March 14-16, 2017 | Boston, MA


2017 Speakers


Francis Lee
Director, Tumor Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics
Bristol-Myers Squibb

Dr. Francis Lee, Ph.D. is a Senior Research Fellow at the Oncology Drug Discovery Division, Bristol-Myers Squibb R&D, Princeton, NJ.   Dr. Lee was a co-chair of the preclinical drug development team that was responsible for the discovery of the anti-tubulin agent ixabepilone (IXEMPRAÒ), a novel epothilone analog, which was approved by the FDA for the treatment of metastatic or locally advanced breast cancer in patients after failure of prior anthracyclines and taxanes. Dr. Lee also co-led the preclinical team that discovered the SRC/ABL multi-oncogenic kinase inhibitor BMS-354825 (dasatinib, SPRYCELÒ), which was approved by the FDA for the treatment of adults with chronic, accelerated, or blast phase chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) with resistance or intolerance to prior therapy including imatinib, and for the treatment of adults with Philadelphia chromosome‑positive (Ph+) acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and lymphoid blast chronic myeloid leukemia with resistance or intolerance to prior therapy. Dr. Lee’s current research interests include the use of patient-derived tumor xenografts with defined genetic profiles in the understanding of the molecular and cellular basis of sensitivity/resistance to cancer therapeutics, including immunotherpay.

Jannie Borst
Head of Division, Immunology
Netherlands Cancer Institute

Jannie Borst obtained an MSc degree in biology with chemistry and a PhD degree in molecular immunology from Leiden University. She did her PhD work at Harvard Medical School in Boston with biochemist dr Cox Terhorst and trained in immunology with drs Jan de Vries and Hergen Spits from 1980 to 1985. She started her independent career as Principal Investigator (PI) at The Netherlands Cancer Institute ( in 1987, obtained tenure in 1992 and became head of the Division of Immunology in 2002. From 1999 onwards, she is in addition professor in Experimental Oncology at the University of Amsterdam. Jannie Borst has received the Van Loghem career award of the Dutch Society for Immunology in 2009 and was elected EMBO member in 2012. As a PI, she maintains a research group of 10-12 people by means of competitive grants and has trained 17 PhD students. She has authored 165 peer-reviewed papers (H-index 67, >13.000 citations). Major contributions have been to the understanding of antigen recognition-, costimulatory receptor- and death receptor functions on lymphocytes. She currently studies the molecular basis of T-cell and dendritic cell function, a.o. by transcriptomics and proteomics. This work aims to improve cancer immunotherapy. To this end, collaborations with biotech, pharma and clinicians are in place.

Afternoon Workshops

Tuesday March 14

13.00 | Workshop D: Novel Checkpoint Pathways And Strategies For Combined Modality Treatment

Day One

Wednesday March 15

08.15 | Chair’s Opening Remarks

16.30 | The Functional Programs And Molecular Mechanisms That Optimize Cytotoxic T Cells (CTLs) For Their Anti-Tumor Efficacy

Andrew Zloza
Section Chief of Surgical Oncology Research,
Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey

Day One

Wednesday March 15

17.00 | Enhancing The Translatability Of Preclinical Models To Boost Translation Into The Clinic

Sarah McWhirter
Director, STING Program
Aduro BioTech

Sarah McWhirter, Ph.D., serves as Director and Project Lead for Aduro’s STING Program.  Dr. McWhirter has more than 15 years of combined experience in biochemistry, immunology and oncology in both academic and industrial settings. She earned her Ph.D. in Molecular and Cell Biology at University of California, Berkeley in the laboratory of Dr. Tom Alber.  She performed postdoctoral work at Harvard University in the laboratory of Dr. Tom Maniatis studying novel host innate immune signaling pathways.  Over the last few years she has focused her efforts on developing novel therapeutics to treat cancer and currently oversees both the research and early clinical development efforts for Aduro Biotech’s STING program.  

Day Two

Thursday March 16

15.30 | Activation Of STING With Synthetic Cyclic Dinucleotides Synergizes With Checkpoint Inhibition To Induce Anti-Tumor Immunity

Zhen Su
VP, Head of Global Medical Affairs, Oncology
EMD Serono

Dr. Zhen Su, Vice President and Head of Global Medical Affairs - Oncology at EMD Serono leads medical strategy and the team for the franchise. A physician executive with more than 15 years of experience, Dr. Su has strong clinical expertise in oncology, immuno-oncology and urology. He has held positions in academic and pharmaceutical medicine, including general management, clinical development, medical affairs and business development. Prior to EMD Serono, Dr. Su served as Associate Vice President and Global Head of Jevtana® (cabazitaxel) at Sanofi. Before joining industry, Dr. Su held several academic positions, including Assistant Professor of Surgery at Duke University, where he also received his post-doc fellowship in Immuno-Oncology. He has deep ties to the oncology community, having worked with leading oncologists at organizations globally. Dr. Su earned his MD degree from the Technical University of Dresden, Germany and completed his MBA training at the University of Toronto, Canada.

