Arun Rajan, M.D.

Arun  Rajan, M.D.
Senior Clinician

Dr. Rajan's clinical research studies focus on developing new therapies for patients with lung cancer and thymic malignancies.

Areas of Expertise

1) lung cancer, 2) thymic maligancies, 3) drug development

Contact Info

Arun Rajan, M.D.
Center for Cancer Research
National Cancer Institute
10-CRC, Room 4-5330
Bethesda, MD 20892
Ph: 240-760-6236

Selected Publications

  1. Rajan A, Heery CR, Thomas A, Mammen AL, Perry S, O'Sullivan Coyne G, Guha U, Berman A, Szabo E, Madan RA, Ballester LY, Pittaluga S, Donahue RN, Tsai YT, Lepone LM, Chin K, Ginty F, Sood A, Hewitt SM, Schlom J, Hassan R, Gulley JL.
    J Immunother Cancer. 7(1): 269, 2019. [ Journal Article ]
  2. Mammen AL, Rajan A, Pak K, Lehky T, Casciola-Rosen L, Donahue RN, Lepone LM, Zekeridou A, Pittock SJ, Hassan R, Schlom J, Gulley JL.
    Ann Rheum Dis. 78(1): 150-152, 2019.
  3. Kelly K, Manitz J, Patel MR, D'Angelo SP, Apolo AB, Rajan A, Kasturi V, Speit I, Bajars M, Warth J, Gulley JL.
    J Immunother Cancer. 8(2): e001427, 2020. [ Journal Article ]
  4. Warner BM, Baer AN, Lipson EJ, Allen C, Hinrichs C, Rajan A, Pelayo E, Beach M, Gulley JL, Madan RA, Feliciano J, Grisius M, Long L, Powers A, Kleiner DE, Cappelli L, Alevizos I.
    Oncologist. 24(9): 1259-1269, 2019. [ Journal Article ]
  5. Ferré EMN, Break TJ, Burbelo PD, Allgäuer M, Kleiner DE, Jin D, Xu Z, Folio LR, Mollura DJ, Swamydas M, Gu W, Hunsberger S, Lee CR, Bondici A, Hoffman KW, Lim JK, Dobbs K, Niemela JE, Fleisher TA, Hsu AP, Snow LN, Darnell DN, Ojaimi S, Cooper MA, Bozzola M, Kleiner GI, Martinez JC, Deterding RR, Kuhns DB, Heller T, Winer KK, Rajan A, Holland SM, Notarangelo LD, Fennelly KP, Olivier KN, Lionakis MS.
    Sci Transl Med. . 11(495): eaav5597, 2019. [ Journal Article ]

Dr. Rajan is a Staff Clinician in the Thoracic and GI Malignancies Branch at the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health. He is a medical oncologist by training and specializes in the treatment of lung and thymic cancers.

Dr. Rajan’s clinical research related to drug development for thymic cancers is well recognized. He has conducted numerous clinical trials evaluating various biological therapies including insulin-like growth factor receptor inhibitors (cixutumumab), histone deacetylase inhibitors (belinostat), and multikinase inhibitors (sunitinib). Dr. Rajan and his group have studied the expression of the cell surface glycoprotein, mesothelin in thymic carcinoma. Based on this work, an ongoing clinical trial is evaluating the mesothelin-directed, antibody-drug conjugate, anetumab in patients with advanced thymic carcinoma.

A major focus of Dr. Rajan’s research is the evaluation of immunotherapy for patients with advanced lung and thymic cancers. He is evaluating avelumab, a monoclonal antibody directed against programed death ligand-1 (PD-L1), in patients with advanced thymoma and thymic carcinoma. Dr. Rajan is also evaluating various forms of combination immunotherapy in patients with advanced lung cancer.

In recognition of his clinical research activities Dr. Rajan has received the Barbara Neibauer Award from the International Thymic Malignancies Interest Group (ITMIG) and a Group Award from the Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute for Preclinical and Clinical Studies of a Novel Immune Checkpoint Inhibitor Antibody.

Dr. Rajan has served as a member of various reviewing boards including the Oncologic Drug Advisory Committee (ODAC) of the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, and an independent data monitoring committee (iDMC) for IMPOWER 132, a phase III clinical trial evaluating chemotherapy with or without immunotherapy in patients with advanced lung cancer. He is also a member of ITMIG’s virtual tumor board, a forum to discuss complex cases of thymic cancers from all over the world.

Dr. Rajan serves in various capacities at his institution including Chair of the Scientific Review Committee, Thoracic and GI Malignancies Branch, Member of the NIH Institutional Review Board (General Medicine Panel #1), Member of the PDQ Adult Treatment Editorial Board, and Member of the PDQ Lung Cancer Working Group.

Dr. Rajan received his medical degree from the University of Delhi, India in 1998 and completed post-graduation in Internal Medicine from the same institution in 2002. He completed a residency in Internal Medicine and fellowship in Hematology and Medical Oncology from the State University of New York, Syracuse, in 2005 and 2008, respectively. Thereafter, he joined the National Cancer Institute as faculty in July 2008.

Name Position
Madison Ballman Postbaccalaureate Fellow (CRTA)
Cristina Mullenix DNP, FNP Nurse Practitioner (Contr.)
Susan Sansone Patient Care Coordinator (Contr.)
Shannon Swift BSN, RN Research Nurse