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Thoracic and Gastrointestinal Oncology Branch


The Thoracic and Gastrointestinal (GI) Oncology Branch (TGIB) was established in October 2013, following re-organization of clinical branches within the Center for Cancer Research at NCI. The impetus for formation of this Branch was to integrate and synergize multidisciplinary research and clinical activities pertaining to aerodigestive tract malignancies, and hasten the development of novel treatments for these neoplasms. The TGIB is a large branch that spans the spectrum of basic research, clinical trials and patient care.

Research Interests of TGIB Members

Dr. David Schrump is a thoracic surgeon who is internationally recognized for surgical expertise pertaining to lung and esophageal cancers, malignant pleural mesothelioma, chest wall sarcomas and pulmonary metastases. His research efforts are focused on the elucidation of epigenetic mechanisms of gene regulation in lung and esophageal cancers and malignant pleural mesothelioma, and the development of epigenetic regimens including chromatin remodeling agents and novel tumor vaccines for the treatment of these neoplasms. Dr. Raffit Hassan is a medical oncologist who heads the medical thoracic oncology program. His laboratory and clinical work is focused on targeting the tumor differentiation antigen mesothelin for the treatment of malignant mesothelioma and other solid tumors. Dr. Arun Rajan is a medical oncologist whose research interests focus on developing new therapies for thoracic malignancies, especially thymic cancers; he is currently evaluating the insulin-like growth factor-1 receptor (IGF-1R) inhibitor, cixutumumab and the multikinase inhibitor sunitinib in thymomas and thymic cancers. Dr. Anish Thomas is a medical oncologist who is focused on evaluation of novel targeted therapies for thoracic malignancies with an emphasis on mesothelioma. Dr. Udayan Guha is a medical oncologist who is utilizing proteo-genomic approaches to evaluate signaling pathways altered during pulmonary carcinogenesis, with a focus on mutant epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-driven lung adenocarcinoma.

Dr. Tim Greten is a medical oncologist whose research efforts focus on restoring anti-tumor immunity by elimination of immune suppressor functions of myeloid-derived suppressor cells, as well as activation of existing tumor-specific T cell responses in the tumor microenvironment of liver tumors and other GI cancers. Dr. Austin Duffy is a medical oncologist who serves as principal investigator or lead associate investigator on several early phase clinical trials in hepatic, pancreatic and colorectal cancers; his translational and laboratory interests relate to immune suppressor mechanisms in human cancer. Dr. Udo Rudloff is a surgical oncologist with expertise in hepatobiliary malignancies whose laboratory efforts focus on drug development for pancreas cancer using innovative in vitro and in vivo preclinical methods including high-throughput screening and RNAi techniques to characterize mechanisms of resistance to small molecule inhibitors targeting MAPK and PI3K-Akt pathways. Dr. Marybeth Hughes is a surgical oncologist, who along with Dr. Rudloff provides general surgical consultative services for all patients on NIH protocols. Dr. Hughes oversees the NCI Surgical Oncology Fellowship Program. Her research efforts focus on regional therapies for intra-abdominal malignancies including the use of percutaneous hepatic perfusion, as well as cytoreductive surgery and HIPEC (hyperthermic intraperitonel extracorporeal chemotherapy) for adrenocortical cancers and peritoneal mesothelioma.

This page was last updated on 7/7/2014.