Orit Lavi, Ph.D.

Staff Scientist
Head, Integrative Cancer Dynamics Unit

The research program of the Integrative Cancer Dynamics Unit emphasizes an interdisciplinary theoretical approach to integrate the fields of mathematical oncology with data science, translating basic science into medicine using theories and methods from mathematics, physics, computer science and statistics. Our computational efforts will include the use/development of the theoretical frameworks necessary to answer a scientific question as part of the proposed program.

Areas of Expertise

1) mathematical oncology, 2) data science, 3) applied mathematics, 4) systems biology,
5) complex and adaptive systems, 6) cancer dynamics

Contact Info

Orit Lavi, Ph.D.
Center for Cancer Research
National Cancer Institute
Building 37, Room 2112
Bethesda, MD 20892-4258
Ph: 240-760-7212

Our main goal is to develop a validated computational program that addresses tumor dynamics (initiation, growth, progression, evolution, interactions with the environment, etc.), drug resistance and treatment response to better guide therapeutic intervention in the clinic.

For complicated diseases, such as cancer, many of our excessive efforts to treat patients end in non-responding or relapsing patients, due to the complex dynamic behavior of such quickly evolving and adapting tumors. An integrated computational approach should be applied, including using complex and adaptive dynamical systems theories to describe the nonlinear biological phenomena involved. We will primarily be challenged with the integration of complex systems on different levels: cellular, cell population and whole body, with different data types describing: imaging, genotype, phenotype, drug response, patient response, etc.

NIH Scientific Focus Areas:
Computational Biology, Systems Biology
View Dr. Lavi's PubMed Summary.

Selected Recent Publications

  1. Greene JM, Levy D, Herrada SP, Gottesman MM, Lavi O.
    Cancer Res. 76(10): 2882-90, 2016. [ Journal Article ]
  2. Gottesman MM, Lavi O, Hall MD, Gillet JP.
    Annu Rev Pharmacol Toxicol. 56: 85-102, 2016. [ Journal Article ]
  3. Lavi O.
    Cancer Res. 75(5): 808-12, 2015. [ Journal Article ]
  4. Greene JM, Levy D, Fung KL, Souza PS, Gottesman MM, Lavi O.
    J Theor Biol. 367: 262-77, 2015. [ Journal Article ]
  5. Lavi O, Skinner J, Gottesman MM.
    BMC Syst Biol. 8: 88, 2014. [ Journal Article ]

Dr. Orit Lavi received her B.Sc., M.Sc. and Ph.D. in applied mathematics at Bar Ilan University, Israel. She completed her postdoctoral training at the Laboratory of Cell Biology, CCR, NCI. Her recent work has been focused on theoretical and empirical problems related to the dynamic processes involved in the development of drug resistance in cancer. Dr. Orit is currently a Staff Scientist and heads the Integrative Cancer Dynamics Unit, focusing on developing a validated computational program that addresses tumor dynamics, drug resistance and treatment response to guide therapeutic intervention in the clinic.

Name Position
Jeremiah O. Emidih Predoctoral Fellow (Graduate Student)
Pierre-Emmanuel Jabin Ph.D. Special Volunteer
Vinod Rajapakse Ph.D. Postdoctoral Fellow (CRTA)
Max S. Springer Special Volunteer
Spencer A. Teolis Special Volunteer
Trevor J. Teolis Special Volunteer
Junxi Zhu Laboratory Technician (Contr.)

Frontiers in Mathematical Oncology: Young Investigators Conference (FMO17). With Pierre-Emmanuel Jabin and Doron Levy, UMD, CSCAMM and Department of Mathematics (April 2017).  This workshop focuses on the recent advances and new perspectives in applied analysis and computational mathematics, focusing on theoretical, computational and applied aspects of mathematical oncology. Sponsored and hosted by CSCAMM, UMD, College Park.

Mathematical Approaches to Breast Cancer Initiation and Dormancy (MABCID) workshop. With Karen Anderson, Arizona State University, Michael Graham Espey, NCI, Michael Gottesman, NCI, Doron Levy, UMD, Larry Nagahara, NCI, Dinah Singer, NCI, Daniel Gallahan, NCI, Norton Larry, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. This workshop was supported by the Division of Cancer Biology, NCI (Bethesda, MD, USA, 2015).