Day Two

Thursday March 16

09.00 | The Science And Art Of Immuno-Oncology: Integrating IO Treatment Solutions Into Real-World Oncology Practice

Xiaosong Zhang
Assistant Medical Director

Day One

Wednesday March 15

09.00 | Case Study: Comprehensive Insights Into The Atezolizumab Combination Strategy Across Various Tumor Types

Jon Wigginton
CMO & SVP, Clinical Development,

Jon Wigginton, MD currently serves as Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President of Clinical Development at MacroGenics, Inc., a Maryland  biotechnology company focused on immunotherapeutic approaches for cancer and autoimmune disease.  Dr. Wigginton previously served as Therapeutic Area Head of Immuno-Oncology, Early Clinical Research at Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS), where he led the early clinical development of the BMS Immuno-Oncology portfolio including anti-PD-1, anti-PD-L1 and various immunotherapy combinations including anti-CTLA-4/anti-PD-1 among others. He also served in a governance leadership role for discovery efforts in immuno-oncology at BMS.  Prior to joining BMS, Dr. Wigginton served as Director of Clinical Oncology at Merck Research Laboratories, where he led early- and late-stage clinical development teams for small molecules and biologics. During his academic career, Dr. Wigginton held several positions at the National Cancer Institute, Center for Cancer Research (NCI-CCR), including Head of Investigational Biologics Section, Pediatric Oncology Branch, where he led an integrated basic science and early clinical research effort focused on combination immunotherapy. Dr. Wigginton also served previously as President of the International Society for the Biological Therapy of Cancer (now the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer).  He received his B.S. in Biology and his M.D. from the University of Michigan.

Kuldeep Neote
Senior Director, New Ventures
J&J Innovation Center

Kuldeep Neote, Ph.D., is Senior Director at J&J Innovation Center-Boston, and is responsible for New Venture and Scouting opportunities in the areas of Oncology and Immunology in the East Coast. Dr. Neote is trained as a Molecule Biologist with an extensive background in drug discovery. He has been focused in the area of Immunology, Inflammation and Oncology and has a passion for implementing cutting edge scientific discoveries into practical drug discovery programs. Throughout his career, he has looked at creative scientific and business development collaborative and partnering opportunities that have resulted in tangible clinical translation of new scientific discoveries working in conjunction with academic and biotech companies. Formerly, Dr. Neote was Research Advisor/Director in Global External R&D at Eli Lilly in Indianapolis, IN.    Prior to Eli Lilly, he was a Discovery Scientist in Pfizer Inc. in Groton, CT.  Dr. Neote initiated the Chemokine Receptor Drug Discovery platform that lead to several clinical candidates, and also discovered novel chemokines.  Earlier in his career, Dr. Neote cloned one of the first chemokine receptors during his post-doctoral studies in Genentech. Dr. Neote earned her BSc. in Microbial and Cellular Biology at the University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada, and a Ph.D. in Human and Molecule Genetics at the University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada, where he was a major contributor in the understanding of the molecular basis of lysosomal storage diseases, in particular Tay Sachs and Sandhoff’s disease.

Morning Workshops

Tuesday March 14

09.00 | Workshop C: Deal-Making In A Time Of Unprecedented Innovation

Michael Postow
Medical Oncologist, Melanoma & Immunotherapeutics Service

Dr. Michael Postow is a physician on faculty at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in the Melanoma and Immunotherapeutics Oncology Service.  He completed medical school at New York University School of Medicine and internal medicine residency training at Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School.  He then returned to New York City for his fellowship in medical oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center where he conducted clinical research with Dr. Jedd Wolchok in melanoma and immunotherapy.  He joined the faculty at Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in 2013 and has been leading clinical trials involving immunotherapeutic agents, most notably a phase II study of the combination of nivolumab and ipilimumab in melanoma and investigations into the combination of radiotherapy and immunotherapy.  He also holds an appointment in the phase I group where he studies new immunotherapy agents and combinations for patients with multiple malignancies.  His translational efforts involve studying immunologic biomarkers associated with response to immune checkpoint inhibition.  He is the Editor-In-Chief for the journal, Clinical Skin Cancer, and he also serves on the editorial board of the Journal for the Immunotherapy of Cancer.  In his spare time, he enjoys playing guitar and piano, skiing, and sailing.

