19th Annual Cancer Research Symposium
Thursday, September 26, 2013 from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM
The 19th Annual Symposium is just around the corner. We have added some documents to better prepare you for our event:
The Symposium will feature very strong presenters at its 2013 meeting. Registration and calls for papers and posters will soon be issued. As the event draws nearer, keynote titles and abstracts will become available.
Here's an introduction to Drs. James L. Gulley (NCI), Ethan Dmitrovsky (Dartmouth, Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation, NCI), and Eric Jorgenson (Kaiser Permanente Northern California Division of Research).
Dr. James L. Gulley
is a board certified medical oncologist. He is Deputy Chief of the Laboratory of Tumor Immunology and Biology (LTIB) at the National Cancer Institute and Director of the LTIB's Clinical Trials Group and a Senior Investigator within the Medical Oncology Branch. Since 1999 Dr. Gulley has been involved in designing and running numerous clinical trials in prostate cancer at the National Cancer Institute. Most of the studies he has run utilize therapeutic vaccines for solid tumors. He has received numerous awards including a shared NIH Group Merit Award 'For major contributions to the field of cancer immunotherapy,' another NIH Group Merit Award 'For making enormous strides in the treatment of several different stages of prostate cancer,' and the Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Engineering 'For randomized, controlled studies using novel, recombinant vaccines to reduce the progression of prostate and other cancers and increase survival.' The specific aims of the Clinical Trials Group he directs are to conduct clinical trials (a) to evaluate the combined use of vaccines and local radiation of tumors, (b) to evaluate the effects of intratumoral vaccination alone and in combination with systemic vaccinations, and (c) to evaluate the role of vaccines with other immunostimulatory agents to control and/or eliminate established tumors. Dr. Gulley has focused on these novel immunotherapies and therapeutic approaches in patients with gastrointestinal and genitourinary tumors.
Since local radiation of tumor is a standard of care for both definitive and palliative treatment of many cancer types, the addition of vaccines to tumor radiation, with minimal likelihood of added toxicity and potential clinical synergy, presents a novel focus of study. Dr. Gulley has made important contributions to this area of clinical research. Scientists within the LTIB have shown that radiation of tumor cells can induce phenotypic alterations that facilitates T-cell mediated killing. This has been shown in both murine models and employing human cells in vitro. Dr. Gulley's initial trial enrolled 48 patients with clinically localized prostate cancer and added vaccine to definitive local radiation. Dr. Gulley demonstrated that not only can immune responses be generated in the face of local radiation of tumor in the majority of patients and that this combination is safe, but also that there is evidence of immune-mediated tumor killing seen by de novo formation of T-cell responses to antigens found in prostatic cancers but not found in the vaccine. This phenomenon of antigen cascade is being carefully studies by other scientists of the LTIB and represents an important resonance between bench and bedside in elucidating immunologic and anti-tumor phenomena. A second clinical trial combining vaccine and radiation therapy is actively enrolling patients with CEA-positive tumors and liver metastasis. This is a paradigm-shifting trial since radiation of tumor is not a standard of care for liver metastases, but is being employed in this trial to modulate the phenotype of tumor cells as to render them more susceptible to T-cell-mediated killing. Analysis of tumor biopsies on this study will seek to further expand in vitro data. A third study combining vaccine with a bone-seeking radionuclide for patients with prostate cancer metastatic to bone is currently in review. Dr. Gulley is also instrumental in the programmatic effort in the design and development of clinical trials, and the review and execution of vaccine protocols for a range of institutions throughout the United States. As one example, Dr. Gulley designed and co-wrote a multi-institutional CTEP sponsored phase II trial that will be the first to combine vaccine, radiation therapy and chemotherapy for patients with unresectable pancreatic cancer.
Dr. Ethan Dmitrovsky
is a physician-scientist and practicing oncologist. He studies vitamin A derivatives (retinoids) in cancer therapy and prevention and conducts bench to bedside or translational research. His team helped establish retinoid differentiation therapy for acute promyelocytic leukemia and developed the reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction assay used to diagnose this leukemia and monitor minimal residual disease. His team also found a novel protein destruction mechanism that caused degradation of the dominant-negative translocation product found in this leukemia, PML/RAR-alpha. A novel mechanism responsible for diverse retinoid clinical effects was found to occur through a common pathway that caused G1 arrest. This permitted a differentiation program to proceed or genomic damage to be repaired, depending on the cell context. This mechanism activated proteasomal degradation of G1 cyclins, causing G1 arrest. His team engineered transgenic mice that targeted expression in the lung of wild-type or degradation-resistant cyclin E proteins. These mice recapitulated frequent features of human lung carcinogenesis, especially when degradation-resistant cyclin E species were present. Transplantable transgenic lung cancer models were developed from these mice. These models are useful to study lung cancer biology and to find ways to combat lung cancer, by treating or preventing this most common cause of cancer death for men and women in our society. The team has launched and completed proof of principle clinical trials and discovered that the same degradation pathways identified in the laboratory were activated in cancers of patients.
Dr. Dmitrovsky was on the faculty at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center for more than a decade before joining Dartmouth as the Andrew G. Wallace Professor and chair of the Pharmacology department. He served a decade as chair of the Pharmacology department and completed a term as Acting Dean of the Dartmouth Medical School. Dr. Dmitrovsky serves on several editorial boards including Cancer Research, Clinical Cancer Research, Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, Cancer Prevention Research, and the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. He is Associate Director of the Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation and serves on scientific advisory boards, including the Board of Scientific Counselors of the National Cancer Institute and the Lance Armstrong Foundation. He testified before the President's Cancer Panel about overcoming barriers to translational research and now serves as chair of the Board of Scientific Counselors of the National Cancer Institute for Clinical Sciences and Epidemiology. Dr. Dmitrovsky is an American Cancer Society Clinical Research Professor and conducts bidirectional translational research.
Dr. Eric Jorgenson
is a research scientist at the Kaiser Permanente Northern California Division of Research. His primary research interest focuses on the genetics of common, complex diseases and their treatment. He is currently the principal investigator of an NIH-funded study to examine the genetic factors underlying alcohol consumption and misuse in the Research Program on Genes, Environment, and Health (RPGEH) cohort. His primary research interests include genetic determinants of cancer risk, progression, and treatment response, genetic epidemiology, pharmacogenomics, genetic factors influencing alcohol, tobacco, and drug use, genetics of vision disorders, and genetic and environmental influences on racial/ethnic variation in disease risk and treatment outcomes.
Additional details about the keynote speakers are included in an attached file sent to those on the cancer-program list server. To request this information, please drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note that abstracts are emailed to email@example.com. Deadlines are September 6 for oral presentations and September 13 for poster presentations, respectfully. However, all attendees (whether submitting abstracts or not) must register.
Venues: Poster sessions at the Marriott Courtyard Hotel; speakers at the cancer center auditorium. Meeting begins at the cancer center.
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