January 29 – 31 2019

Boston, MA

 

 

2018 Speaker Faculty

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Graeme Smith
Chief Scientific Officer
Artios Pharma Ltd.

Graeme is currently CSO at Artios with responsibility for their drug discovery and target validation projects in the area of DDR.  Prior to Artios, Graeme held the position of Senior Director of Bioscience at AstraZeneca within the Oncology IMED division. In this role, Graeme led a group of bioscientists in target validation and the discovery and development of novel anti-cancer agents. Prior to joining AstraZeneca, he was Research Director at KuDOS Pharmaceuticals where he played a key role in the discovery and early development of Lynparza™ (olaparib), the first targeted DDR inhibitor to reach the market.

Day One

Wednesday January 31st, 2018

17.00 | Synthetic Lethality Roundtables

Day Two

Thursday February 1st, 2018

12.30 | Panel: Developing A Roadmap for Applying the Lessons Learned From PARP Inhibitors to the Next Generation of Synthetic Lethal Drugs

J. Carl Barrett
Vice President of Translational Science in Oncology
AstraZeneca

Dr. J. Carl Barrett is Vice President of Translational Science in Oncology at AstraZeneca. He is responsible for development and execution of  biomarker strategies and translational sciences efforts to support compound development from research through early and full development in oncology. From 2005-2011, he was Global Head of Oncology Biomarkers and Imaging at Novartis. Dr. Barrett was the founding Director of the NCI Center for Cancer Research (CCR), the NCI intramural center for translation medicine. He was also Scientific Director at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences where he focused on integrating new approaches to toxicogenomics, molecular toxicology, and the Environmental Genome Project. Dr. Barrett’s  research  focused on the discovery of the critical genetic and epigenetic changes in the cancer cell, in particular the discovery of genes involved in breast cancer (BRCA1). Trained as a chemist at the College of William and Mary, he received his Ph.D. degree in Biophysical Chemistry from Johns Hopkins University. He has published over 600 research articles. He is a member of the Johns Hopkins University Society of Scholars, the Ramazini Foundation, an honorary member of the Japanese Cancer Association, and a recipient of multiple NIH awards and Keynote lectures.

Day Two

Thursday February 1st, 2018

12.30 | Panel: Developing A Roadmap for Applying the Lessons Learned From PARP Inhibitors to the Next Generation of Synthetic Lethal Drugs

11.30 | Synthetic Lethality and DNA Damage and Response Inhibitors in the Clinic

Aviad Tsherniak
Associate Director, Cancer Data Science
Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard

Aviad Tsherniak leads the Cancer Data Science group at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. He is interested in developing computational methods enabling the identification of therapeutically relevant cancer vulnerabilities that would lead to new drug development efforts and a greater understanding of the biological mechanisms driving cancer. Tsherniak works closely with Cancer Program director and Broad chief scientific officer Todd Golub and institute member William Hahn on the scientific planning and execution of the Cancer Dependency Map, an effort to exhaustively characterize cancer vulnerabilities and the molecular biomarkers defining them across many cancer types. In this role, he directs the efforts to integrate ‘omics data with functional screening datasets, such as genome-scale CRISPR-Cas9 knockout data generated as part of Project Achilles and multiplexed small-molecule screens conducted using the PRISM platform.

Day One

Wednesday January 31st, 2018

12.45 | Prioritizing Targets for Therapeutic Development by Defining a Cancer Dependency Map

Alexandra Grassian
Senior Scientist
Epizyme

Day One

Wednesday January 31st, 2018

10.00 | Panel: Comparison of Approaches and Best Practices for Synthetic Lethal Screening

09.30 | Identifying Differential Dependencies on Epigenetic Pathways and Synthetic Lethal Relationships with CRISPR Pooled Screening of Hundreds of Cancer Cell Lines

Cyril Benes
Director, Center for Molecular Therapeutics
Mass General Center for Cancer Research

The Benes laboratory, known as The Center for Molecular Therapeutics, is engaged in the design and application of personalized therapies for cancer. Targeted cancer treatments have emerged from research studies showing that the biology of cancer cells differs from that of healthy cells, and that each person’s cancer has a unique genetic signature. Our goal is to pinpoint the cancer cells’ biological weak points and then to attack those weak points with smart drugs that are specifically designed for such an attack. We use a very large collection of previously established tumor cell lines derived from many different cancers as well as newly established lines from patients treated at MGH. We are focused on developing molecular diagnostics that will reveal the best treatment course for each patient and on discovering how gene mutations in cancer can be exploited to develop new treatments.

