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OncoTargets and Therapy

Dr Farassati

Molecular Medicine, MBRF-STL, United States

Dr Farassati

Editor-in-Chief: Dr Faris Farassati

Dr Faris Farassati is an Associate Professor at the University of Kansas Medical School and the director of the Molecular Medicine Laboratory at this institute. He is a translational cancer scientist focusing on intervention with pro-oncogenic cell signaling machinery in order to treat human malignancies. Therapeutic targets which are identified to be "Cancer-Specific" will be pursued by both gene and drug therapy methods by Dr Farassati's team towards designing a comprehensive translational strategy. Transcriptional targeting of Oncolytic Viruses is a major focus of research for Dr Farassati's group. Ras signaling pathway, as the most important pro-oncogenic signaling pathway involved in generation of human cancers, has been defined as a target for a mutant versions of Herpes Simplex Virus-1(HSV-1). This Ras-Smart virus is named as "Signal-Smart 1" or SS1 virus. Other versions of Oncolytic Viruses developed in this lab include HSV-1 mutants capable of targeting Cancer Stem Cells (CSCs) in a cell-specific manner. These viruses are being developed with the purpose of eliminating CSCs as the main fraction of cells within tumors in charge of repopulating tumors and maintaining different cell types which compose the histological structure of the tumor. Since no therapies currently exist to specifically target CSCs, development of Oncolytic Viruses with such ability can deliver significant potentials for highly effective cancer therapy.

Dr Chhabra

Department of Medicine, University of Connecticut Health Center, United States

Dr Chhabra

Associate Editor: Dr Arvind Chhabra

Dr. Chhabra received his PhD degree from the Central Drug Research Institute  (CDRI), a premier research institute in India, in 2001. He is working as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine, University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Connecticut, since 2008. Dr. Chhabra is working in the area of human cancer immunology and immunotherapy.

Since most human tumor antigens identified are "self-antigens", generation of a potent anti-tumor immune response faces many inherent constraints. Among these constraints include, an extremely low precursor frequency of anti-tumor T cells in most cancer patients and host immune regulatory mechanisms blocking generating of protective anti-tumor immunity. CD4 T cell mediated "help" can facilitate the generation of a productive antigen specific CD8+ cytolytic T lymphocyte (CTL) response, however, engaging CD4 T cells in tumor immunity is quite challenging, especially in an antigen specific manner, as most human tumor are MHC class I positive but MHC class II negative. Dr. Chhabra has developed several innovative approaches to overcome these limitations, utilizing the  human melanoma as a model. Among these approaches include, generation of immunogenic DC by silencing inhibitory molecules, such as IL-10; utilization of "self-translocatable" carrier protein, HSV-VP22, for simultaneous generation of CD4 and CD8 T cell responses; and the creation of donor specific customized MHC class I restricted anti-tumor CD8+ CTL and CD4+ "multifunctional" T cells by engineering human peripheral blood derived T  cells with a MHC class I restricted transgenic T cell receptor (TCR), isolated from melanoma patient derived CD8+ CTL. Dr. Chhabra has also characterized a cell intrinsic, caspase-independent, mitochondria-centric cell death pathway involved in activation induced cell death (AICD)  of human primary anti-tumor T cells, with an objective to generate anti-tumor T cells that can withstand premature AICD and sustain longer in the physiology to produce better clinical outcomes. Dr. Chhabra has published his findings in more than 20 research manuscripts in prominent peer reviewed journals. His work has earned him several awards and honors at national and international cancer immunotherapy platforms. 

In addition to his work on human melanoma model, Dr. Chhabra is also working on extending his TCR engineering expertise to human breast cancer. He is also working on utilizing the human pluripotent stem cells [hPS, i.e. human embryonic stem cells (hES) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS)] for generating patient specific "naive" immune effectors, with an objective to develop an effective patient specific personalized cancer immunotherapy approach.

Dr Cho

Dr Cho

Associate Editor: Dr William Cho

Dr William Cho is a Biomedical Scientist. His main research interests have been focused on cancer studies utilizing high-throughput technologies to discover biomarkers for cancer diagnosis, treatment prediction and prognostication. He is a Chartered Scientist granted by the Science Council (UK), a Registered Chinese Medicine Practitioner (HK), a Fellow Member of several institutes, including the Institute of Biomedical Science (UK), Hong Kong Institute of Biomedical Science and Hong Kong Society for Molecular Diagnostic Sciences. Dr Cho has published over 200 peer-reviewed papers covering cancer biomarkers, proteomics, microRNAs and Chinese medicine.


