July 18-20 2017 | Boston

Register by Friday, June 23 to save up to $500

 

Speakers

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Tom Brennan
Vice President, Pharmacology & Bioanalytics
FivePrime Therapeutics

Tom has served as the head of pharmacology at FivePrime Therapeutics Inc. since 2005 and currently is Vice President of Pharmacology and Bioanalytics.  From 2003 – 2005 Tom was CEO and cofounder of a privately held biotech company using mouse models to identify new targets for CNS disorders.  From 1997 – 2003 he was a senior scientist at Deltagen Inc. where he co-managed transgenic and phenotyping operations of a large collection of 1500 mouse knockouts. Prior to that, he held postdoctoral positions at Genentech and UCSF.  Tom received is PhD in biomedicine in 1990 from the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston where his work focused on myogenin and the developmental control of muscle cell fate.  

Andrew Rhim
CPRIT Scholar in Cancer Research, Associate Director for Translational Research in Pancreatic Cancer Research, Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine in
Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition, MD Anderson Cancer Center

Dr. Andrew Rhim is an Instructor of Medicine and Attending Gastroenterologist at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. He completed his medical education and was the Sir William Osler Fellow in Medicine and Gastroenterology at Penn. Dr. Rhim trained in the laboratory of Ben Stanger, MD, PhD, previous Pancreatic Cancer Action Network Career Development Award recipient, and established lineage-labeled genetic mouse models of pancreatic cancer to study invasion, dissemination, and metastasis. He has established his own independent laboratory focused on the biology of pre-cancerous lesions of the pancreas and the molecular and cellular events that occur during the transition to pancreatic cancer (PDAC). The overarching goal of his studies is to learn more about how PDAC develops in order to devise new strategies for early diagnosis and treatment of patients. His work has been published in prestigious biomedical journals, including CellCancer CellGenes and Development, and Gastroenterology.

Day Two

Thursday July 20, 2017

09.40 | Evaluating Preclinical Predictions for the Development of Combinations with Targeted Therapies & Immunotherapies

Barbara Joyce-Shaikh
Associate Principal Scientist, Immunoncology
Merck Research Laboratories

Barbara Joyce-Shaikh completed her B.S in with Molecular Biology at San Jose State University. She has more than 20 years of biotech industry experience specializing in translational systems of immune function and immunoncology. Her work has contributed several patents as well as medical literature published in journals such as Nature, Immunity, Nature Medicine, and the Journal of Experimental Medicine. She is currently a Project Leader in the Discovery Immunoncology group at Merck Research Laboratories, Palo Alto (Formerly DNAX Research Institute). Her current research utilizes humanized mouse systems and is focused on understanding how tumor stroma and immune cell interactions can be altered with novel immunomodulatory agents in different cancers.

Workshop C

Tuesday July 18, 2017

15.30 |

Optimizing Humanized Mice Models for the Advancement of Cancer Immunotherapies

Edward Rosfjord
Senior Principal Scientist
Pfizer

Cancer researcher since 1990.  PhD from University of Nebraska Medical Center, Eppley Cancer Center 1990-1995.  Postdoctoral Fellow – Lombardi Cancer Center at Georgetown University Medical Center (Washington DC) where I worked under Robert Dickson 1995 – 2000.  Principal Scientist at Wyeth and Pfizer Oncology Research Units from 2000 – present (14 years). I participated in the discovery of HKI-272 (neratinib) in addition to being involved in several other discovery programs.  I have performed in vivo oncology research in Pfizer since 2007.  I have been responsible for the Pfizer Oncology Research Unit collection of patient-derived xenografts since 2009.

Michael Brehm
Associate Professor, The Robert and Sandra Glass Term Chair
in Diabetes, University of Massachusetts Medical School

Dr. Brehm received his Ph.D. from the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine. He is currently an Assistant Professor in the Program in Molecular Medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and a member of the UMass Diabetes Center of Excellence. Dr. Brehm’s research program is focused on understanding how human effector T cells are regulated, and his laboratory is actively using “humanized” mice to model human T cell responses. Dr. Brehm has published over 80 manuscripts and reviews and is supported by funding from the JDRF, NIAID, NIDDK and the Helmsley Charitable Trust.

