Jerry W. Shay Professor


 The University of Texas at Austin, BA, Zoology/ Cell Biology, 1966

The University of Kansas at Lawrence, MA, Cell Biol. & Physiol.Mol. Cell., 1968

The University of Colorado at Boulder, PhD, Develop. Biology, 1972-1975



1975-1993 Assistant/Associate Professor, Department of Cell Biology/Neuroscience, UT Southwestern

1993- Professor, Department of Cell Biology, UT Southwestern, Southland Financial Corporation Distinguished Chair in Geriatric Research

2002- Associate Director, Education and Training, UT Southwestern Harold Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center


1990-1994 Member, NIH Study Section on Mammalian Genetics

1995-1997 Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation Research Grant Committee

1996- present Mary Kay Ash Foundation, Chairman, Scientific Review Committee



2002- present Reata Pharmaceutical, Dallas, TX (SAB)

2012- present KAU University, Center for Excellence in Medical Genetics Research, Jeddah Saudi Arabia (Chair, SAB)




In Vitro, Cellular and Developmental Biology; Methods in Cell Science; Differentiation; International Journal of Molecular Medicine and Oncology; Experimental Gerontology; Antiaging Research; Mechanisms of Aging and Development: Aging Research Reviews; J. Clinical Pathology; Neoplasia; J. National Cancer Institute; Clinical Cancer Research; J. Regenerative Medicine.



1978-1983 NIH Research Career Development Award

1995-1997 AlliedSignal Award for Research on Aging

1997 Institute for Scientific Research - Most highly cited researchers

1996-2003 Ellison Medical Foundation Senior Scholar

2001 American Aging Association, Hayflick Award

2005-2008 Ted Nash Award



1996- Senior Leadership Committee UT Southwestern Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center

1997-present Executive Committee UTSW/MD Anderson Lung Cancer SPORE






#5,489,508 Issue date: 02/06/96

"Therapy and Diagnosis of Conditions Related to Telomere Length and/or Telomerase Activity"

 #5,639,613 Issue data: 06/17/97

"Methods for Cancer Diagnosis and Prognosis"

 #5,645,986 Issue date: 07/08/97

"Telomerase Activity Inhibitor Screening"

 #5,648,215 Issue date: 07/15/97

"Telomerase Diagnostic Methods"

 #5,686,245 Issue date: 11/11/97

"Screening for Agents that Modulate Telomere Length"

 #5,686,306 Issue date: 11/11/97

"Methods and Reagents for Lengthening Telomeres"

#5,693,474 Issue date: 12/2/97

"Methods for Cancer Diagnosis and Prognosis"

#5,695,932 Issue date: 12/9/97

"Telomerase Activity Assays for Diagnosing Pathogenic Infections and Identifying Pathogen Telomerase Inhibitors"

 #5,707,795 Issue date: 1/13/98

"Diagnosis of Conditions Related to Telomere Length"

#5,830,644 Issue date: 11/3/98

"Method for Screening for Agents which Increase Telomerase Activity in a Cell"


Graduate School
University of Texas at Austin (1968)
Graduate School
University of Kansas Main Campus (1972)

Research Interest

  • Cancer stem cells
  • Cell Biology of the cancer genome
  • Mechanisms of cellular immortalization
  • Mouse models of radiation-induced cancer
  • Role of telomeres and telomerase in cancer and aging


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Two and three dimensional models for risk assessment of radiation-enhanced colorectal turmorigenesis
Roig, A. I. , Hight, S.K., and Shay, J.W. Radiation Research Fall 2008 in press
Actions of human telomerase beyond telomeres
Y-S Cong, J.W. Shay Cell Research Spring 2008 18 725-732
Adult-onset pulmonary fibrosis caused by mutations in telomerase
Tsakiri, K.D., Cronkite, J.T., Kuan, P.J. Xing, C., Ganesh, R., Weissler, J.C., Rosenblatt, R.L. Shay, J.W. Garcia, C.K PNAS Spring 2007 104 7552-7557

Honors & Awards

  • Univeristy of Texas Health Science Education
    Elected Member (2012)
  • University of Texas Regent's Outstanding Teaching Award
    Medal (2012)
  • Doctor of the Decade (1995-2005)
    Ranked 6th Most Cited Author in General Biomedical Sicence (2006)
  • Ted Nash Award
    Aging Research (2006)
  • Hayflick Award
    American Aging Association (2001)
  • Southland Financial Corporation
    Distinguished Chair in Geriatric Research (2001)
  • Ellison Medical Foundation
    Senior Scholar Award (1999)