•   In our labs and across the industry, we are seeing how human genetics can help determine if a patient will respond to a certain medication.

    Caroline Fox, M.D.

    Caroline Fox, M.D. is passionate about genetics.

    In medical school, she studied the effects of the environment on diabetes and obesity on a tribe of Native Americans (certain populations worldwide have a greater propensity towards diabetes; this tribe was one such group). Her research left her motivated to learn more about how genetics plays a role in metabolic diseases. “That was my start,” she notes. “Since then, almost all of my research has been focused on uncovering the genetic foundations of these types of diseases.”

    Changing Perceptions

    Prior to joining Merck Research Laboratories in Boston, Caroline worked at the National Institutes of Health. There, she led a lab that studied metabolic risk factors for cardiovascular disease as part of the Framingham Heart Study, a pioneering long-term population study of cardiovascular disease. But, she notes, the shift to Merck was a relatively easy one. “I was impressed by Merck’s efforts to leverage human genetics to drive drug discovery,” she says. “For me, it was the perfect next step from the work that I had been doing in academia.”

    Genetics: The New Frontier

    We're lucky — Caroline’s passion for genetics is a great fit for Merck.? “In our labs and across the industry, we are seeing an increased use of human genetics to help determine whether patients will respond to a certain drug or not," She points to Merck's active research collaborations with scientists around the world aimed at advancing this field of science. “I am very enthusiastic about where our research may lead.”



    Name: Caroline Fox, M.D.

    Title: Vice President and Head of Genetics and Pharmacogenomics

    Education: MPH, University of Michigan; M.D., University of Pennsylvania

    Favorite Downtime Activity: Running, swimming, reading, and baking

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