WPC Banner  

Tumor Models to Guide Targeted Cancer Therapy and Drug Development

Cambridge Healthtech Institute’s Tumor Models to Guide Targeted Cancer Therapy and Drug Development conference aims to bring together cancer researchers and clinicians working on development of molecularly targeted cancer therapies, and to initiate a knowledge exchange around preclinical models and their optimization. Highly characterized patient-derived tumor tissue xenograft models that allow us to more effectively evaluate novel targeted therapeutics as well as to identify predictive biomarkers in early stages of drug development will be discussed. Case studies and solutions for increasing the reproducibility and predictability of preclinical cancer studies will be presented.

Day 1 | Day 2 | Oncology Brochure 

Wednesday, May 21

7:00 am Registration and Morning Coffee


8:00 Chairperson’s Opening RemarksTerry A. Van Dyke, Ph.D., Head, Mouse Cancer Genetics Program; Program Director, Cancer Pathways and Mechanisms, National Cancer Institute 

8:05 FEATURED PRESENTATION: Making Decisions with Cell Line and Patient-Derived Xenograft Models in Drug Discovery and Development

Anderson ClarkAnderson Clark, Ph.D., Director, In vivo Pharmacology, Oncology, EMD Serono Research & Development Institute

The focus of this presentation will be around the ways in which we place different types of in vivo cancer models within the contexts of drug discovery and development at EMD Serono. Cell line xenograft models will be considered, but the emphasis will be on the use of patient-derived tumor models -- when and how do we use them, how do we interpret the data and how do we translate those data for clinical decision-making.

8:35 FEATURED PRESENTATION: Computational Modeling of Cancer Genomics  Franziska Michor, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Biostatistics and Computational Biology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Department of Biostatistics, Harvard School of Public HealthRecent advances in high-throughput profiling of cancer genomes have enabled the generation of an unprecedented amount of data. The analysis of this data requires the development of novel computational and mathematical modeling approaches. This presentation will discuss state-of-the art modeling methods and will feature several topics such as mathematical modeling of cancer initiation and progression, treatment response and resistance and evolution of genomic aberrations

9:05 Tumorgraft Avatar Platform for Clinical Advancement

Neal Goodwin, Ph.D., Vice President, Corporate Research Development, Champions Oncology, Inc.

A patient-derived xenograft (TumorGraft) platform has been established where patient tumors are engrafted to form mouse-avatar TumorGraft models for translational and clinical studies. Therapeutic treatment responses in these mouse avatars are being used prospectively to guide patient treatment and the avatar-directed treatment outcomes correlated with patient treatment outcomes.

9:35 Coffee Break in the Exhibit Hall with Poster Viewing


10:15 Chairperson’s Opening RemarksNeal Goodwin, Ph.D., Vice President, Corporate Research Development, Champions Oncology, Inc.

10:20 FEATURED PRESNETATION: Preclinical Evaluation in Engineered Cancer Models: A Path to Accelerated Clinical Development? 

Terry A. Van DykeTerry A. Van Dyke, Ph.D., Head, Mouse Cancer Genetics Program; Program Director, Cancer Pathways and Mechanisms, National Cancer Institute

Progress in the emerging area of human-predictive preclinical animal model platforms will be overviewed. Our work in this arena is carried out at the NCI Center for Advanced Preclinical Research (NCI-CAPR), a novel initiative developed by the Center for Cancer Research (CCR, NCI). CAPR achieves its mission to develop efficient and predictive preclinical strategies through extensive internal and collaborative partnerships. Recent and ongoing studies in one or more of the following areas will be discussed: pancreatic cancer, glioblastoma, lung adenocarcinoma, melanoma and/or serous ovarian cancer.

10:50 Modeling Tumor Cell Dormancy in the Mouse

Jeffrey GreenJeffrey E. Green, M.D., Chief, Transgenic Oncogenesis and Genomics Section, Laboratory of Cancer Biology and Genetics, National Cancer Institute

Tumor recurrence may occur from the reactivation of dormant tumor cells into clinically manifest metastatic disease, which is a major cause of patient morbidity and mortality. The use of in vitro and in vivo models to decipher mechanisms of tumor cell dormancy and their use for preclinical testing will be presented. Translating these findings may greatly improve patient outcome.

11:20 Innovative Approaches to PDX- Based Preclinical Profiling of Anticancer Agents

Sabine Gorynia, Ph.D., Project Manager, Project Management, Oncotest GmbH

Advances in our understanding of the complexity of cancer -including tumor heterogeneity, the role of the tumor micro-environment and the ability of tumors to evolve under therapy- present increasing challenges to the models used to support the discovery and preclinical development of anti-tumor therapies. Oncotest, as pioneers in the field of Patient Derived Xenografts, are continuously developing and adapting their modelling system to help clients better address these challenges.

11:50 The Co-Clinical Trial Paradigm: Improving Predictive Value of Preclinical Studies

Andrew KungAndrew L. Kung, M.D., Ph.D., Director, Pediatric Hematology, Oncology and Stem Cell Transplantation, New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital, Columbia University Medical Center

Conventional mouse studies are poor predictors of efficacy in human clinical trials. The predictive value of preclinical studies may be improved by utilizing newer models that recapitulate the complexity of human disease, along with response criteria that are better aligned with clinical measures of success. The use of genetically engineered mouse models, patient-derived xenografts, and molecular imaging will be reviewed in the context of the co-clinical trial paradigm.

