Director and Associate Director's Message: Changes in Molecular Oncology Program Leadership

The following is a message from Director Stan Gerson, MD and Associate Director for Basic Research Ruth Keri, PhD.

The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center would like to thank Bingcheng Wang, PhD and Alex Almasan, PhD for their hard work in leading the

Alex Almasan
Alex Almasan, PhD
Bingcheng Wang
Bingcheng Wang, PhD

Molecular Oncology Program (MO) for the past few years. As you likely know, their commitment and dedication resulted in an Outstanding to Excellent score of MO in the last CCSG competing renewal, an improvement over the prior competing renewal in 2012.

With renewal comes time for reflection and Bing and Alex are eager to focus their efforts on their collaborative research with members of the cancer center. As co-leaders, Bing and Alex and took on the challenge of reorganizing two prior programs into the one MO program that exists today. Through their engagement in multiple research themes, facilitation of the discovery process and promotion of transdisciplinary science, they formed a very effective leadership team while maintaining their independent research programs and leveraging their expertise to mentor MO members, in turn, furthering translation of MO discoveries into the clinic. 

Both Bing and Alex will continue on as active members of our center. Bing will be leveraging his over 25 years of experience interrogating fundamental mechanisms of tumor etiology and progression, continuing his investigation of the roles of Eph receptor tyrosine kinases in invasive growth and distal metastasis of cancer cells. With over 30 years of interest in cell death and proliferation mechanisms, Alex will continue his research on therapeutic resistance in leukemic cells. 

Portrait of Quintin Pan, PhD
Quintin Pan, PhD
Portrait of Justin Lathia, PhD
Justin Lathia, PhD

Following review of the strengths, needs and research interests of current program members, we are pleased to announce that Justin Lathia, PhD and Quintin Pan, PhD have accepted the challenge of leading MO for the next several years. 

Justin has been a valuable member of the Case CCC since 2011. His research is focused on studying cancer from a stem cell perspective and is currently collaborating with Jill Barnholtz-Sloan on sex differences in glioblastoma. Justin is associate staff at Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute and associate professor of molecular medicine at CWRU. 

Quintin, who joined our Center last year from Ohio State, is Deputy Director for Research at UH Seidman Cancer Center and professor of Otolaryngology at CWRU. He is focused on translational oncology research, with a broad research interest on novel anti-cancer target and molecule discovery using head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) as the model system. 

Justin and Quintin look forward to building strong bridges between investigators across the city, as well as identifying and reinforcing new focus areas of research with the goal of facilitating the development of multi-investigator projects and grants. 

Please join us in thanking Alex and Bing for their contributions and congratulating Justin and Quintin on their new roles!