Carl Morrison
President, CSO, and Founder

Angie Park
Senior Director, Immunotherapy & Stem Cell Biology

I received my Ph. D in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Indiana University. I studied structure-function relationship of ATP-dependent protein phosphatase where synergistic phosphorylation of regulatory subunit activates the phosphatase. During post-doc years in Michael Clarke lab in University of Michigan, I discovered that Bmi-1 is highly expressed in hematopoietic stem cells and neuronal stem cells and required for long-term hematopoietic stem cell self-renewal. I also discovered that multi-potent progenitor population can be target of malignant transformation by deleting p16/p19/p53 genes. When I joined OncoMed in 2005, I was in charge of establishing human patient derived xenograft (PDX) models from multiple tumor types and characterize cancer stem cells from pancreas, lung and breast tumours via tumorigenicity and gene expression to generate stem cell gene signatures. PDX models have been the main platform for screening out antibody therapeutics targeting cancer stem cell pathways, such as Wnt and Notch. I also developed various murine tumor models using GEMM carrying activating Kras mutation and p53 deletion. Since then I have been leading preclinical immuno-oncology team to evaluating OncoMed generated immuno-oncology therapeutic agents. Now we have multiple targets in development and will be ready for clinical trial in near future.  

Kris Sachsenmeier
Associate Director, Translational Science

Kris studied at the University of Wisconsin, Madison for both undergraduate and graduate degrees in Biochemistry, Immunology and Toxicology. Next, he studied tumor viruses during a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh in the lab of Dr. Jim Pipas.  Kris then worked in two startup-biotechnology companies: Automated Cell in Pittsburgh and Arius in Toronto.  In both companies, Kris led teams doing anti-cancer antibody discovery. After joining Medimmune, Kris led the first Oncology Research bi-specific antibody project as well as various “Function First” target/lead discovery projects. One of these projects led to discovery of a functionally active antibody targeting CD73, an ectoenzyme which generates adenosine within the tumor microenvironment.  Kris led the project team from target discovery, through validation, lead isolation and discovery through to filing of an IND and support of the clinical team for what became the first anti-CD73 antibody to enter human clinical trials: MEDI9447.  Recently Kris joined the Translational Sciences team at Astrazeneca.  

David Schaer
Principal Research Scientist, Cancer Immunobiology
Eli Lilly

Karsten Sauer
Director, Cancer Immunology

Frédéric Triebel

Frédéric Triebel, MD. Ph.D., is the scientific founder of Immutep S.A. (2001). Before starting Immutep, he was Professor in Immunology at Paris University. While working at Institut Gustave Roussy (IGR), a large cancer centre in Paris, he discovered the LAG-3 gene in 1990 and continued working on this research program since then, identifying the functions and medical usefulness of this molecule. He headed a research group at IGR while being also involved in the biological follow-up of cancer patients treated in Phase I/II immunotherapy trials. He was Director of an INSERM Unit from 1991 to 1996. First trained as a clinical haematologist, Dr. Triebel holds a Ph.D. in immunology (Paris University) and successfully developed several research programs in immunogenetics, leading to 145 publications and 18 patents. Immutep is now part of Prima Biomed Ltd and Dr. Triebel serves as the CSO/CMO of the company.

Kurt Schalper
Assistant Professor of Pathology & Medicine
Yale School of Medicine

I trained as cell biologist and surgical pathologist. My major interest includes molecular diagnostics and measurement of tissue biomarkers for anti-cancer immunotherapy. Currently, I am an Assistant Professor of Pathology at Yale University and director of the Translational Immuno-oncology Laboratory at the Yale Cancer Center. This lab is devoted to produce and support high quality translational research in immuno-oncology through standardized analyses of biomarkers and cross-integration with other Yale resources. We aim to open new opportunities for biomarker discovery, identification of targets and patient selection for novel immunostimulatory therapies.

Morning Workshops

Tuesday March 14

09.00 | Workshop A: Determinants Of Sensitivity And Resistance To Immune Checkpoint Blockers In Cancer

Beth Trehu
Jounce Therapeutics

Elizabeth G. Trehu, M.D (Beth), is Chief Medical Officer of Jounce Therapeutics, a clinical stage immuno-oncology company dedicated to transforming the treatment of cancer. Recent positions include Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of Promedior, Inc., and Vice President of Product Development and Medical Affairs at Infinity Pharmaceuticals. Prior to Infinity, Dr. Trehu served as Vice President of Oncology Global Medical Affairs and ultimately held the position of Vice President and General Manager, Hematology.  She entered the biotech industry at Millennium Pharmaceuticals, where she held positions of increasing responsibility in medical affairs. Dr. Trehu's career prior to industry included laboratory and clinical research in immuno-oncology as an assistant professor at Tufts University School of Medicine. Dr. Trehu was recognized as a ‘2012 Woman to Watch’ by Mass High Tech. She holds an M.D. from New York University School of Medicine and an A.B. cum laude from Princeton University.

