Dr. Mohamad Cherry has been promoted to medical director of hematology oncology for Atlantic Health System Cancer Care and the medical director of the Atlantic Cellular Therapy Program, the system announced.
Atlantic Health officials said Cherry, an award-winning physician-researcher already working with Atlantic Hematology Oncology, has been named to these two new, systemwide positions because of the leadership he has demonstrated in revitalizing the Morristown Medical Center leukemia program, his forward-looking research and clinical care, and the esteem in which he is held by clinicians, staff and patients alike.
Both positions encompass all cancers, not just hematologic malignancies.
Dr. Eric Whitman, medical director of Atlantic Health System Cancer Care, applauded the announcement.
“Dr. Cherry is a world-class cancer clinician and researcher, and we are fortunate to have him on our team of leading experts,” Whitman said. “Under his leadership, we will continue to offer to patients in New Jersey and surrounding states the most effective treatments, innovative clinical trials and patient-centered care.”
Cherry brings extensive experience to his expanded role. Among his many accomplishments since joining Atlantic Health System in 2017 are spearheading the development of the CAR T-cell therapy program and enrolling patients in clinical trials of this revolutionary new immunotherapy.
The program’s unprecedented growth under Cherry’s leadership has resulted in the development of the Atlantic Cellular Therapy program, which will further explore the use of immune effector cell therapies — including CAR-T and tumor infiltrating lymphocytes — as a way to alter a patient’s own white blood cells to help fight certain cancers.
Cherry’s expertise also led to the approval of a new hematology/oncology fellowship, which he directs.
Cherry currently is leading 30 different clinical trials, including studies available at few other locations, thanks to Atlantic Health System’s partnership in the Breakthrough Oncology Accelerator with the Translational Genomics Research Institute of Phoenix.
In his new leadership roles, Cherry will work collaboratively with a multidisciplinary team of specialists across Atlantic Health System to ensure patients seeking cancer care receive access to the latest therapeutic treatments and research at all of the system’s adult acute care hospitals.
He will also be instrumental in driving coordinated, high-quality clinical care, and supporting efforts to improve outcomes while reducing variations within care.
“In addition to his many research, clinical and administrative accomplishments, Dr. Cherry’s warm personality and outstanding clinical skills have earned the respect and admiration of fellow physicians, nurses, patients and their families,” Whitman said. “His dedication to patients and his compassion know no bounds. He is truly a ‘doctor’s doctor’ and advocate for his patients.”
Prior to joining Atlantic Health System, Cherry held a number of senior appointments, including the Mai Eager Anderson Endowed Chair in Cancer Clinical Trials. He conducted pioneering research at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center’s Stephenson Cancer Center. There, he performed groundbreaking research, which he has continued at Atlantic Health System Cancer Care. His research in niche areas has included epigenetics — genetic research that turns specific genes “on” or “off” — and in the development of new therapeutics, focusing on blood cancers such as acute leukemias.