Jesse Dixon, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor

Gene Expression Laboratory

Helen McLoraine Developmental Chair

Jesse Dixon
Salk Institute for Biological Studies - Videos


Flipping the switch: Salk scientists shed new light on genetic changes that turn “on” cancer genes

LA JOLLA—Cancer, caused by abnormal overgrowth of cells, is the second-leading cause of death in the world. Researchers from the Salk Institute have zeroed in on specific mechanisms that activate oncogenes, which are altered genes that can cause normal cells to become cancer cells.

Cancer can be caused by genetic mutations, yet the impact of specific types such as structural variants that break and rejoin DNA, can vary widely. The findings, published in Nature on December 7, 2022, show that the activity of those mutations depends on the distance between a particular gene and the sequences that regulate the gene, as well as on the level of activity of the regulatory sequences involved. Read more »


AB, Princeton University
PhD, University of California San Diego
MD, University of California San Diego
Helmsley-Salk Fellow, Salk Institute for Biological Studies

Awards & Honors

  • Rita Allen Foundation Award Scholar, 2023
  • Highly Cited Researcher, 2022
  • NIH Early Independence Award (DP5), 2016-2021
  • University of California San Diego Chancellor’s Dissertation Medal for Biological Studies, 2014
  • University of California San Diego Department of Biomedical Science Outstanding Dissertation Award, 2013
  • California Institute for Regenerative Medicine Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, 2010-2012