Boyko Atanassov, PhD

Assistant Professor of Oncology
Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center
Areas of Expertise: 
Deubiquitinating enzymes
Chromatin modifying enzymes
Regulation of gene expression
Special Interests: 
Molecular mechanism of cancer metastasis
Cell signaling
Cancer drug discovery


Dr. Atanassov obtained his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. During his doctoral studies, he focused on elucidating the DNA repair mechanisms that cancer cells employ to counter the effects of the genotoxic agents used in chemotherapy. He spent half of his doctoral studies as a participant in the Graduate Partnership Program at NIH, where he was working with Barbara Davis and J. Carl Barrett to study the role of the breast cancer-associated BRCA2 in homologous recombination and DNA repair. In 2007, Dr. Atanassov joined the laboratory of Dr. Sharon Dent at MD Anderson Cancer Center, as a postdoctoral fellow. Dr. Atanassov’s postdoctoral studies were focused on understanding the roles that a multi-subunit chromatin modifying complex called SAGA (SPT-GCN5-ADA) has in development and disease. Dr. Atanassov was later promoted to an Instructor in the Department of Epigenetics and Molecular Carcinogenesis at MD Anderson Cancer Center, and in 2016 to an Assistant Professor in the same department. In 2017, Dr. Atanassov joined the faculty of the Pharmacology and Therapeutics department at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center where he will continue to work with world-class scientists and clinicians to connect the molecular findings in his laboratory to cancer treatments in the clinic.


Education and Training: 
2006 - PhD - Molecular Biology, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences
2007-2012 - Postdoctoral fellow, UT MD Anderson Cancer Center, Sharon Dent Lab