Photo of Dr. Simpson

R. Mark Simpson, D.V.M., Ph.D.

  • Center for Cancer Research
  • National Cancer Institute


Dr. Simpson is an investigative pathologist whose work focuses on disease biomarker discovery, validation of human disease models, computer-assisted diagnostics, tissue image analysis and cytometry for mechanistic insight. The laboratory also investigates development of a combined precision medicine targeted therapy approach for mucosal melanoma, a rare and highly aggressive subtype of melanoma.  In addition, Dr. Simpson directs the NIH Comparative Biomedical Scientist Training Program (CBSTP), a nationally recognized interdisciplinary University-NIH Graduate Partnership Program employing a novel curriculum to provide training in comparative biomedical science, cross training veterinarian clinician scientists in human disease research leading to the Ph.D. degree.

Areas of Expertise

Investigative Pathology
Human Disease Models
Diagnostic Medicine
Computer-Assisted Diagnosis
Comparative Biomedical Science Graduate Education


Selected Recent Publications

Efficacy tolerability and pharmacokinetics of combined targeted MEK and dual mTORC1/2 inhibition in a preclinical model of mucosal melanoma

Wei B-R, Hoover S.B., Peer C.J., Dwyer J.E., Adissu H.A., Shankarappa P., Yang, H., Lee M., Peat T.J., Figg W.D., Simpson, R.M.
Molecular Cancer Therapeutics. 19:11: 2020.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]

The Outcome of TGFβ Antagonism in Metastatic Breast Cancer Models In Vivo Reflects a Complex Balance between Tumor-Suppressive and Proprogression Activities of TGFβ

Yang Y, Yang HH, Tang B, Wu AML, Flanders KC, Moshkovich N, Weinberg DS, Welsh MA, Weng J, Ochoa HJ, Hu TY, Herrmann MA, Chen J, Edmondson EF, Simpson RM, Liu F, Liu H, Lee MP, Wakefield LM.
Clin Cancer Res. 26(3): 643-56, 2020. [ Journal Article ]

Naturally occurring canine melanoma as a predictive comparative oncology model for human mucosal and other triple wild-type melanomas.

Hernandez B, HA Adissu, BR Wei, HT Michael, G Merlino, RM Simpson.
International Journal Molecular Science. 19(2). Pii. E394: E394, 2018.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]

Automated computational detection, quantitation, and mapping of mitosis in whole slide images for clinically actionable surgical pathology decision support

Puri M, SB Hoover, SM Hewitt, BR Wei, HA Adissu, CH Halsey, J Beck, C Bradley, SD Cramer, AC Durham, DG Esplin, C Frank, LT Lyle, LD McGill, MD Sanchez, PA Schaffer, RP Traslavina, E Buza, HH Yang, MP Lee, JE Dwyer, RM Simpson.
Journal of Pathology Informatics. 10:4: 2019.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]

Agreement in Histological Assessment of Mitotic Activity Between Microscopy and Digital Whole Slide Images Informs Conversion for Clinical Diagnosis

Wei BR, Halsey CH, Hoover SB, Puri M, Yang HH, Gallas BD, Lee MP, Chen W, Durham AC, Dwyer JE, Sánchez MD, Traslavina RP, Frank C, Bradley C, McGill LD, Esplin DG, Schaffer PA, Cramer SD, Lyle LT, Beck J, Buza E, Gong Q, Hewitt SM, Simpson RM
Academic Pathology. 6: 2019.
Full-Text Article
[ Journal Article ]

Job Vacancies

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Jennifer Dwyer, M.S.
Staff Scientist (Contr)
Bih-Rong Wei, Ph.D.
Administrative Assistant II/Program Analyst
Candice England
Program Specialist (Contr)
John Hickerson
CBSTP fellow
Helena Vogel, D.V.M
CBSTP Fellow
Adrianne Glaser, D.V.M.
Staff Pathologist (Contr)
Jennifer Steinberg, D.V.M.
Special Volunteer
Shelley Hoover, B.S.


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