David Tuck

Dr. David Tuck is Chief Medical Officer, Senior Vice President of Clinical and Translational Sciences and has been employed at Curis May 2015. Previously, he was Senior Medical Director in the Oncology Translational Innovation at EMD Serono and Director of Clinical Research and Translational Research Physician at Bristol-Myers Squibb Oncology Research, involved in the development of Ipilimumab and other immune checkpoint inhibitors, as well as Taxol and early development of other novel anti-cancer agents. Dr. Tuck was an Associate Professor at Yale University where he led a research lab focused on cancer genomics and bioinformatics. Dr. Tuck earned his AB from Harvard University and Medical Degree at the University Of Vermont School Of Medicine, and is board certified in internal medicine, medical oncology and hematology.

Prasad Adusumilli
Deputy Chief, Thoracic Service

Day Two

Thursday March 16

09.30 | Insights Into The Optimal Combination Strategies To Convert Cold To Hot Tumors

Scott Woodman
Assistant Professor
MD Anderson Cancer Center

Øystein Rekdal
Lytix Biopharma

Andrew Saunders
Lytix Biopharma

Soner Altiok
Nilogen Oncosystems

Parker Cassidy
Chief Commercial Officer
Mitra Biotech

Rick Huntress
Director, Business Development, Clinical & In Vivo Services
The Jackson Laboratory

Amy Beebe
Senior Principal Scientist

Amy Beebe received her Ph.D. degree in Microbiology from the University of California, Davis. She holds a B.S. degree in Biology from the University of California, San Diego.  She joined DNAX Research Institute in April 1994 as a post-doctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Robert Coffman, where she studied the genetic basis of CD4+ Th1 vs. Th2 differentiation.  She has since held various positions in Biologics Discovery at Schering-Plough and then Merck Research Laboratory, and is currently a Senior Principal Scientist in Immuno-oncology. Amy’s focus has been on using animal models to understand the mechanism of biologic candidates and leading teams in the translation of basic research findings into early development.

Jennifer Brogdon
Director, Exploratory Immuno-Oncology,

Jennifer Brogdon, Senior Investigator II in the Immuno-Oncology department of the Novartis Institute for Biomedical Research, oversees the CAR T cell Research Collaboration with the University of Pennsylvania to develop personalized T cell therapies for Oncology.  She is also the Research representative for the development program for CTL019.  In addition to the CAR work, she is actively engaged in other Immuno-Oncology therapeutic programs in NIBR, Due Diligence efforts and has made significant contributions to a variety of publications and patent applications. She trained in Immunology at Duke University (PhD) and Yale University (Postdoc).  Her academic training in T cell biology has been the focus of her drug discovery research since she joined NIBR in 2004.

Pedro Beltran
Oncology Research, Executive Director

Pedro is currently an Executive Director in the Oncology Research Therapeutic Area at Amgen Inc., Thousand Oaks, California. He earned a B.S. in Molecular Biology from the Florida Institute of Technology in 1992. He then joined the laboratory of Dr. Isaiah J. Fidler in the Cell Biology department at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center where he completed graduate work in mechanisms of drug resistance in tumor cells leading to a Ph.D. in Cancer Biology from the University of Texas, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (1998). He expanded his knowledge of basic sciences by pursuing post-doctoral work in Neuroscience at the laboratory of Dr. John Bixby, University of Miami School of Medicine, where he worked on axon growth and guidance. His passion for Oncology and Drug Development led him to join Amgen’s Oncology Research Team as a Research Scientist in 2003. As part of Amgen’s Oncology Research team he has led many large and small molecule Research and Pharmacology teams, including ganitumab (Amgen’s Phase III, IGF-1R fully human monoclonal antibody program). He has been the Global Discovery Research Leader for talimogene laherparepvec for the past 2 years and also leads a team of 28 Scientists and Research Associates working on multiple drug development programs. He is an author in over 30 scientific publications, is a member of the American Association for Cancer Research and has presented at multiple Advisory Board meetings and national/international oncology research meetings.