Workshop C

Tuesday July 18, 2017

15.30 |

Optimizing Humanized Mice Models for the Advancement of Cancer Immunotherapies

Serena Silver
Senior Investigator, Group Leader, Oncology
Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research

Dr. Serena Silver leads the Molecular Pharmacology (MP) group in Oncology Drug Discovery at the Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research.  The MP group uses innovative strategies to design, develop and apply disease relevant cellular assays to drive Oncology drug discovery and impact the treatment of cancer patients. Prior to joining NIBR, Serena worked in Oncology Drug Discovery at Sanofi and led screening efforts in the RNAi Platform at the Broad Institute.

Davy (Xuesong) Ouyang
Senior Director of Translational Oncology
Crown Bioscience

Davy has extensive industry/academic research experience, particularly in areas of oncology and mouse genetics. His research has spanned many aspects of cancer biology and pharmacology, centering on interrogating the molecular mechanisms of human cancer using rodent models. He has worked at Merck Research Laboratory (New Jersey) for 7 years, first as a senior scientist leading RNAi GEMM development, and later as an associate principal scientist working on drug target identification and validation. Prior to industry, he completed his PhD and post-doctoral trainings in oncology with two international leaders in the prostate cancer field, Dr. Y. C. Wong at the University of Hong Kong, and Dr. Cory Abate-Shen at Rutgers University/Columbia University, respectively. He has published over 30 research papers in the biomedical field.  

Day One

Wednesday July 19, 2017

09.10 | Developing Checkpoint Target Humanized Models For Preclinical Efficacy Assessment

Christopher Murriel
Senior Scientist II
OncoMed Pharmaceuticals

Christopher is a senior scientist at OncoMed Pharmaceuticals and is responsible for the identification, development, characterization, and application of PDX and traditional cancer cell line xenografts, as well as orthotopic-based tumor mouse models for pre-clinical oncology drug development. In addition, Christopher lead studies to identify mechanisms of action of OncoMed's current pipeline of biologics and partnered small molecule inhibitors to support clinical decisions and pharmacodynamic (PD) biomarker development. More recent work includes exploring cancer evasion of immune system regulation using de novo and syngeneic in vivo mouse models. In 2011, Christopher joined the Cancer Biology Department at OncoMed Pharmaceuticals where he works to test OncoMed’s pipeline of new therapeutic antibodies in preclinical models of cancer using their bank of early passage primary human tumor xenografts as well as genetically engineered mouse models. Christopher received his B.A. from Washington University in St. Louis, MO, where he majored in Chemistry with a concentration in biochemistry. He next received his Ph.D. from Daria Mochly-Rosen’s lab in the Department of Molecular Pharmacology at Stanford University School of Medicine where he studied the effects of protein kinase C in rodent models of cardiac ischemia and reperfusion damage. His work at Genentech focused on identifying synthetic lethal interacting partners with mutant KRAS, utilizing high-throughput RNAi screening platforms. In addition, he helped develop genetically engineered mouse models of conditional non-small cell lung carcinoma and pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma for pre-clinical in vivo drug testing.

David Teachey
Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Divisions of Hematology and Oncology
Blood and Marrow Transplant, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

David Teachey is a laboratory-based physician scientist at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. His research focuses on investigating novel therapeutics in acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and autoimmune lymphoproliferative syndrome, using preclinical models. His research in ALL is dedicated to investigating leukemia biology in children with high risk-disease. In collaboration with the Children’s Oncology Group (COG), he has developed xenografts from over 300 unique patients with B and T-ALL and has used these xenografts to investigate a number of novel therapies, including immunotherapies. Many of these therapies have been translated into the clinic and Dr. Teachey has served as Chair or Vice Chair for the clinical trial. His laboratory also focuses on investigating cytokine biology after cellular therapies. Dr. Teachey is a member of the ALL Executive Committee for COG and is the Vice Chair for ALL biology.

