Session Chair Profile

Ph.D., Professor of Genetics at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Co-Founder and Consultant for GeneCentric Therapeutics Inc.

Dr Perou’s research crosses the disciplines of genomics, cancer research, bioinformatics and clinical care. His major contribution to the field has been in the characterization of the diversity of tumors, beginning first in breast cancer and more recently extending to lung cancer. His current work is focused on bringing genomic assays into the everyday cancer clinic to make improvements in personalized patient care. He has authored more than 300 peer reviewed articles. He earned his BA in Biology from Bates College, his PhD in Cell Biology from the University of Utah, and performed his postdoctoral work in the laboratory of David Botstein (then at Stanford University). He has been a faculty member at UNC since 2000. Additionally, he was the recipient of the Jill Rose Award for Distinguished Biomedical Research from the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, and the Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction from the Susan G. Komen.

Session Abstract – PMWC 2019 Silicon Valley

Session Synopsis: Immunotherapy is proving to be an effective therapeutic approach in a variety of advanced and metastatic cancers. However, despite the clinical success of the first wave of checkpoint inhibitors, only a subset of unselected patients exhibits durable responses. Furthermore, the field is witnessing notable failures in Phase III trials when these drugs are tested in unselected or sub-optimally selected patient populations. Finally, preliminary data indicate that the combinations of these agents, although promising in certain settings, are associated with increased toxicity and cost. Therefore, the development and implementation of novel clinical-grade biomarkers able to guide the selection of agents with complementary mechanisms of action targeting multiple mechanisms of resistance and immune escape are required.

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