Day Two

Thursday February 1st, 2018

10.15 | Panel: Comparison of Current Modeling Techniques for Synthetic Lethality

09.15 | Modeling Cancer Drug Response in Vitro: Pharmacogenomics and Patient Derived Models

Carla Grandori MD PhD
CEO
SEngine Precision Medicine

Dr. Grandori is a biotech entrepreneur and cancer molecular biologist with experience in academia and pharma. She received her MD from the University of Rome and a PhD from The Rockefeller University. Dr. Grandori completed her post-doctoral training at MIT and at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (FHCRC). From 2009 to 2014, Dr. Grandori was the principal investigator of a laboratory at FHCRC, where she pioneered discovery and development of therapeutic targets to tackle the undruggable MYC oncogene. In 2009, Dr. Grandori was recruited to establish the Quellos High Throughput Screening Core at the University of Washington, for which she received a presidential entrepreneurial award. In 2011, Dr. Grandori founded, and continues to direct, Cure First, a not-for-profit research organization.  Since 2015, Dr. Grandori has served as CEO/CSO of SEngine Precision Medicine.

Day One

Wednesday January 31st, 2018

11.45 | Patient Organoids as a Platform for Drug Discovery: Development of Novel Synthetic Lethality Targets

Simone Botti
CEO
Metabomed Ltd.

Dr. Botti has been Metabomed’s CEO since July 2016. Simone co-founded Metabomed while he was Head of the Israel Bioincubator Fund at Merck Ventures, which he joined in 2011. During his tenure at Merck Ventures Dr. Botti set up the Israel Bioincubator Fund, and established a number of early stage companies. Previously, he was Vice President, Business Development at RAD Biomed Accelerator, one of Israel’s leading Life science incubators. Prior to that, he was Senior Director of Business Development at Cogenics. He also served as a Board Member of IATI, the Israel Advanced Technology Industries association. Dr. Botti holds a PhD in Chemistry from the Weizmann Institute of Science, where he received the “Dov Elad” prize in Structural Biology and was NIH–ADDP Fellow at Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago.

Day One

Wednesday January 31st, 2018

12.15 | Exploiting Synthetic Lethality and Induced Essentiality in the Context of Cancer Metabolism with a Combined Computational and Metabolomic Approach

René Bernards
Professor of molecular carcinogenesis
Netherlands Cancer Institute

René Bernards is a professor of molecular carcinogenesis at the Netherlands Cancer Institute. His laboratory uses functional genomic approaches to find vulnerabilities of cancers that can be exploited therapeutically. Using the concept of synthetic lethality, his laboratory searches for combinations of drugs that are lethal for cancer cells and for vulnerabilities of cancer cells of a defined genotype. Amongst his honors are the Pezcoller Foundation-FECS Recognition for Contribution to Oncology, the Ernst W. Bertner Award for Cancer Research from the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, the ESMO Lifetime Achievement Award in Translational Research in Breast Cancer. He is also a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Sciences.

Day One

Wednesday January 31st, 2018

15.45 | Panel: Mapping the Landscape of Future Combinations for Synthetic Lethal Drugs

15.15 | Synthetic Lethality as a Tool to Resuscitate Abandoned Drugs That Experienced Poor Single Agent Activity

Bill Forrester
Principal Investigator
Novartis

Bill Forrester received his PhD in Mark Groudine’s lab at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center where he described the beta-globin locus control region. His post-doc in Rudi Grosschedl’s lab at UCSF focused on local and long range control of chromatin accessibility mediated by the IgH intronic enhancer. Currently Bill is at Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research and is working on synthetic lethal gene combinations.

Dr. Mark Kowalski
Chief Medical Officer
Sierra Oncology

Dr. Mark Kowalski has extensive experience in Phase I through Phase IV drug development and clinical trial execution in a wide variety of therapeutic areas, including oncology. Prior to joining Sierra, Dr. Kowalski was most recently the Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President at Arbutus Biopharma, a biotechnology company devoted to discovering and developing a cure for chronic Hepatitis B. Previously, he held the same position at Tekmira, a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing therapeutics based on RNA interference utilizing lipid nanoparticle delivery technology in oncology, infectious disease, metabolic and other clinical indications. Prior to joining Tekmira, Dr. Kowalski worked in the oncology and inflammation therapeutic area at Gilead Sciences, Inc. following Gilead’s $510-million acquisition of YM BioSciences Inc., at which Dr. Kowalski had been CMO and Vice President of Regulatory Affairs. Dr. Kowalski’s experience also encompasses being the CMO and Vice President of Medical/Regulatory Affairs at Viventia Biotechnologies Inc. and the Senior Director of Medical Affairs at AAIPharma Inc. Dr. Kowalski holds a B.A. from Rutgers University and an M.D. and Ph.D. from the University of Kansas School of Medicine. He completed his postgraduate training in internal medicine and infectious diseases at Duke University and Harvard Medical School and is Board certified in both.

