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Meet Dell Med
We’re rethinking the role of academic medicine in improving health — and doing so with a unique focus on our community.
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Austin Cooney, Ph.D.


Ph.D., Biochemistry
National University of Ireland, Galway


Austin Cooney is an associate professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Dell Medical School, where he is a basic researcher in the Dell Pediatric Research Institute.

The Cooney research group focuses on the transcriptional regulation of pluripotent stem cells as they exist in their undifferentiated state or any of the many potential differentiated states. What makes these cells unique is their ability to differentiate into many cell types of the body. Their potential uses are in regenerative medicine to treat debilitating diseases. At Dell Medical School, Cooney and his group have embarked on the generation of patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cells with other University of Texas and Ascension Seton collaborators. These cells can be used to model human diseases with the ultimate goal of creating therapies.

Cooney came Austin from the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. He was an associate professor in the Department of Cell Biology, where he explored the workings of transcription factors and stem cells for more than 25 years.

Cooney received bachelor’s and doctorate degrees from The National University of Ireland, Galway. He is a citizen of three countries where he has lived and worked. He is truly an AngloIrishAmerican.

Professional Affiliations
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2005-2018
  • International Society for Stem Cell Research, 2002-2020
  • American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 2015-2018
  • Endocrine Society, 1994-2018
Awards & Honors
  • Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P. for Educational Leadership, 2013
    Baylor College of Medicine
  • Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P. Faculty Excellence Award for Teaching and Evaluation, 2008
    Baylor College of Medicine
  • Award of Excellence for Education and Service, 2008
    Baylor College of Medicine
  • Donald J. Nash Memorial Award, 2007
  • The Marc Dresden Award for Excellence in Graduate Education, 2000"
    Baylor College of Medicine