12:20 Use of PDX-BL0293, a Patient Derived Xenograft Model of Bladder Cancer, to Test Drug Efficacy

Cedo BagiCedo Bagi, M.D., Ph.D., Senior Research Fellow, Worldwide Comparative Medicine, Global Science & Technology, Pfizer Global R&D





12:50 Luncheon Presentation I: Using of Patient Derived Engraft Models to Support Preclinical Trials of Oncology Therapeutics

Thomas B. Broudy, Ph.D., CSO, Molecular Response LLC

The depth and breadth of the Molecular Response tumor bank (144k specimens, 76 clinical diagnoses) enables broad-based PDX studies in patient populations meeting specific inclusion/exclusion criteria, such as: mutational status, failed prior therapy or metastatic lesions. By approximating clinical trials in the preclinical setting, we help our partners to establish more confident clinical development strategies--responsive patient populations, effective combination agents, predictive diagnostic tests, and strategies to delay resistance.

1:20 Luncheon Presentation II (Sponsorship Opportunity Available)

1:50 Session Break

(Shared Session between Tumor Models for Targeted Therapy and Imaging in Oncology)

2:00 Chairperson’s Remarks

Paul Acton, Scientific Director and Janssen Fellow, Global Head, Molecular Imaging, Johnson & Johnson

2:05 Translatability of Preclinical Modeling: Case Study of Development of a Targeted Therapeutic with an Imaging Companion Diagnostic

Ingrid JosephIngrid Joseph, D.V.M., Ph.D., Senior. Director, Pharmacology, Agensys, an affiliate of Astellas Pharma, Inc.

Traditional xenograft models utilize immortalized cancer cells grown on plastic that exhibit a genetic drift. Therefore, they do not represent the total genetic/epigenetic heterogeneity of the original cancers. Despite demonstrating efficacy in these models, a majority of cancer therapeutics fail in the clinic. Patient derived tumors grown as xenografts (PDXs) appear to maintain the histopathology/molecular characteristic of the original tumor. A case study utilizing PDX models better suited for targeted therapy will be discussed.

2:35 Molecular Imaging for Patient Selection and Predicting Treatment Response

Paul ActonPaul Acton, Scientific Director and Janssen Fellow, Global Head, Molecular Imaging, Johnson & Johnson

Personalized medicine would provide the key diagnostics required to deliver more effective targeted therapies, avoiding unnecessary or ineffective treatments, and reducing side effects. This presentation will outline several approaches to developing predictive imaging biomarkers, including imaging of labeled drugs, and a novel approach to tagging biologics which allows each drug to become its own companion diagnostic.

3:05 Heparin-Reactive Peptides Preferentially Co-Localize in vivo with Extracellular Melanin – A Novel Biomarker in Metastatic Melanoma Tumors

Jonathan WallJonathan Wall, Ph.D., Professor of Medicine, Human Immunology and Cancer Program; Director, Amyloid and Preclinical Molecular Imaging Laboratory, University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine

Melanoma is the most deadly form of skin cancer with >70,000 individuals diagnosed in 2011 in the USA. During a routine histochemical screen of biotinylated heparin-reactive peptides with a tumor tissue array, we identified certain reagents that preferentially bound melanocytic melanoma tumors. We have now demonstrated peptide reactivity, by using SPECT/CT imaging, co-localization of the peptides with B16F10 murine “metastatic” melanoma tumors within the mouse lung.

3:35 Preclinical and Clinical Applications of Patient Derived Xenograft (PDX) Models;

Yan Yang, Director, Lab Operations in vivo Services, The Jackson Laboratory

The Jackson Laboratory has established a unique collaboration with over 20 clinical centers to advance cancer treatment. Patient tumors transplanted into the NSG mouse are being screened with SOC and experimental therapeutics for preclinical research or the refinement of patient treatment regimens.

Biomodels4:05 Modeling Human Cancer: A Multifaceted Approach to Pre-Clinical Development

Maria L. Mancini, Ph.D., Principal Investigator, Biomodels, LLC

There are a number of key points to consider when designing therapeutics for the treatment of human cancers.  Tumor heterogeneity, stromal contribution, immune response, and treatment resistant sub-populations are all potential confounds that complicate the assessment of novel therapeutic strategies in a pre-clinical setting. Only recently have efforts been directed at treating resistant cell populations (often termed cancer stem cells).   

4:20 Refreshment Break in the Exhibit Hall with Poster Viewing

5:00 Plenary Keynote Presentation:

Christopher AustinCatalyzing Translational Innovation

Christopher P. Austin, M.D., Director, National Center for Advancing, Translational Sciences, National Institutes of Health


6:00 Welcome Reception in the Exhibit Hall with Poster Viewing

7:00 Close of Day

Day 1 | Day 2 | Oncology Brochure 

Five Programs Dedicated to Preclinical Models in Oncology at World Pharma Congress 2014 

Despite tremendous progress in our understanding of cancer biology, most novelanticancer therapies fail in Phase III clinical trials. Can we break this paradigm with more predictive preclinical studies? Join pharmaceutical, biotech and academic stakeholders May 21-23 in Boston, for interactive sessions, panel discussions and short courses all geared toward providing opportunities for active networking and collaborating, while gaining strategic insights into solutions for increasing the reproducibility and predictability of preclinical cancer studies.

Suggested Event Package:

May 20

Pre-Conference Short Course*

Computational Modeling of Cancer Genomics 

May 22-23

Pre-Conference Short Course*

How To Best Utilize Organotypic 3D Cell Cultures Assays In Oncology 

* Separate registration required