Day Two

Thursday February 1st, 2018

14.15 | Leveraging Synthetic Lethality to Enhance Clinical Trials with SRA737, a Next-generation Chk1 Inhibitor

Jeffrey H. Hanke
Executive Vice President, Research and Development
and Chief Scientific Officer, TESARO

Jeffrey H. Hanke, Ph.D., has served as TESARO’s Executive Vice President, Research and Development, and Chief Scientific Officer since June 2015. His responsibilities include preclinical development, translational research, strategic drug discovery collaborations, pharmaceutical development, and program management. Prior to joining TESARO, Dr. Hanke was Senior Vice President, Research, and Global Head of Biotherapeutics at Boehringer Ingelheim, Inc., where he led the company’s U.S. research activities and the global biotherapeutics group. He previously served as Vice President of Cancer Research at AstraZeneca, and in several roles of increasing responsibility within the R&D organization at Pfizer. Dr. Hanke has more than twenty-five years of experience in biopharmaceutical research and development. Dr. Hanke received his Ph.D. in immunology and microbiology from Baylor College of Medicine and completed his post-doctoral training at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School.

Day One

Wednesday January 31st, 2018

18.00 | Chairman’s Closing Remarks

15.45 | Panel: Mapping the Landscape of Future Combinations for Synthetic Lethal Drugs

14.45 | PARP Inhibition Meets Tumor Immune Modulation: Rationale and Patient Positioning Considerations

08.50 | Chairman’s Opening Remarks

Day Two

Thursday February 1st, 2018

15.15 | Chairman’s Closing Remarks

12.30 | Panel: Developing A Roadmap for Applying the Lessons Learned From PARP Inhibitors to the Next Generation of Synthetic Lethal Drugs

09.00 | Chairman’s Opening Remarks & Day 1 Summary

Kevin Coleman
Executive Director, Translational Research & Development
Experimental Biology, TESARO

Kevin Coleman leads an experimental pharmacology group at TESARO that is focused on mechanism-of-action and efficacy studies designed to support the advancement of TESARO’s small molecule and biologics cancer pipeline. Prior to TESARO, Kevin held a series of drug discovery and management positions with Arvinas, Merck, Pfizer, and BMS. He earned his BS in Biology at University of Connecticut, his Ph.D. in Cellular and Molecular Biology at the University of Michigan, and conducted his postdoctoral studies in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics at the University of California, San Francisco

Pre-Conference Morning Workshop

Tuesday January 30 2018

09.00 |
Optimizing Synthetic Lethal Screens: CRISPR/Cas9 Identification of SL Interactions for Cancer Drug Discovery

Day One

Wednesday January 31st, 2018

10.00 | Panel: Comparison of Approaches and Best Practices for Synthetic Lethal Screening

Angelique Whitehurst
Associate Professor
UT Southwestern Medical Center

Angelique Whitehurst received her B.A. and B.S in Chemistry and Biochemistry respectively from Virginia Tech in 1997.  Angelique attended UT-Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, TX for graduate work where she studied MAP Kinase signaling with Melanie Cobb.  As a post-doctoral fellow at UT-Southwestern with Michael White, she developed methods for synthetic lethality screening using loss of function platforms. In her independent work, Angelique’s laboratory is focused on gaining a mechanistic understanding of the core molecular components that specify tumorigenic phenotypes at the cancer cell autonomous level. The laboratory has used a series of loss of function synthetic lethal screening approaches to uncover critical regulators of survival processes in tumorigenesis.

Day Two

Thursday February 1st, 2018

14.45 | Mechanisms of Tumor-activated Gametogenic Proteins in Tumor Cell Behaviors

Lars Zender
Professor and Chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine VIII and Scientific
Director of the Comprehensive Cancer Center, Tübingen-Stuttgart

Lars Zender, M.D., is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine VIII (Clinical Tumor Biology and Phase I Clinic) and Scientific Director of the Comprehensive Cancer Center Tübingen-Stuttgart (Germany). His laboratory is taking advantage of shRNA- or Crispr/Cas based functional genetic screens to identify novel therapeutic targets in therapy resistant solid tumors. He pioneered the development of non-germline genetically engineered cancer mouse models, which allow to conduct functional genetic screens for new therapeutic targets directly in vivo. He is co-founder and executive board member of the Tübingen Center for Academic Drug Discovery & Development (TüCAD2), which recently brought a new drug against liver cancer first into man. Another key aspect in the scientific work of Lars Zender is his work on cellular senescence. In particular the Zender laboratory is studying the senescence associated secretory phenotype and how senescent tumor cells and pre-cancerous cells are recognized and cleared by the immune system. Current research activities are aiming at a functional identification of vulnerabilities in senescent cancer cells (therapy induced senescence) as a prerequisite for the development of novel senolytic drugs.