Dr Dai

Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Florida, United States

Dr Dai

Associate Editor: Dr Yao Dai

Dr. Dai obtained his Ph.D degree in Peking Union Medical College in China. He is now an Assistant Professor in Department of Radiation Oncology at University of Florida. Dr. Dai has been working in the field of cancer biology, radiation therapy and experimental therapeutics for over 15 years. His research involves understanding cancer progression and evaluating therapeutic effects of novel molecular targeting agents. Specifically, his original contributions have been made in three major inter-related areas: i) Studying the impact of hypoxia on cancer metastasis; ii) Evaluating anti-cancer activities of novel molecular agents and natural compounds, and iii) Enhancing treatment efficacies by combination therapy. Dr. Dai’s major focus is prostate cancer, while also covering other cancer types such as lung cancer, breast cancer and colorectal cancer, all of which are life-threatening. The ultimate goal of Dr. Dai’s research is to develop effective therapeutic strategies that can be used to benefit cancer patients. Dr. Dai has accomplished many publications, including research articles, reviews, book chapters and patents. He also serves as an ad hoc reviewer for over 20 international journals in biomedical science.

Dr Espinoza

Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Mississippi Medical Center, United States

Dr Espinoza

Associate Editor: Dr Ingrid Espinoza

Dr. Espinoza is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine, and Biochemistry, and a member of the Cancer Institute at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC). She has a Ph.D. in Biomedical Sciences and is a Clinical Research Certified investigator with expertise in cancer. Dr. Espinoza obtained her Ph.D. in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Chile. In 2004, she moved to U.S.A. to complete her postdoctoral training at Evanston Northwestern Healthcare (ENH), Northwestern University, Evanston, IL. Since then, her research have been focus in: i). Identification of molecular biomarkers involved in drug resistance in tumors including breast, colorectal, and prostate, and ii). Development of combinatorial-targeted therapies to revert treatment resistance. In 2008, she moved to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, as a Professional Associate in Research. Here she continued her work in breast and pancreatic cancer. Currently, her research focused in the identification and validation of molecular markers for radiation and drug resistance in prostate and colorectal cancer; the impact of hypoxia on cancer progression; and the development of new combinatorial therapies to revert treatment resistance. Dr. Espinoza has accomplished many publications, including research articles, reviews, and book chapters. She serves as an ad hoc reviewer for several international journals in biomedical science. She is also member of several international scientific and clinical societies.


Dr Farghaly

OB & GYN, The Medical College of Cornell University, United States

Dr Farghaly

Associate Editor: Dr Samir A. Farghaly

Samir A. Farghaly is a Physician / Scientist and national and international expert in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Joan and Sanford I. Weill College of Medicine, Sandra and Edward Meyer Cancer Center and, the New York Presbyterian Hospital/ Weill Cornell Medical Center- Cornell University, New York, NY – USA.  He received his M.D. from London University and his PhD degree in molecular biology from London University. He was affiliated with major London University teaching hospitals, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons/ Columbia University medical center, New York, NY-USA.   He received several national and international clinical and research awards.  He has been an invited speaker at several national and international conferences on Women’s health, Molecular genetic of female cancers, Gynecological cancer and oncologic radical surgical techniques.  He is a member of several national and international societies, organizations, foundations of Women health and Cancer.   He is the founder Editor-in Chief of Current Trends in Gynecologic Oncology, and The International journal of Gynecological, Obstetrical and Reproductive Medicine Research journals.   He acts as Senior Editor/ Editor and member of editorial boards, editorial advisory boards of (18) international medical journals on Gynecological Cancers, Gene expression &Therapy, Women’s Health and Gynecology.  He acted as guest editors of (4) special issues of international medical journals on oncology, Gynecology and gene therapy.  He is a reviewer for several medical journals on Obstetrics & Gynecology, molecular Genetics and therapy, Oncology, and Surgery.  He has published 105 articles in reputed peer review journals.  He has written several book chapters, and is an author and editor of (2) books on ovarian cancer published in 2012, and the third one published in Nov. 2013. The fourth book on endometrial cancer was published in January 2015.  The fifth book on recent advances in diagnosis and management Gynecologic cancers was published in March 2016, and the sixth book on ovarian cancer immunotherapy will be published in Feb. 2017.

