauty transposable element system to tag and clone genes involved in the initiation, progression and metastasis of cancer. It is hoped that a better understanding of the genetics of cancer will lead to the development of additional targeted therapies for the treatment of various forms of the disease.

Major Areas of Research

Mouse models of cancer, insertional mutagenesis, forward genetic screens, high throughput sequencing, candidate cancer gene detection

Recent Publications

Copeland NG, Jenkins NA. Harnessing transposons for cancer gene discovery.  Nature Reviews Cancer. 2010;10:696-706.

Dupuy AJ, Rogers LM, Kim J, Nannapaneni K, Starr TK, Liu P, Swick BL, Largaespada DA, Scheetz TE, Jenkins NA, Copeland NG. A modified Sleeping Beauty transposon system that can be used to model a wide variety of human cancers in mice.  Cancer Res. 2009;69:8150-8156.

Starr TK, Allaei R, Silverstein KAT, Staggs RA, Bergemann TL, O’Sullivan MG, Matise I, Dupuy AJ, Collier LS, Powers S, Thibodeau SN, Tessarollo L, Copeland NG, Jenkins NA, Cormier RT, Largaesapda DA. A transposon-based genetic screen in mice identifies genes altered in colorectal cancer.  Science. 2009;323:1747–1750.

Dupuy AJ, Akagi K, Largaespada DA, Copeland NG, Jenkins NA. Mammalian mutagenesis using a highly mobile somatic Sleeping Beauty transposon system.  Nature. 2005;436:221-226.