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January 12, 2011

Padma Atluri, Writer for Men in Trees and 90210, Passes

Atluri began her career in publicity, which led to work as a writer.

Padma Atluri, a television writer who worked on such series as Men in Trees and 90210, died January 8, 2011, in Los Angeles of a rare form of leiomyosarcoma, a rare form of uterine cancer. She was 39.

Atluri died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. She had been diagnosed with the cancer last year and underwent surgery. She returned to work on the CW series 90210 in June and remained with the show as late as last month.

The final episode she wrote will air on February 21 and will include a dedication to Atluri.

Atluri grew up in Huntington Beach, California and earned an undergraduate degree in business administration at University of Southern California and a graduate degree at Boston University.

She began her writing career at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and a year later moved to the entertainment industry. She worked briefly at the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, then as an assistant in the current programming department at Fox. In 1999, she joined HBO as manager of Awards & Festivals, a position she held for seven years.

At HBO, she befriended such writers as Cindy Chupack and Liz Tigelaar, who helped her segue into writing for the ABC series Men in Trees in 2006. She also wrote articles for the Huffington Post, Marie Claire, O: The Oprah Winfrey Magazine and msn.com. In addition, she worked on Barack Obama’s presidential campaign.

She is survived by her mother, sister, brother and niece.

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