Mark Paris PhD.
Associate Director, Translational Applications
Mitra Biotech

Day Two

Thursday July 20, 2017

10.10 | A Novel Phenotypic Platform for Predicting Tumor Response

Jason Fleming
Chairman of Gastrointestinal Oncology
Moffitt Cancer Center

Day One

Wednesday July 19, 2017

09.40 | Improving Translational Decision Making to Influence Clinical Trial Design & Determine Endpoints

Hui Wang
Principal Scientist, In Vivo Pharmacology, Oncology Research & Development,
Pfizer

Dr. Hui Wang has been with Pfizer Oncology Research and Development Unit at La Jolla for over 6 years. As a lead in oncology in vivo pharmacology group, Dr. Wang has been actively working on preclinical models for drug discovery and development programs including small molecule and biologics projects for targeted therapies and immunotherapies. Dr. Wang’s preclinical experiences include FDA approved drug Xakori and Ibrance, and currently under clinical trial drugs Lorlatinib. PF-05082566 (4-1BB), Avelumab (PD-L1) and other early stage immuno-oncology (IO) and cancer signaling drugs. Dr. Wang’s expertise in oncology drug discovery is focused on the area of preclinical models for efficacy study, pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic  (PKPD) study, rationale combination study and new model development. In addition, Dr. Wang has extensive experiences in working with various CRO companies in oncology preclinical studies. Before joining Pfizer, Dr. Wang was an American Cancer Society  (ACS) Postdoctoral Fellow and NCI Postdoctoral Fellow at the Ohio State James Cancer Center with focus on cancer genetics and biology  using novel transgenic mouse tumor models. Dr. Wang received his PhD in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology Program from The Ohio State University.

Luke Dow
Assistant Professor of Biochemistry in Medicine
Weill Cornell Medicine

Luke completed his undergraduate and graduate work in cancer genetics, in Melbourne, Australia, and moved to New York to join the laboratory of Scott Lowe for his postdoctdoral work in 2008. Here he set out to develop new approaches to interrogate gene function in the mouse, specifically, the in vivo application of inducible (and reversible) shRNAs, and inducible CRISPR/Cas9-based genome editing tools. His lab at Weill Cornell Medicine is focused on understanding the biology of colorectal cancer (CRC). They generate tailored pre-clinical models – based on genetic alterations frequently observed in human CRC – to investigate how genetic context and local environmental cues influence the onset, progression and therapeutic response of CRC. His lab uses CRISPR and shRNA technologies to recapitulate the genetic alterations seen in human cancers, and explore potential new targeted therapies for advanced disease.

Day Two

Thursday July 20, 2017

16.40 | Exploring Tumor Initiation & Progression of Colorectal Cancer Using Flexible Genetic Models

Renuka Iyer
Section Chief GI Medical Oncology
Roswell Park Cancer Institute

Neal Goodwin
VP, Corporate Research Development
Champions Oncology

Neal Goodwin, PhD serves as Vice President Corporate Research Development for Champions Oncology. His responsibilities include development of the patient derived tumorgraft pharmacology portfolio for both the personalized oncology and translational oncology solutions. He previously served as the Director Research and Development and the founding Program Director of JAX Cancer Services. Dr. Goodwin was the co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer of ProNAi Therapeutics, an advanced clinical trial-staged oncology therapeutics firm. He also previously served as a senior research scientist in genomic technologies at Pharmacia. Dr. Goodwin received a Ph.D. in Microbiology from The University of Montana and served a postdoctoral fellowship in functional genomics at The Jackson Laboratory with John Schimenti (now at Cornell).