Day Two

Thursday February 1st, 2018

10.15 | Panel: Comparison of Current Modeling Techniques for Synthetic Lethality

09.45 | Non-germline Genetically Engineered Cancer Mouse Models and in Vivo Functional Genetic Screening

Eytan Ruppin
Professor of Computer Science, Director of the Center of Bioinformatics and
Computational Biology (CBCB), University of Maryland

Eytan Ruppin (MD, PhD) is the director of the center for bioinformatics at the University of Maryland. His research is focused on collaborating with numerous experimental cancer labs, developing and utilizing computational approaches to gain a systems view and predict and test novel drug targets and biomarkers to treat cancer more effectively. My lab has identified the first synthetic lethal drug targets in renal cancer and the first genome-wide tumor-derived synthetic lethal networks in cancer. Recently, we developed a new data mining pipeline for identifying molecular pathways of resistance to both targeted and immune therapy in cancer.

Pre-Conference Afternoon Workshop

Tuesday January 30 2018

13.00 |
Advancing Bioinformatics in Synthetic Lethality: Identifying and Harnessing Synthetic Lethal and Synthetic Rescue Interactions to Treat Cancer

Day One

Wednesday January 31st, 2018

15.45 | Panel: Mapping the Landscape of Future Combinations for Synthetic Lethal Drugs

13.15 | Harnessing Synthetic Lethality to Predict Patient Response and Synergistic Combinations in Cancer

Stephane Angers
Professor, Faculty of Pharmacy & Dept of Biochemistry
University of Toronto

Dr. Angers (1997- B.Sc Biochemistry, McGill University, Canada; 2002- Ph.D, Biochemistry, Université de Montréal, Canada) is a Professor at the Faculty of Pharmacy and in the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Toronto. He joined the University of Toronto in October 2006 after a Post-Doctoral Fellowship in the Howard Hughes Medical Institute laboratory of Dr. Randall T. Moon at the University of Washington in Seattle (2002-2006). His research interests include the mechanisms of signal transduction by cell surface receptors.  Current projects in his laboratory aim at better understanding intracellular signalling initiated by the Wnt and Hedgehog families of secreted proteins during normal tissue homeostasis and in cancers. Dr. Angers is equally interested in identifying genetic vulnerabilities in high fatality cancers that could be leveraged into therapies. For this, the Angers lab pioneered the use of proteomic and functional genomic approaches to functionally uncover and characterize signalling networks important for cancer cells. During his young career Dr. Angers has published several high impact articles in journals such as Nature, Science, Nature Cell Biology and Nature Medicine.

Day One

Wednesday January 31st, 2018

10.00 | Panel: Comparison of Approaches and Best Practices for Synthetic Lethal Screening

09.00 | Leveraging Genome-wide CRISPR Screens and Synthetic Lethal Interactions for Novel Cancer Therapeutics

Daniel Durocher
Senior Investigator
Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute, Mount Sinai Hospital

Daniel Durocher is a Senior Investigator at the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute, Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto where he acts as Director of the Biomedical Program. He is also a Full Professor in the Department of Molecular Genetics at the University of Toronto and one of the Founders of Repare Therapeutics. Dr. Durocher’s overarching interest lies in understanding how cells maintain genome integrity, with an emphasis on the detection, signaling and repair of DNA double-strand breaks.

Dr. Durocher is widely recognized for his use of functional genomics approaches to study the DNA damage response, and those efforts established ubiquitin as a key organizing molecule in DNA damage repair. Among the awards received by Dr. Durocher in recent years, particularly notable is the 2015 Paul Marks Prize for cancer research awarded by Memorial Sloan Kettering. In 2010, he was also named one of Canada’s Top 40 under 40, a prize that highlights exceptional contributions to Canadian society by individuals under 40 years of age in the arts, science and business spheres.

Dr. Durocher holds a B.Sc. from Université de Montréal, a Ph.D. from McGill University and he did his postdoctoral training at the University of Cambridge, UK.

Day Two

Thursday February 1st, 2018

12.30 | Panel: Developing A Roadmap for Applying the Lessons Learned From PARP Inhibitors to the Next Generation of Synthetic Lethal Drugs

12.00 | Charting the Genetic Architecture of the Response to DNA Damage