Day Two

Thursday March 16

15.00 | Mechanisms Of Action Of Talimogene Laherparepvec: From Bench To Bedside

Moitreyee Chatterjee-Kishore
Senior Director, Immuno-Oncology

Moitreyee Chatterjee-Kishore, Ph.D., MBA is a Compound Development Team Leader at Janssen Oncology. In this position she is responsible for a developing a portfolio of early development cancer immunotherapy assets from late discovery through market authorization. Prior to this position she was an Early Pipeline Lead for Oncology and Immunology programs at Abbvie. She has more than 15 years’ experience in the development of large molecules including bi-specifics, antibody-drug conjugates and other novel scaffolds.  

Alison O’Mahony
Vice President of Research Biology (BioMAP)

Day One

Wednesday March 15

16.00 | Enabling Cancer Immunotherapy From Discovery To Combinations

Viviana Cremasco,
Investigator III

Viviana Cremasco attended Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, USA, for her Ph.D., and later joined the Dana–Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, Massachusetts, USA, for her postdoctoral training. There, she explored the cellular and molecular mechanisms governing stroma–immune cell crosstalk in lymphoid organs and in the tumor microenvironment. She is now an investigator at Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA, where she is pursuing novel approaches to target the tumor microenvironment in the immuno-oncology team.  

Phil Gotwals
Executive Director, Immuno-Oncology

Dr. Gotwals is currently executive director of exploratory immuno-oncology at Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research, and has been instrumental in building the company’s immuno-oncology strategic research area, including Novartis’ collaboration with the University of Pennsylvania to develop chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-T cell therapy. Dr. Gotwals has more than 20 years of experience in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries, leading internal and collaborative R&D programs from drug discovery to new drug application filing and participation in the licensing of product candidates. He was formerly vice president of project management at Altus Pharmaceuticals, where he was responsible for all product development project management activities. Prior to his engagement at Altus, he was senior director of program and alliance management at Biogen, where he oversaw leadership of internal and allied early product development teams in the autoimmune, neurology, and oncology therapeutic areas. Dr. Gotwals holds a Ph.D. in genetics from the University of California at Berkeley, and completed postdoctoral research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Geoff Gibney
Co-Leader, Melanoma Disease Group
Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center

Dr. Gibney is a medical oncologist and Associate Professor of Medicine at Georgetown University. He is also the co-leader of the Melanoma Disease Group and a member of the Developmental Therapeutics (Phase I) program at the Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center. His clinical and translation research efforts are directed at the development of novel immune and targeted therapeutic strategies for patients with advanced melanoma as well as other malignancies. Past work has contributed to new immunotherapy strategies with the sequencing of nivolumab and ipilimumab in advanced melanoma, adjuvant use of anti-PD-1 therapy in resected melanoma, and combination immune checkpoint and IDO1 inhibition in advanced malignancies. Currently, he is focused on translational research efforts with biomarker development for immunotherapies, management of immune toxicities, and identifying novel immunotherapy combination strategies.

Marie Kosco-Vilbois

CSO of Novimmune SA, Switzerland, responsible for overseeing the discovery and development of antibody-based drugs for the targeted treatment of inflammatory and rare diseases, immune-related disorders and cancer.  Prior industry experience includes GlaxoWellcome, Serono and Roche, the latter as a member of the Basel Institute for Immunology. Holds a doctorate in Immunology and Human Anatomy from Virginia Commonwealth University, USA, author of 150+ peer-reviewed publications in the fields of immunology and biopharmaceutical research and inventor on numerous patents especially as related to antibodies as therapeutics and antibody generation platforms.

David Kaufman
Executive Director, Translational Immuno- Oncology

Day One

Wednesday March 15

08.30 | Evaluating The Role Of Precision Medicine In Immuno-Oncology

Barbara Joyce-Shaikh
Associate Principal Scientist

Barbara Joyce-Shaikh completed her B.S in with Molecular Biology at San Jose State University. She has more than 20 years of biotech industry experience specializing in translational systems of immune function and immunoncology. Her work has contributed several patents as well as  medical literature published in journals such as Nature, Immunity, Nature Medicine, and the Journal of Experimental Medicine. She is currently a Project Leader in the Discovery Immunoncology group at Merck Research Laboratories, Palo Alto (Formerly DNAX Research Institute).  Her current research utilizes humanized mouse systems  and is focused on understanding how tumor stroma and immune cell interactions can be altered  with  novel immunomodulatory agents in different cancers.  

Afternoon Workshops

Tuesday March 14

13.00 | Workshop B: Harnessing In Vivo Models For The Development Of IO Therapeutic Agents