Emily Boja, Ph.D.

Program Director

Emily Boja

Dr. Boja joined the Office of Clinical Proteomics Cancer Research (OCCPR) at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in 2009 as a Program Director for the Clinial Proteomic Tumor Analysis Consortium (CPTAC) program. The overall goals of CPTAC are to improve the understanding of tumor biology, predict drug response to therapy, and reveal the mechanisms of drug resistance. Due to her diverse scientific background ranging from biochemistry, proteomics, and systems biology, she provides scientific expertise and programmatic leadership in managing  large-scale proteogenomic studies of human cancer specimens, as well as exploring emerging technologies and scientific disciplines to be integrated into the CPTAC portfilio (e.g., single cell proteomics, neoantigen identification and validation). She also oversees the analytical, informatics and regulatory aspects of molecular diagnostics including technologies, platforms and tools in collaboration with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the American Association of Clinical Chemistry (AACC). For example, understanding regulatory science while applying targeted proteomic assays in the clinic, and led the launch of the first precisionFDA-NCI-CPTAC-DREAM's "Multi-Omics Enabled Sample Mislabeling Correction Challenge." Prior to the National Cancer Institute, Dr. Boja served as a Staff Scientist at the Laboratory of Cardiac Energetics where she led the studies on the role of mammalian mitochonrial proteogenomics and phosphoproteomics in OXPHOS and cardiac energetics, following the completion of her postdoctoral Research Fellow training at the Laboratory of Biophysical Chemistry, National Heart, Lung and BIood Institute (intramural programs), NIH. Her expertise originates from her structural biology research on key enzymes and pathways involved in one-carbon metabolism, focusing on the structure-functional relationship and regulation of serine hydroxymethyl transferase on serine synthesis pathways and the impact of its dysregulation on cancer, and later high throughput comprehensive proteomic studies of biological systems (e.g., renal cells, heart mitochondria). Dr. Boja holds a Ph.D. degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (1999) from the Medical College of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University. Dr. Boja has co-authored many publications in peer-reviewed journals on enzymology, proteomics, and proteogenomics, mentored various undergraduate and graduate level students as a Staff Scientist, and served on an oversight committee of NINDS Proteomics Core Facility, and on many technical evaluation panels for contract proposals.