Day Two

Thursday July 20, 2017

09.10 | Advanced PDX Tumor Biology Platforms for Drug Advancement

Gregor Adams
Principal Scientist,
Kite Pharma Inc

Saad Kenderian
Assistant Professor of Medicine & Oncology
Mayo Clinic

Saad S. Kenderian, MD is a senior associate consultant in the Division of Hematology at the Mayo Clinic. He holds the academic rank of Assistant Professor of Medicine and Oncology, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine. After completing a combined fellowship in hematology and medical oncology, he joined the Division of Hematology at Mayo, received the Mayo Scholar award and joined the Translational Research Program of the University of Pennsylvania as a Mayo Scholar, where he worked in T cell immunotherapy for over two years. He returned to the Mayo Clinic in early 2016. Dr. Kenderian has been honored with numerous awards during his training and career. He is a member of the American Society of Hematology, American Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation, American Association for Cancer Research. Dr. Kenderian has authored or co-authored more than 25 articles in peer-reviewed journals and he holds several patents in the field of engineered T cell therapy.

Workshop B

Tuesday July 18, 2017

12.00 |

Characterizing Preclinical Models for Advancing Cell Therapies

David Largaespada
American Cancer Society Research Professor, Department of Pediatrics
Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota

Dr. David Largaespada, Ph.D, is a Full Professor in the Departments of Pediatrics and Genetics, Cell Biology and Development and the Associate Director for Basic Research in the Masonic Cancer Center at the University of Minnesota.  He is an authority on mouse genetics, gene modification and cancer genes.  He received his B.S. in Genetics and Cell Biology from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities in 1987 and his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1992. He was awarded the American Cancer Society Research Professor Award in 2013, the highest award given by the ACS. Dr. Largaespada has published over 160 scientific articles and has co-founded three biotechnology companies. Dr. Largaespada's laboratory is working to exploit insertional mutagenesis for cancer gene discovery and functional genomics in the mouse. The Largaespada lab pioneered the use a transposon system, called Sleeping Beauty (SB), for insertional mutagenesis in mouse somatic cells. SB is being used for forward genetic screens for cancer genes involved in sarcoma, hepatocellular carcinoma, and mammary, gastro-intestinal tract and NF1 syndrome-associated cancers.  An emphasis of this work is on genes that promote metastasis or govern treatment sensitivity.  Also, novel mouse models are being used for preclinical evaluation of new drugs and drug combinations for cancer treatment.    

Robert (Jinze) Li
Toxicologist, Pharmacology SubTeam Leader Safety Assessment,
Genentech

Dr. Robert Li a diplomat of the American Board of Toxicology, with almost 10 years of biopharmaceutical experience in translational research and toxicology assessment.  Dr. Li is currently a toxicologist and pharmacology sub-team leader in Safety Assessment at Genentech.  As a toxicology project representative and the pharmacology sub-team leader, he leads safety assessments of both small and large pharmaceuticals spanning a wide range of therapeutic areas (e.g. oncology, immunology, and cancer immunology).  He also serves on multiple toxicology expert working groups at Genentech to streamline nonclinical safety assessment strategy.  Prior to Genentech, Dr. Li worked as Senior Research Investigator at Bristol-Myers Squibb to support toxicology and immunotoxicology assessment for biotherapeutics such as leading nonclinical immunogenicity assessment of biotherapeutics.  He received his PhD in immunotoxicology from the University of Toronto, followed by a postdoctoral training at Hoffmann-La Roche.  Dr. Li has been serving on multiple HESI Immunotoxicology Technical Committees such as hypersensitivity, biotherapeutics inhalation safety, translational immunotoxicology, and immunomodulators and cancer risk etc.  He is author/co-author of many peer-reviewed publications (e.g. 2 book chapters) and also a number of conference abstracts/posters.  He is also an invited speaker for several well-recognized conferences including the Society of Toxicology annual meeting.

