September 2021 EIPM Director’s Memo

September 2021 EIPM Director’s Memo

Dear Members of the Englander Institute,

I’m very proud of our work over the past month, including enviable news media coverage in publications like The New York Times, the awards and grants we’ve earned, and research published in high-profile journals like The New England Journal of Medicine.

We recently partnered with the Meyer Cancer Center to form a Metastasis Working Group to share information and advance research. Please email our colleague Marie Normile to join the group and be first to hear about events like the Metastasis Working Group Seminar on September 22, featuring presentations by EIPM’s Dr. Vivek Mittal and Dr. Elena Piskounova from the Meyer Cancer Center.

We have a number of interesting new career opportunities, including a FISH Research Specialist who will design and execute in situ validation assays (FISH, RNAish) in the context of Precision Oncology studies focused on defining novel molecular alterations in cancer. Thanks for sharing this job notice within your networks.

Please also visit our website and social media channels Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for daily updates on our work.

Thank you for your hard work and dedication to our mission.


Olivier Elemento, Ph.D.


News Coverage & Awards
Clinical Director Dr. Cora N. Sternberg was interviewed for the article, “Avelumab Maintenance Therapy Shows Favorable Results After Frontline Chemotherapy in Bladder Cancer,” in Targeted Oncology on August 21st.

Dr. Lewis Cantley was interviewed for the article, “A Discussion with Cancer Discovery’s Editors-in-Chief,” by the American Association for Cancer Research on August 5th to mark the 10th anniversary of the AACR Journal Cancer Discovery.

Dr. Peter Martin explained the importance of reviewing real-world databases and the results of a real-world study of treatment patterns and outcomes of patients with mantle cell lymphoma in the article “Real-World Treatment Patterns and Outcomes Differ from Clinical Trials in MCL,” in Targeted Oncology on August 7th. Dr. Martin was interviewed for the article “Who qualifies for a coronavirus booster shot? Why it’s still unclear. While people with immune-compromising conditions rejoice over the FDA decision, many questions remain unanswered,” in National Geographic magazine on August 13th. Dr. Martin was also interviewed for the article, “Dr. Martin on the Importance of Designing Clinical Trials for Real-World Utility in MCL,” in OncLive on August 16th.

I was honored to be interviewed for the article, “Breast Cancer Genetic Risk Modified by Corticosteroid Use,” in Precision Oncology News on August 6th regarding research in the American Journal of Human Genetics, by myself and our colleagues that found that using corticosteroids increased breast cancer risk among some women who were already at increased genetic risk for the disease.

Dr. Richard R. Furman was interviewed for the article, “Investigators Look to Enhance Response With Novel Triplet in CLL,” which appeared in OncLive on August 5th.

Dr. Shahin Rafii and Dean Dr. Augustine M.K. Choi were interviewed for the article, “Certain Lung Cells Seen to Reverse Emphysema in Preclinical Study,” which appeared in COPD News Today on August 2nd.

Congratulations to Dr. Lorenzo Galluzzi for being named the 1st Runner-Up in the Research Scientist category by the Immuno-Oncology Young Investigators’ Forum for his work evaluating immunological mechanisms of resistance to CDK4/6 inhibitors in breast cancer on August 1st.

Dr. Scott T. Tagawa was featured in a new article, “New Treatment Option for Advanced Urothelial Cancer Patients Shows Promise in a Phase 2 Clinical Trial,” on the WCM Newsroom website on August 2nd. Dr. Tagawa was interviewed for the article, “Tissue and Liquid Biopsies in Advanced Prostate Cancer,” which appeared in OncLive on August 16th. Dr. Tagawa was interviewed for the article, “Dr. Tagawa Takes Stock of Future of Sacituzumab Govitecan in Urothelial Carcinoma,” also in OncLive, on August 16th. Finally, Dr. Tagawa was interviewed for the article, “Dr. Tagawa on the Integration of PSMA-Targeted Agents in Prostate Cancer,” in OncLive on August 23rd.

Dr. John P. Leonard was a guest on the WCM CancerCast podcast discussing, “Biopsies, Ports, and Other Tools Interventional Radiologists Bring to Cancer Care,” on August 18th. Dr. Leonard was also interviewed for the article, “Blood Cancer Survivors Should Not Rely on COVID-19 Antibody Tests to Determine Immunity,” in CureToday on August 24th.

Congratulations to Dr. Melissa B. Davis on her promotion to Associate Professor, and to Dr. Lorenzo Galluzzi on being appointed Assistant Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology. Both promotions were announced on August 7th.

