At the Knight Cancer Institute at the Oregon Health & Sciences University (OHSU), I am Director of Precision Oncology and responsible for the implementation of an integrated program of tumor analysis, decision-making and implementation of novel precision oncology trials. The key goal will be to use serial tumor and liquid biopsies to evaluate and target adaptive responses in real time to interdict cancer evolution. Prior to moving to OHSU, at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, I founded the Department of Systems Biology, which was the first Cancer Systems Biology department in the United States. I served as Co-Director of the Institute for Personalized Cancer Therapy (IPCT), the Head of the Kleberg Center for Molecular Markers and Co-Director of the Ovarian Cancer Moon Shot. My research ranges across: 1) translating the cancer genome through mechanistic studies determining the role of genomic and other aberrations present in patient tumors, 2) identification and validation of therapeutic targets emphasizing mechanisms of resistance and rational combination therapy to overcome emerging resistance in evolving cancers, 4) developing, validating, and implementing molecular markers; and 5) integrating data through a cancer systems biology approach into robust predictive mathematical models. The overarching goal is to perform deep molecular analysis of each patient “to let the patient teach us what is important”. This process is facilitated by the implementation and integration of a comprehensive suite of high-throughput technologies including assessment of genomic aberrations, transcriptional profiles, functional proteomics and metabolomics, and drug screening using conventional and high content imaging systems. We have also implemented a comprehensive functional genomics program designed to distinguish drivers from passengers and identify their therapeutic liabilities. My efforts have been recognized in the Komen Foundation’s Brinker Award for Scientific Excellence and the Finneran Family Prize for Translational Research. I have been very successful in supporting training, mentoring, and career development for young scientists including graduate students, fellows, and junior faculty. The majority of my trainees have developed successful research careers rising through the ranks to full professor, department chairs, and institute directors. Based on this role, I have been nominated for and awarded multiple mentoring awards, including the Stand Up 2 Cancer Laura Ziskin Prize for Mentoring.
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