Plenary Keynote Session


Advancing Precision Immuno-Oncology

4:20 pm Plenary Keynote Introduction

Benjamin G. Neel, MD, PhD, Professor, Medicine, NYU Grossman School of Medicine; Director, Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Cancer Center, NYU Langone Health

4:25 The Rapid Evolution of Precision IO: The Future Role of Biomarkers in IO Development in Clinical Utilization

Zhen Su, MD, MBA, CEO, Marengo Therapeutics

As we turn the corner into a new decade, scientific and technological advances are helping to achieve a more precision approach for immunotherapy. While PD-L1 staining offers enrichment, mutation burden, microsatellite instability, and other immune biomarkers may be able to advance the precision approach. Evolution and real-world adaptation of testing tools, such as companion diagnostic capabilities, will become the new focal point to advance patient care.

4:55 Lessons Learned from BCMA and CD19 CAR-T Trials

Kristen M. Hege, MD, Senior Vice President, Early Clinical Development, Hematology/Oncology and Cell Therapy, Bristol Myers Squibb

Dr. Hege will discuss drawing correlations between patient and product characteristics and clinical outcomes for iterative improvement; identifying variables associated with CAR-T expansion and persistence; understanding mechanisms and predictors of non-response, durable response and tumor escape; and new directions for cell therapy.

5:25 Immuno-Oncology Summit Connects


Benjamin G. Neel, MD, PhD, Professor, Medicine, NYU Grossman School of Medicine; Director, Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Cancer Center, NYU Langone Health
Dr. Neel is the Director of the Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Cancer Center and Professor of Medicine at NYU Langone Health in New York City. His research focuses on cellular signaling, with a particular interest in the biology and regulation of protein-tyrosine kinases and protein-tyrosine phosphatases, the role and regulation of the RAS/ERK pathway in pancreas and lung cancer, and the biology of ovarian cancer. Dr. Neel earned his PhD in viral oncology from The Rockefeller University in 1982 and his MD from Cornell University Medical School the following year. His graduate work on oncogene (Myc) activation by slowly transforming RNA tumor viruses had major impact on the field. He previously held positions as the William B. Castle Chair of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Director of Hematology-Oncology Research and Head of the Cancer Biology Program at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, as Director of Research at Princess Margaret Cancer Center, and as Canada Research Chair and Professor of the Medical Biophysics at the University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Dr. Neel has authored >250 primary papers and 33 reviews, many in leading journals including Cell, Molecular Cell, Developmental Cell, Science, Nature, Nature Medicine and Nature Genetics. His work has been cited >50,000 times (h-index=117, i10=262). He is an elected member of the AAP, former Program Chair of the Annual Meeting and Member of Board of Directors of AACR, recipient of the initial Gertrude Elion Award of AACR and the Premier of Ontario Summit Award, and co-founded Northern Biologics, Navire Pharmaceuticals, and Jengu Therapeutics.

Zhen Su, MD, MBA, CEO, Marengo Therapeutics
As CEO of Marengo Therapeutics and a director of the company’s board, Zhen Su brings more than two decades of experiences as a physician-scientist and business executive, with expertise in building and leading both R&D and commercial organizations. Prior to joining Marengo, Zhen served as Senior Vice President and Global Head of Oncology for Merck KGaA, where he led the franchise’s turnaround to achieve double-digit organic growth and an annual revenue above €1B. In this role, he also successfully expanded the oncology portfolio including key alliance partnerships with Pfizer ($2.8B), GSK ($4.2B), and Debiopharm ($1.1B). In his earlier role as Chief Medical Officer of EMD Serono and head of its Oncology Medical division, he played an instrumental role in 8 major regulatory approvals across different indications for Bavencio®, Tepmetko®, Erbitux®, and Mavenclad®. He also held leadership roles with increasing responsibilities at Sanofi Oncology and GSK. Before his industry career, Zhen served on the faculty of Duke University, where he led early clinical studies focusing on mRNA-based and cell-based immunotherapy, and then the University of Florida, where he was the director of the Cell and Gene Therapy program. He is the author of more than 60 publications in immuno-oncology and targeted oncology. Zhen earned his M.D. from the Technical University of Dresden, completed his post-doctoral training in tumor immunology at Duke University, and received an MBA from the University of Toronto.

Kristen M. Hege, MD, Senior Vice President, Early Clinical Development, Hematology/Oncology and Cell Therapy, Bristol Myers Squibb
Dr. Hege is SVP, Early Clinical Development, Hematology/Oncology & Cell Therapy at Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS). Previously, she spent 10 years at Celgene where her team advanced a pipeline of small molecules, biologics and T cell therapies. She has led the bluebird-partnered BCMA CAR T cell program (ide-cel) in multiple myeloma from inception through FDA approval. Prior to joining Celgene, she held multiple executive roles at Cell Genesys, Cellerant, and Theraclone.

In addition to her work at BMS, Dr. Hege is a Clinical Professor of Medicine at UCSF where she continues to see patients with blood cancers weekly. Dr. Hege also serves on the Board of Directors of Mersana Therapeutics and was elected to the Board of Directors for the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) for a 3-year term from 2016-2019. Dr. Hege received her MD at UCSF and residency and hematology/oncology subspecialty training at Harvard and UCSF, respectively. In 2015, she was recognized by Fierce Biotech as one of the top 12 women in Biopharma. Her career path and long history with CAR T cell development was featured as part of the 25th anniversary celebration of Nature Medicine.

Final Agenda Available

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