Dr. Bishoy Faltas was interviewed for the article, “How Genomics are Changing Urothelial Cancer Practice,” in Targeted Oncology on August 21st. Dr. Faltas also published several Expert Commentary’s in UroToday, including “Impact of Molecular Profiling Offered to Patients with Metastatic Bladder Cancer in Early-Phase Clinical Trials,” on August 23rd; “A Risk Stratification Model for Intermediate-Risk Non-Muscle-Invasive Bladder Cancer (NMIBC),” on August 26th; and “Neoadjuvant Immune Checkpoint Blockade in Upper Tract Urothelial Carcinoma,” on August 30th.

Alex Sigaras was interviewed for the article, “Meet you in the metaverse, maybe,” about the future of Facebook’s virtual reality service Horizon Workrooms that allows users to don a VR headset, create an avatar and sit among colleagues in computer-generated corporate settings. Alex shared how the mixed-reality headsets were piloted in I.C.U.s during the pandemic to bring additional expertise into the room without risking exposure to the virus. The New York Times, August 30th.

Congratulations to Dr. Jan Krumsiek on his new $2.5 million R01 Award to study “TargetAD: A systems multi-omics approach to drug repositioning in Alzheimer’s disease,” with Dr. Matthias Arnold at Helmholtz Zentrum Muenchen in Germany.


Dr. Bishoy Faltas and I presented at the 2021 Bladder Cancer Think Tank Meeting of the Bladder Cancer Advocacy Network, which took place on August 6th. The meeting included a panel discussion featuring myself and our former colleague Dr. Pegah Khosravi. Dr. Faltas also participated in a Bladder Cancer Advocacy Network’s North Carolina Triangle breakout session on the BCG shortage on August 6th.

Dr. Alex T. Ramsey, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the Washington University School of Medicine in Saint Louis, presented an EIPM Seminar Series lecture, “Advancing the development of genetically-informed behavioral health interventions,” on August 10th.

The EIPM Molecular Aging Institute’s Clinical Director Dr. Pinkal Desai presented, “Population studies in clonal hematopoiesis: Hematologic malignancies,” during the AACR Virtual Meeting on Clonal Hematopoiesis on August 18th.

Dr. Sana Raoof, a Radiation Oncology Resident at Memorial Sloan Kettering, presented an EIPM Special Seminar, “Looking beyond scopes, scans, and smears: the future of cancer screening,” on August 24th.

Dr. Melissa B. Davis was Keynote Speaker at the City of Hope Biomedical Research Graduate Student Symposium on August 27th.

Drs. Melissa B. Davis and Lisa Newman, together with WCM colleagues, presented the Fifth Annual International Symposium, “Improving Breast & Gynecological Cancers Management & Outcomes in Low and Middle Countries,” on August 29-31st.

“MicroRNA-1205 Regulation of FRYL in Prostate Cancer,” was co-authored by our Director of Informatics and Computational Biology Dr. Andrea Sboner and Princesca Dorsaint,” in Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology on July 27th.

“Functional comparison of exome capture-based methods for transcriptomic profiling of formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tumors,” was published by Dr. Bishoy Faltas with our colleagues Drs. Kyrillus S. Shohdy, Rohan Bareja, Michael Sigouros, David C. Wilkes, Princesca Dorsaint, Jyothi Manohar, Daniel Bockelman, Jenny Z. Xiang, Rob Kim, Kentaro Ohara, Kenneth Eng, Juan Miguel Mosquera, Andrea Sboner, Alicia Alonso & myself in NPJ Genomic Medicine on August 12th.

“A polygenic-score-based approach for identification of gene-drug interactions stratifying breast cancer risk,” was published by EIPM and WCM colleagues Drs. Andrew R. Marderstein, Scott Kulm, Rulla Tamimi, Andrew G. Clark & myself in AJHG on August 6th.

“Kidney Allograft Function Is a Confounder of Urine Metabolite Profiles in Kidney Allograft Recipients,” was published by EIPM Member Dr. Karsten Suhre and WCM & NY-P colleagues in MDPI Metabolites on August 11th.

“Serologic response to mRNA COVID-19 vaccination in lymphoma patients,” a correspondence by Drs. John P. Leonard, Richard Furman, and Peter Martin was published in the American Journal of Hematology on August 14th.

“Variant PNLDC1, Defective piRNA Processing, and Azoospermia,” was co-authored by Dr. Francesca Khani in the New England Journal of Medicine on August 19th.

“Autophagy in major human diseases,” was co-authored by Dr. Lorenzo Galluzzi and Dr. Laura Santambrogio in The Embo Journal on August 30th.

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