Rick Huntress
Director of Business Development, Clinical & In Vivo Services
The Jackson Laboratory

Rick Huntress is a Business Development professional with over 25 years of experience in the preclinical drug discovery field. Mr. Huntress’ basic research experience includes molecular biology and g-protein receptor cloning for Dr. Steven Fink at the Massachusetts General Hospital and then a year of yeast genetics at UMASS Medical School. His experience working with mouse models began in 1990 and initially focused on genetically modified mouse (GMM) development and characterization. This gradually expanded to include the management of studies in oncology, neurobiology, inflammation and other murine models systems. In his current role at The Jackson Laboratory as the Director, Business Development, Mr. Huntress works with both Biotech and Pharmaceutical companies to identify murine models and testing platforms suitable for early stage target validation and efficacy studies. Recent advances in humanization of murine models have allowed for JAX’s expansion into the immune oncology drug discovery studies and JAX has new data in this area to discuss.

Day One

Wednesday July 19, 2017

10.10 | Patient-Derived Tumor Xenografts in Humanized NSG-SGM3 Mice: A New Immuno-Oncology Platform

Vinagolu Rajasekhar
Senior Research Scientist
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Dr. Vinagolu K. Rajasekhar, a Senior Research Scientist at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, has been developing humanized patient derived xenograft (PDX) models of metastatic cancers in the institutional collaboration with Dr. John Healey, the Chief of Orthopedics Service.  Dr. Rajasekhar has also purified cancer stem cells (CSCs) from human prostate cancer PDXs, discovered a novel set of biomarkers for the tumor driving cells, and delineated a clinically relevant functional signaling pathway in prostate cancer (www.Genomeweb.com). This study unveils a new direction to live bio-bank patient CSC-derived xenograft (PDXCSC) models of human tumors, which form an excellent and replenishable resource for understanding patient personalized signaling cross-talks between the CSCs and their specific microenvironment as well as for therapeutic testing and co-clinical trials.

Workshop A

Tuesday July 18, 2017

08.30 |

Characterization of PDX Models in the Context of Humanized Mice

Moony Tseng
Research Scientist II, Cancer Cell Line Factory Project Lead
Broad Institute

Shruthi Naik
Research Associate, Department of Molecular Medicine
Mayo Clinic

Dr. Naik is an investigator in the Department of Molecular Medicine at Mayo Clinic and Vice President of Comparative Oncology for Vyriad, Inc. Her goal is to bridge the gap between research and clinical translation to deliver promising technology to cancer patients in need. Her research has involved the design and development of novel oncolytic virus therapies, viruses engineered to selectively lyse tumor cells while robustly activating antitumor immune responses. She has led the effort to utilize comparative oncology; the evaluation of novel cancer therapies in client owned dogs, to inform and optimize clinical development of Vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) based oncolytic therapies. Recent comparative oncology studies have established the safety, toxicity, absence of virus shedding leading to approval and initiation of a Phase 1 clinical trial evaluating intravenous recombinant oncolytic VSV therapy in patients with relapsed cancer. Dr. Naik current work focuses on the use of correlative pharmacokinetic analyses and immune monitoring to provide insights into and identify biomarkers predictive of therapeutic response, highlighting the utility of comparative oncology as powerful method to test and advance novel immunotherapy development.

Sidi Chen
Assistant Professor, Genetics
Yale University

Day Two

Thursday July 20, 2017

15.40 | CRISPR Genome Editing & Mouse Models of Cancer

Maryland Franklin
Vice President, Scientific Development
MI Bioresearch

Received my Ph.D. from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in Medical Genetics where I studied cancer gene therapy approaches for ovarian and pancreatic cancers. I went on to a post-doctoral position at the University of Washington followed by a position in the Preclinical Development group at Zymogenetics. Prior to joining Molecular Imaging I was in the In Vivo Pharmacology group at OSI Pharmaceuticals, which then became part of Astellas for over 9 years. During the last 3 of those years I was Director of In Vivo Pharmacology. I’ve been at Molecular Imaging for just over a year.

