Anthony Davis, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology at UT Southwestern Medical Center. He is part of the Department of Radiation Oncology’s Section of Molecular Radiation Biology (MRB).

Dr. Davis earned a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology from the University of Oklahoma in 1999. He attended graduate school at UT Southwestern Medical Center and received a Ph.D. in cell and molecular biology under the mentorship of Marc Mumby, Ph.D., in the Department of Pharmacology. His graduate research focused on the role of protein phosphatase 2A in regulating the early steps of DNA replication.

Dr. Davis subsequently completed his postdoctoral research under the guidance of David J. Chen, Ph.D., in the Department of Radiation Oncology at UTSW. There, he investigated the cellular response to DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). In particular, he focused on examining the role that the DNA-dependent protein kinase complex plays in modulating DSB repair pathway choice.

Since 2016, Dr. Davis has led a lab in MRB investigating cellular responses to DSBs. Further, his group focuses on understanding aberrant DSB repair and signaling, as well as mechanisms underlying cancer cell resistance to chemotherapy and radiation. Specifically, they explore how cancer cells activate neomorphic pathways to manage DNA replication stress and damage, aiming to identify and target these pathways to combat therapy resistance.


University of Oklahoma Norman (1999)
Graduate School
UT Southwestern Medical Center (2006)

Research Interest

  • Basic radiation biology
  • Cellular response to DNA damage
  • Intrinsic and tumor/cancer radioresponses
  • The role of aberrant DNA repair and signaling in cancer etiology
  • The role of the DNA-PK complex in the cellular response to DNA damage


AXL/WRNIP1 Mediates Replication Stress Response and Promotes Therapy Resistance and Metachronous Metastasis in HER2+ Breast Cancer
Marquez-Palencia M, Herrera LR, Parida PK, Ghosh S, Kim K, Das NM, Gonzalez-Ericsson PI, Sanders ME, Mobley BC, Diegeler S, Aguilera TA, Peng Y, Lewis CM, Arteaga CL, Hanker AB, Whitehurst AW, Lorens JB, Brekken RA, Davis AJ, Malladi S Cancer research 2024 Mar 84 675-687
The cancer testes antigen, HORMAD1, limits genomic instability in cancer cells by protecting stalled replication forks
Herrera LR, Johnson RA, McGlynn K, Gibbs ZA, Davis AJ, Whitehurst AW Journal of Biological Chemistry 2023 Nov 299
DNA-PK is activated by SIRT2 deacetylation to promote DNA double-strand break repair by non-homologous end joining
Head PS, Kapoor-Vazirani P, Nagaraju GP, Zhang H, Rath SK, Luong NC, Haji-Seyed-Javadi R, Sesay F, Wang SY, Duong DM, Daddacha W, Minten EV, Song B, Danelia D, Liu X, Li S, Ortlund EA, Seyfried NT, Smalley DM, Wang Y, Deng X, Dynan WS, El-Rayes B, Davis AJ, Yu DS Nucleic acids research 2023 Aug 51 7972-7987
ATM phosphorylates the FATC domain of DNA-PKcsat threonine 4102 to promote non-homologous end joining
Lu H, Zhang Q, Laverty DJ, Puncheon AC, Augustine MM, Williams GJ, Nagel ZD, Chen PB, Davis AJ Nucleic acids research 2023 Jul 51 6770-6783
DNA-PKcs and ATM modulate mitochondrial ADP-ATP exchange as an oxidative stress checkpoint mechanism
Chen WM, Chiang JC, Shang Z, Palchik G, Newman C, Zhang Y, Davis AJ, Lee H, Chen PB EMBO Journal 2023 Mar 42
DNA-PKcs-dependent phosphorylation of RECQL4 promotes NHEJ by stabilizing the NHEJ machinery at DNA double-strand breaks
Lu H, Guan J, Wang SY, Li G, Bohr VA, Davis AJ Nucleic acids research 2022 Jun 50 5635-5651
Restoration of DNA repair mitigates genome instability and increases productivity of Chinese hamster ovary cells
Spahn PN, Zhang X, Hu Q, Lu H, Hamaker NK, Hefzi H, Li S, Kuo CC, Huang Y, Lee JC, Davis AJ, Ly P, Lee KH, Lewis NE Biotechnology and Bioengineering 2022 Mar 119 963-982
Evaluation of the Response of HNSCC Cell Lines to γ-Rays and 12C Ions: Can Radioresistant Tumors Be Identified and Selected for 12C Ion Radiotherapy?
Ding L, Sishc BJ, Polsdofer E, Yordy JS, Facoetti A, Ciocca M, Saha D, Pompos A, Davis AJ, Story MD Frontiers in Oncology 2022 Feb 12
Ablating putative Ku70 phosphorylation sites results in defective DNA damage repair and spontaneous induction of hepatocellular carcinoma
Saha J, Bae J, Wang SY, Lu H, Chappell LJ, Gopal P, Davis AJ Nucleic acids research 2021 Sep 49 9836-9850
Human RecQ Helicases in DNA Double-Strand Break Repair
Lu H, Davis AJ Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology 2021 Feb 9

Honors & Awards

  • Best Poster Presented, Wolfsberg Meeting
  • Early Career Investigator Travel Award for Radiation Research Society Annual Meeting
  • ICRR Young Investigators Travel Award
  • JRR Award at ICRR

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • American Association for Cancer Research
  • Radiation Research Society
  • Radiation Research Society
  • The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology