Khedoudja Nafa, PharmD, PhD.
After her graduate (PharmD) and post-graduate education (residency in Hematology-biology), Khedoudja became a Teaching Assistant at Mustapha University Hospital in Algiers, Algeria. During that period, she focused her studies on the molecular genetics of hemophilia A (Ph.D. research project). As a summer research fellow at Hammersmith Hospital in London, she determined the molecular basis of the glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency in Algeria, and elucidated the molecular basis of paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria, an acquired blood disorder. In October 1994, she joined the Department of Human Genetics at MSKCC as a Research Associate with a Master’s degree in Human Genetics from the University of Paris and a PhD degree in Hemobiology from the University of Algiers. She obtained a second PhD degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from the University Paris-V, France in 1998. She was appointed Assistant Attending Molecular Geneticist at MSKCC in March 1998 and was instrumental in establishing MSKCC’s first clinical laboratory for germline molecular genetic diagnosis. In this new role, she participated in the development and validation of many essential tests for breast cancer (BRCA1 & 2 genes), thrombotic genetics risk factors, hereditary colon cancer (MLH1 & MSH2 genes), and hemochromatosis. She then joined the laboratory of Diagnostic Molecular Pathology of the Department of Pathology in January 2005 and was promoted to Associate Attending Molecular Geneticist in November 2006. Khedoudja has since collaborated in the validation and implementation of several new specific mutation assays for molecular diagnosis of solid tumors: lung cancer (EGFR & KRAS mutations), colon (KRAS exon 2 mutations & BRAF V600E), gastrointestinal stromal tumor (KIT & PDGFRA genes), melanoma (BRAF V600E, KIT, & GNAQ/GNA11), and hematological malignancies (IGH &TCRB rearrangements, FLT3, JAK2 V617F, & NPM1 mutations). Her current service responsibilities include new test development and improving current clinical lab tests. Her academic activities focus on practical molecular diagnostic approaches, on the characterization of novel genetic alterations detected in the laboratory, and on molecular diagnostic testing on clinical trial samples.