News Release

PHILADELPHIA — Rahul M. Kohli, MD, PhD, assistant professor of Medicine and Biochemistry & Biophysics in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, has received a $500,000 grant from the Rita Allen Foundation. He will receive $100,000 per year for five years as a 2011 Rita Allen Foundation Scholar.

Kohli was selected because of his research's potential for "revolutionary results." Kohli and his lab group, established at Penn Medicine in 2010, integrate chemical biology and enzymology approaches to study the action of DNA modifying enzymes. While the human genome is commonly viewed as static reservoir for information, Kohli's lab is exploring the idea that DNA cytosine modifying enzymes can be used to introduce an added layer of complexity by muffling, amplifying or even rewriting parts of the genome. Understanding the dynamic genome has implications for advances in infectious diseases, stem cell biology and oncology, among other fields.

The Rita Allen Foundation's mission includes supporting "transformative ideas in their earliest stages to leverage their growth and promote breakthrough solutions to significant problems." Kohli received recognition for the award at the convocation of current Rita Allen scholars in Princeton on June 22-23.


Penn Medicine is one of the world's leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and excellence in patient care. Penn Medicine consists of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (founded in 1765 as the nation's first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System, which together form a $5.3 billion enterprise.

The Perelman School of Medicine has been ranked among the top five medical schools in the United States for the past 18 years, according to U.S. News & World Report's survey of research-oriented medical schools. The School is consistently among the nation's top recipients of funding from the National Institutes of Health, with $373 million awarded in the 2015 fiscal year.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System's patient care facilities include: The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center -- which are recognized as one of the nation's top "Honor Roll" hospitals by U.S. News & World Report -- Chester County Hospital; Lancaster General Health; Penn Wissahickon Hospice; and Pennsylvania Hospital -- the nation's first hospital, founded in 1751. Additional affiliated inpatient care facilities and services throughout the Philadelphia region include Chestnut Hill Hospital and Good Shepherd Penn Partners, a partnership between Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network and Penn Medicine.

Penn Medicine is committed to improving lives and health through a variety of community-based programs and activities. In fiscal year 2015, Penn Medicine provided $253.3 million to benefit our community.

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