Prof. Dr. Pietersz

Prof. Dr. Pietersz

Associate Editor: Geoffrey Pietersz

Prof Pietersz is a Professor and Senior Principal Research Fellow at the Burnet Institute and Head of the Bio-organic & Medicinal Chemistry Laboratory, Melbourne, Australia. He obtained his BSc (Hons) and PhD at the University of Melbourne in synthetic organic chemistry in the area of natural products. With a keen interest in working at the interface of biology and organic chemistry he did his postdoctoral work at the Research Centre for cancer and Transplantation (RCCT) at the Melbourne University on drug, toxin, isotope-monoclonal antibody conjugates. During this period he developed many novel immunoconjugates of a number of anti-cancer drugs.
In 1991 the RCCT became the Austin Research Institute affiliated with the Austin & Repatriation Medical Centre, Heidelberg. Prof Pietersz developed a vaccine delivery system based on bio-conjugation of tumour associated antigen, mucin 1 to the mannose carbohydrate, mannan which targets antigen presenting cells. Successful efficacy studies in animal models led to several clinical trials in cancer and eventually licensing the IP to Prima Biomed Ltd and Ascend Biopharma Ltd. The antigen-mannan conjugates were also able to prime mucosal and systemic responses when administered via the intranasal route and demonstrated for influenza, RSV and rotavirus. Professor Pietersz also designed several small chemical entities using structure based design that inhibit immune complexes binding to the FcγRIIa receptor for inflammation.

In 2006 the Austin Research Institute merged with the Burnet Institute. His current research is still focussed on applying bio-conjugation strategies to solve biological problems in inflammation, drug delivery and vaccine delivery and application in translational research. He has a part-time position with Ascend Biopharma Ltd as Director of Technology Development. Prof Pietersz holds professorial appointments at Melbourne University and Monash University.

Dr Vigil Gonzales

Department of Hematology/Oncology and Stem cell Transplant, University of Iowa Holden Cancer Center, United States

Dr Vigil Gonzales

Associate Editor: Dr. Carlos Vigil-Gonzales

Dr Vigil-Gonzales is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at University of Iowa Holden Cancer Center department of Hematology /Oncology and Stem Cell transplantation.

He received his MD at Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia and completed his post graduate education at University of Texas MD Anderson and Vanderbilt University in Tennessee in leukemia and stem cell transplant respectively. He is a translational and clinical cancer researcher focusing on especially on myeloid malignancies in relapsed and refractory settings.

He is member of several national and international societies in hematology malignancies and had served as committee member in several occasions.

Dr Vigil-Gonzales has been invited speaker in national and international conference , is author and co-author of multiple articles and abstracts published in prestigious journals such as Blood, Journal of Clinical Oncology and others. 

Dr Xu

Department of General Surgery, Zhongshan Hospital affiliated to Fudan University, China (PRC)

Dr Xu

Associate Editor: Professor Jianmin Xu

Dr. Jianmin Xu graduated from Shanghai Medical University in 1990 and was trained as an attending surgeon and specialist of general surgery from 1994 to 1999 at Zhongshan Hospital, Shanghai Medical University. In 1999, he received the Ph.D. degree in General Surgery from Shanghai Medical University. In 2001, he studied at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, and in 2004, he studied at Hospital Ambroise Paré, Paris. He focuses on basic research and clinical treatment of colorectal cancer and liver metastasis, standardized treatment and minimally invasive operation of colorectal cancer, and Da Vinci robotic assisted colorectal surgery.

For the achievements of “Surgical and Comprehensive Treatment of Colorectal Liver Metastasis”, he has won the First Prize of Shanghai Medical Achievements (2011), the First Prize of Science and Technology Progress Award presented by the Ministry of Education (2011), and the First Prize of Shanghai Science and Technology Progress Award (2012). He was selected as one of Outstanding Academic Leaders of Shanghai Health System in 2011, and winner of Shanghai Outstanding Leading Talents in 2012.

Professor Xu is currently the Deputy Director of Department of General Surgery, Zhongshan Hospital, the Deputy Director of Center of Colorectal Cancer, Fudan University, the Chief of Multi-Disciplinary Team of Colorectal Cancer, Zhongshan Hospital, and the Deputy Director of Teaching and Research Section of Surgery, Zhongshan Hospital, Fudan University. He conducted several national projects, and served as an expert in organizations such as Colorectal Surgeon Committee of Chinese Medical Doctor Association. He has published a number of original and review articles, including publications as first and corresponding author in Annals of Surgery and Journal of Clinical Oncology. 

