Nancy E. Davidson, M.D.

Nancy Davidson M.D.

Nancy E. Davidson, M.D.

Senior Vice President, Director and Professor
Clinical Research Division, Fred Hutch

Raisbeck Endowed Chair for Collaborative Research
Fred Hutch

President and Executive Director
Seattle Cancer Care Alliance

Dr. Nancy Davidson is the senior vice president and director of the Clinical Research Division at Fred Hutch. She serves as a bridge builder across the cancer treatment and research programs of the Fred Hutch/University of Washington Cancer Consortium. Dr. Davidson, a breast cancer oncologist, has built a worldwide reputation for her expertise and leadership in this field, for her research teasing out the role of hormones in breast cancer growth, and for her impact on the development of new standards of care. Her team was the first to describe how the activity of one of the estrogen receptor genes is regulated by epigenetic factors, which affect how the DNA code is read and translated into proteins. She has also made foundational contributions to our understanding of how estrogen deprivation and other therapies trigger breast cancer cells to kill themselves through apoptosis, or programmed cell death. Her lab studies paved the way for new clinical trials of drugs that exploit hormonal pathways to kill breast cancer. She has also led several critical trials that have established new therapeutic regimens for patients with the disease.

For assistance, contact:
Kim Drever, Administrative Manager
Office of Dr. Nancy E. Davidson

Other Appointments & Affiliations

Head, Department of Medicine, Division of Medical Oncology
University of Washington

Past President
American Association for Cancer Research, 2016-2017

Past President
American Society Clinical Oncology, 2007-2008


Wellesley College, B.A. Molecular Biology

Harvard Medical School, M.D.

Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Internal medicine internship

Johns Hopkins Hospital, Internal medicine residency

National Cancer Institute, Medical oncology fellowship

Research Interests

My laboratory focus has been on the role of epigenetics in breast cancer, especially the role of aberrant DNA methylation and histone modifications in hormone resistance using human breast cancer cell lines as a model system. These preclinical studies have advanced to early phase clinical trials assessing the role of epigenetic modifiers for treatment of breast cancer. Through my role as a member and chair of the Breast Committee for the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group I have served as a co-investigator or lead investigator for a number of practice-changing breast cancer trials. These include trials of optimal endocrine therapy for premenopausal hormone-responsive breast cancer, optimization of endocrine therapy for postmenopausal women, use of taxanes in the adjuvant setting, and utility of trastuzumab for early HER-2 positive breast cancer. As a co-founder of the Translational Breast Cancer Research Consortium (TBCRC) I have contributed to the development of early phase biospecimen-rich translational trials in breast cancer. I am an active participant in the development of evidence-based clinical pathways in breast cancer treatment and helped to spearhead a focus on value of cancer care through the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

Clinical Expertise

Management of breast cancer and conduct of all phases of oncology clinical trials

Dr. Nancy Davidson, Senior Vice President of the Clinical Research Division at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, explains the complimentary relationship of patient care and team science in cancer research.

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For the Media

The Media Relations team at Fred Hutch is available to assist members of the news media who would like to arrange interviews with faculty.

Email or call 206.667.2210.