Lee Coney
Chief Scientific Officer
Envigo

At Envigo, Lee is Chief Scientific Officer of biologics.  He is also a serving committee member on the Monoclonal Antibody Expert Working Group of the National Centre for the 3Rs, The BIA Manufacturing Advisory Committee and the RSC / RPSGB Joint Pharmaceutical Analysis Group. He has a well-rounded knowledge of the regulatory environment for biologics and particular expertise in the analysis of protein and viral products. Lee was recruited by Huntingdon Life Sciences at the end of 2004 to take a leading role in handling enquiries from those customers developing biopharmaceutical products. Lee brought to the role hands-on experience of biopharmaceutical drug development gained in companies such as; Cantab Pharmaceuticals, Xenova and CellFactors. During his time in the biotechnology industry, he was involved in developing therapies including: vaccines,recombinant proteins; monoclonal antibodies; immunomodulatory molecules; viral and non-viral gene delivery systems; and cell-based therapies.

Joshua Breunig
Assistant Professor, Board of Governors Regenerative Medicine Institute
Department of Biomedical Sciences, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

Joshua Breunig, PhD, is an Assistant Professor at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center with a joint appointment in the Department of Medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.  Dr. Breunig received his Ph.D. from Yale University.  Currently, he investigates the transcriptional regulation of neural precursor cells (NPCs) in the brain, specifically exploring the pathways governing the transformation of NPCs into brain tumor progenitors. Using a next generation brain tumor models, his lab introduces patient-specific mutations to create “personalized” tumors in immunocompetent animal models. Dr. Breunig is supported by funding from the American Cancer Society, CIRM, and NCI.

Day Two

Thursday July 20, 2017

16.10 | Combining CRISPR/Cas9 Gene Targeting & Single-Copy Somatic Transgenesis for Preclinical Brain Tumor Research

Shiva Kazerounian
Senior Scientist
Berg Pharma

Shiva Kazerounian received her PhD training at Thomas Jefferson University, department of clinical pharmacology with focus on colorectal cancer. She, then, took a fellowship program at Harvard Medical School/Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, where she concentrated on breast cancer research. After finishing her postdoctoral fellowship, Dr. Kazerounian joined EMD Serono where she focus on using humanized mouse model for developing immune-oncology therapeutics. Later, as a member of preclinical pharmacology team at Boston Biomedical, Dr. Kazerounian worked on efficacy, PK/PD and combination studies of cancer stem cell therapeutics. Currently, Dr. Kazerounian is leading the in vivo pharmacology team at BERG Pharmaceutical with a focus on anti-tumor metabolic modulator, BPM31510. Her team is responsible to address preclinical exposure and combination profiles of all BERG pipelines with a focus on programs in lead optimization.

Jenni Bernoulli
COO
Pharmatest Services

Dr. Bernoulli joined the preclinical CRO Pharmatest Services Ltd through the merger of Orthotopix Ltd at the end of 2009. Prior to that she was active in academic research at the University of Turku, Finland, and published many research articles in preclinical research, especially in the field of prostatic diseases. She is currently involved in the development of novel preclinical cancer efficacy models in Pharmatest.

Brian Van Ness
Professor, Department of Genetics, Cell Biology and Development, College of
Biological Sciences, University of Minnesota Cancer Center

Brian Van Ness, Ph.D., is a professor in the Department of Genetics, Cell Biology and Development at the University of Minnesota Medical School.  He served as the Head of the Department for nine years, then served as a Director of the Institute of Human Genetics.   After receiving a bachelor’s degree in biology and a master’s degree in chemistry from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania in Indiana, PA, Dr. Van Ness obtained his Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Minnesota. He conducted his postdoctoral work in molecular immunology with the Institute for Cancer Research in Fox Chase, PA.  His current research focuses on exploring how genetic variations influence disease progression and therapeutic response, particularly with regard to myeloma.   He has published over 150 papers on his research studies.  He serves on the Scientific Advisory Board of the International Myeloma Foundation as well as GeneSpark; and consults for genomic diagnostic companies as well as Law firms.  He has been active in regulatory and legal issues in genomics, both as expert consultant in patent litigation, as well as a member of an NIH supported committee, making recommendations on ethics and return of genetic results.