Dr Yamada

Surgery, University of Illinois, United States

Dr Yamada

Associate Editor: Dr Tohru Yamada

Dr. Tohru Yamada is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Surgery, Division of Surgical Oncology at the University of Illinois, College of Medicine. Dr. Yamada was a Post-Doctoral Fellow in the school’s Department of Microbiology & Immunology. He received his B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. in Biotechnology from Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan. His research interests and expertise are the discovery and development of new class of peptide-based anticancer agents and carriers for imaging agent targeting cancers on the basis of molecular biology, protein/peptide chemistry, cell biology and cancer biology. Dr. Yamada is also Director, Drug Development of CDG Therapeutics, Inc., a clinical-stage biotechnology company (Chicago, IL) engaged in the development and commercialization of proprietary peptides derived from pathogenic and non-pathogenic bacteria and green plants. He holds ~25 issued and pending US and international patents, and has authored a number of original research/review/news articles featured in Nature Medicine, Nature Review Clinical Oncology, Science, Lancet Oncology etc. Dr. Yamada is currently a member of the Editorial Board of several peer-reviewed scientific journals such as International Journal of Nanomedicine.


Dr Yang

Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, United States

Dr Yang

Associate Editor: Dr Xuyu Yang

Dr.Yang is a research scientist at Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health. He obtained his Ph.D in XiangYa School of Medicine, Central South University, in the area of pathology and Pathophysiology. His research focus on the molecular mechanisms underlying tumor metastasis, and identification of new target for cancer gene therapy in pre-clinical and clinical evaluations.

Editorial Board

Professor Josep M. Argiles, Department of Biochemistry and Biomedicine, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain

Rolf F. Barth, M.D, Academy Professor, Department of Pathology, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio

Yiwen Bu, Hollings Cancer Center, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC, USA

Barbara Ann Burtness, MD, Professor of Medicine (Medical Oncology); Clinical Research Program Leader, Head and Neck Cancers Program; Co-Director, Developmental Therapeutics Research Program, Yale Cancer Center, New Haven, CT, USA

Fung-Lung Chung, Professor, Department of Oncology, Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC, USA

Jean-Luc Coll, Director of Research, Institute for Advanced Biosciences, La Tronche, France

George Ding, Department of Radiation Oncology, Biomedical Research Education & Training, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, USA

Beatrice Eymin, Team RNA Splicing, Cell Signaling and Response to Therapies, Institut Albert Bonniot, France

Saad Khan, Hematology and Oncology, UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas Texas, USA

Muthusamy Kunnimalaiyaan, PhD, Assistant Professor of Surgery, Division of Surgical Oncology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, USA.

Axel S. Merseburger, Professor and Chairman of the Department of Urology, University Hospital Schleswig-Holstein, Germany

Shakeel Modak, Member and Attending, Department of Pediatrics, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, USA

Gianmaria Pennelli, MD, Assistant Professor in Pathology, Department of Medicine (DIMED), University of Padova, Italy.

Dr Rituraj Purohit, Senior Scientist at CSIR-Institute of Himalayan Bioresource Technology, Palampur, India.

James A Radosevich, Professor, Experimental Pathology, Center for Molecular Biology of Oral Diseases, College of Dentistry, University of Illinois at Chicago, IL, USA

Gaetano Romano, Department of Biology, Centre for Biotechnology, Temple University Centre for Biotechnology, Philadelphia, PA, USA

Prof. Dr. Jean Rommelaere, Professor in Tumor Virology, Department of Infection, Inflammation and Cancer, German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg, Baden-Württemberg, Germany

M. Wasif Saif, Professor, Section of GI and Experimental Therapeutics, Tufts Cancer Center, Tufts University School of Medicine, USA

Rik Schots, Diensthoofd Hematologie, UZ Brussel, Belgium

Stefania Staibano, Professor in Pathology, Department of Advanced Biomedical Sciences, University Federico II of Naples, Naples, Italy

Nurdan Tacyildiz, Professor, Medical School, Department of Pediatric Oncology, Ankara University, Ankara, Turkey

Guang-Hong Tan, Dr, Hainan Provincial Key Laboratory of Tropical Medicine, Hainan Medical College, Xueyuan Lu, Haikou, Hainan, People's Republic of China

Dinesh Vyas, Associate Professor in the Department of Surgery, Texas Tech University, Odessa, Texas, USA

Ping Wang, Molecular Imaging Laboratory, Athinoula A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging Radiology Department, Massachusetts General Hospital, Charlestown, MA, USA