Dana-Farber faculty to present research at AACR Annual Meeting 2019

Posted date

More than 36 Dana-Farber Cancer Institute faculty are presenting research at the AACR (American Association of Cancer Research) Annual Meeting 2019 on March 29 to April 3 in Atlanta, Georgia. The AACR Annual Meeting program covers the latest discoveries in cancer research and highlights the work of experts from institutions all over the world.

Two early career scientists from Dana-Farber have been selected NextGens Stars, an AACR program that increases visibility of early career scientists at the AACR Annual Meeting. Benjamin Izar, MD, PhD, will give a Major Symposium titled: Development of therapeutic strategies by resolving the tumor ecosystem on April 1 and David Liu, MD, Fellow will give a Major Symposium titled: Dissecting genomic correlates of response and resistance to chemotherapy in bladder cancer through clinical computational oncology on April 2.

Gordon J. Freeman, PhD, researcher at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School is included in the prestigious group of the newly elected class of Fellows of the AACR Academy.  The AACR will formally induct its 2019 class of elected Fellows of the AACR Academy at the AACR Annual Meeting 2019.

Select presentations at the 2019 AACR Annual Meeting include:

Author: Chen Yuan, ScD

Title: Pre-diagnostic circulating concentrations of vitamin D binding protein and survival among colorectal cancer patients

Presentation Number: 3297

Poster Board Number: 17

Session Time: Tuesday, April 2, 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon.  Section 27

Abstract: https://www.abstractsonline.com/pp8/#!/6812/presentation/1805


People with higher blood levels of vitamin D binding protein (VDBP) – which attaches to vitamin D and helps transport metabolites of the vitamin – before being diagnosed with colorectal cancer may live longer than those with lower levels of the protein, a study by Dana-Farber researchers suggests. By analyzing data from the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study and the Nurses’ Health Study, investigators found that higher pre-diagnostic VDBP levels were associated with a significant increase in overall survival and survival relating to colorectal cancer. The findings support further research into the value of VDBP as a prognostic marker for patients with colorectal cancer, and into the biological mechanism by which the protein may improve survival.

Author: Brendan Reardon

Title: A molecular oncology almanac for integrative clinical interpretation of molecular profiles to guide precision cancer medicine

Presentation Number: 2470

Poster Board Number: 10

Session Time: Monday, April 1, 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.  Section 31

Abstract: https://www.abstractsonline.com/pp8/#!/6812/presentation/6069

To help cancer physicians tailor treatment to the molecular features of different types of cancer, researchers at Dana-Farber and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard have compiled assertions of genomic alterations and clinical actions into a Molecular Oncology Almanac and placed it online for research use. The almanac, available at http://moalmanac.org, enables users to search for specific molecular irregularities in patients’ cancers to learn which drugs – ranging from FDA-approved to preclinical evidence – are likely to confer sensitivity or resistance in those cancers. In a test of the almanac’s utility, researchers evaluated tumors from 260 patients with metastatic prostate cancer or metastatic melanoma to identify which were likely to be sensitive to specific therapies. Overall, 80 percent of the patients had at least one alteration suggesting vulnerability to approved or investigational agents. The almanac’s algorithm also highlighted additional therapies based on comparison to cell lines that otherwise would not have been evident.


Author: Patrick D. Bhola, PhD

Title: High-throughput dynamic BH3 profiling identifies active cancer therapies in solid tumors

Presentation Number:  4478

Session Time and Location: April 2, 2019, 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM/Room B312 of the George World CC

Abstract: https://www.abstractsonline.com/pp8/#!/6812/presentation/2035

Dana-Farber scientists developed a method called high-throughput dynamic BH3 profiling that can test hundreds of cancer drugs on freshly isolated tumor cells to predict whether they will be effective against a patient’s cancer. An important advantage over previous methods, they say, is that it only requires 24 hours of exposure to the drug to determine if the tumor will be sensitive to it. The researchers applied the method to human colon and thyroid tumors and sarcomas to identify potential active therapies.

Media Contacts

If you are a journalist and have a question about this story, please call 617-632-4090 and ask to speak to a member of the media team, or email media@dfci.harvard.edu.

The Media Team cannot respond to patient inquiries. For more information, please see Contact Us.