Ran Li
Postdoctoral Scientist, Roger Kamm’s Lab, Department of Biological
Engineering & Mechanical Engineering, MIT

Ran completed his undergraduate study in Chemical Engineering at the University of Michigan. There, he worked with Prof. Shuichi Takayama on developing organ-on-a-chip models to mimic the physiology of blood brain barrier (BBB) and alveoli. He completed his Ph.D. training in Biological Engineering in Professor Roger Kamm’s lab, where he developed microfluidic platforms to recapitulate the tumor microenvironment. Using these microfluidic systems, he investigated the interaction between tumor cells and immune cells, as well as the effects of tumor-associated mechanical forces on immune cells.

Mohit Sachdeva
Senior Scientist
Horizon Discovery

Dr. Sachdeva is a Sr. Scientist at Horizon Discovery Ltd-St Louis, MO. He is modeling PdX tumors, both in vitro and in vivo. He has established a variety of valuable techniques including in vitro spheroid culturing of PdX with drug screening platforms, cancer stem cells in PdX and in vivo Crispr cas9 gene-knockout screens to study the tumor clonal progression. In addition, he has been working towards developing humanized animal models using Crisp/cas9. Prior to joining Horizon, he was a Scientist at Orion Genomics- St Louis, MO, where he established multiple genetic and epigenetic screens/assays to better phenotype clinical tumors. He successfully completed his postdoctoral training under supervision of Dr. David G. Kirsch at Duke University, where he studied genetic mechanisms underlying sarcoma metastasis in primary tumor model system. He has received several honors, including a research grant from AACR, and published in peer-reviewed journals such as JCI & PNAS. He received his PhD in Cell biology at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, IL-USA and his undergraduate degree in Pharmacy at University of Delhi-Delhi, INDIA.  

Mukund Seshadri
Professor of Oncology, Departments of Pharmacology & Therapeutics, Oral Medicine/Head & Neck Surgery
Roswell Park Cancer Institute

Mukund currently holds the position of Professor of Oncology at Roswell Park Cancer Institute with appointments in the Departments of Pharmacology & Therapeutics and Oral Medicine/Head and Neck Surgery. Mukund also serves as the Scientific Director of the Translational Imaging Shared Resource (TISR) at RPCI and in this position he oversees all imaging services (preclinical/clinical) and provides a strategic direction and leadership for the resource. He actively participate in clinical imaging research studies in oral/head and neck cancer patients at RPCI and have strong collaborations with surgeons, oncologists and pathologists at RPCI and the University at Buffalo. Research in his laboratory is focused on three areas: (i) the use of advanced imaging methods such as MRI, CT in preclinical models and in patients to study tumor angiogenesis and response of tumors to novel vascular targeted therapies, (ii) investigation into the potential of imaging-guided therapies for oral cancers, and, (iii) development of novel multifunctional and multimodal nanoparticles for targeted imaging and therapy of cancer. The work is interdisciplinary in nature and draws on concepts from biophysics, cancer biology, pharmacology, molecular biology and therapeutics.

Mohammad Rashidian
Research Fellow, Boston Children Hospital
Harvard Medical School

Mohammad Rashidian received his B.Sci from Sharif University in Tehran in chemistry and M.Sci and PhD degrees in chemical biology from University of Minnesota. He joined Dr. Ploegh lab as a post-doc at the Whitehead Institute/MIT in July 2013, focusing on immunoPET and cancer immunology. The lab has now moved to Boston Children's Hospital/HMS.

Leigh Ellis
Assistant Professor of Pathology, Department of Oncologic Pathology
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Alison Allan
Associate Professor, Departments of Anatomy & Cell Biology & Oncology Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry
Western University