Dr. Christopher Vakoc graduated with an undergraduate degree in biochemistry from Penn State University and subsequently earned Ph.D. and M.D. degrees from the University of Pennsylvania. His dissertation research was performed in the laboratory of Gerd Blobel, where he studied basic mechanisms of long-range enhancer function, hematopoietic transcription factors, and histone lysine methylation. In 2008, Chris accepted a position as a Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Fellow and during this time, he initiated research into how chromatin modifications support the pathogenesis of leukemia. A key focus of this work has been to use genetic screens to reveal unique chromatin regulator dependencies in leukemia cells, which led to the discovery of BRD4 as a therapeutic target in this disease. In 2011, Chris joined the research faculty at CSHL and was recently promoted to Professor. His laboratory continues to identify novel transcriptional regulators of cancer cell growth with an objective of developing next-generation cancer therapies.