UC San Diego Sparks New Cancer-Focused Startup, Oncternal, with Exclusive Antibody License

Oncternal Therapeutics, a new cancer-focused biotechnology startup, has signed a wide-ranging licensing agreement with UC San Diego to develop and commercialize antibodies and antibody-related binding agents.

Oncternal is based on the pioneering research of UC San Diego scientist and clinician Thomas J. Kipps, Distinguished Professor, Evelyn and Edwin Tasch Chair in Cancer Research, and deputy director of research operations at the Moores Cancer Center on campus. … Read the Full Story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Protein-Protein Interaction Activates and Fuels Leukemia Cell Growth

December 21, 2015

Findings also show how an experimental monoclonal antibody treatment inhibits growth and spread of cancer —

Building upon previous research, scientists at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and UC San Diego Moores Cancer report that a protein called Wnt5a acts on a pair of tumor-surface proteins, called ROR1 and ROR2, to accelerate the proliferation and spread of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) cells, the most common form of blood cancer in adults.

They note, however, that these effects of Wnt5a were blocked by a humanized monoclonal antibody specific for ROR1, called cirmtuzumab (or UC-961), which inhibited the growth and spread of CLL cells in both cell lines and mouse models of leukemia. The findings are published in the December 21, 2015 issue of The Journal of Clinical Investigation. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Dr. Thomas Kipps

Dr. Thomas Kipps

Thomas J. Kipps, MD, PhD, senior author of the study report, is Evelyn and Edwin Tasch Chair in Cancer Research and deputy director for research at Moores Cancer Center. He is Professor of Medicine in the Divisions of Hematology-Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplantation.

Read the study report in The Journal of Clinical Investigation (full text, UC San Diego only). J Clin Invest. doi:10.1172/JCI83535.

UC San Diego Researcher Receives $6.25 Million Grant

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society has awarded Thomas J. Kipps, MD, PhD, Distinguished Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, with a 5-year, $6.25 million Specialized Center of Research program grant to support research on chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), the most common adult leukemia in the United States. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego News Center


Dr. Thomas Kipps

Dr. Thomas Kipps

Thomas J. Kipps, MD, PhD, is the Evelyn and Edwin Tasch Chair in Cancer Research and UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center deputy director for research.

See other UC San Diego news stories about Dr. Kipps and his work.

Developmental Protein Plays Role in Spread of Cancer

A protein used by embryo cells during early development, and recently found in many different types of cancer, apparently serves as a switch regulating the spread of cancer, known as metastasis, report researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center in the June 15, 2013 issue of the journal Cancer Research. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Thomas Kipps

Dr. Thomas Kipps

Thomas Kipps, MD, PhD, Evelyn and Edwin Tasch Chair in Cancer Research, is principal investigator of the study reported in Cancer Research.

Kipps is professor of medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology and deputy director of research at the UCSD Moores Cancer Center.

All study coauthors are affiliated with the Department of Medicine and the Moores Cancer Center.

Citation for the published study: Cui B, Zhang S, Chen L, Yu J, Widhopf GF II, Fecteau J-F, Rassenti LZ, and Kipps TJ. Targeting ROR1 Inhibits Epithelial–Mesenchymal Transition and Metastasis. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-12-3832 Cancer Res June 15, 2013 73; 3649  |  Read the abstract

Monoclonal Antibody Targets, Kills Leukemia Cells

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego Moores Cancer Center have identified a humanized monoclonal antibody that targets and directly kills chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) cells…. Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Thomas KippsThomas Kipps, MD, PhD, Evelyn and Edwin Tasch Chair in Cancer Research, is principal investigator of the study, which was reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Kipps is professor of medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology and deputy director of research at the UCSD Moores Cancer Center.

Citation for the published study: Zhang S, Wu CCN, Fecteau J-F, Cui B, Chen L, Zhang L, Wu R, Rassenti L, Lao F, Weigand S, Kipps TJ. Targeting chronic lymphocytic leukemia cells with a humanized monoclonal antibody specific for CD44  PNAS 2013; published ahead of print March 25, 2013, doi:10.1073/pnas.1221841110  |  Read the abstract

UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center Among Nation’s Best

Becker’s Hospital Review issues annual list of 70 “great” hospitals and health systems

UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center is the only San Diego hospital to be featured in Becker’s Hospital Review list of “70 Hospitals and Health Systems with Great Oncology Programs” … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom

Dr. Thomas J. Kipps
The interim director of the Moores Cancer Center is Thomas J. Kipps, MD, PhD. Kipps is Evelyn and Edwin Tasch Chair in Cancer Research and professor of medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology. He is deputy director of research and co-leader of the Hematologic Malignancies Program.

Embryonic Development Protein Active in Cancer Growth

Silencing it impairs tumor growth, making ROR1 a potential therapeutic target

A team of scientists at the University of California, San Diego Moores Cancer Center has identified a novel protein expressed by breast cancer cells – but not normal adult tissues – that could provide a new target for future anti-cancer drugs and treatments… Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom

Thomas J. Kipps, MD, PhD

Study senior investigator Thomas J. Kipps, MD, PhD, is Evelyn and Edwin Tasch Chair in Cancer Research and professor of medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology. He is Interim Director of the UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center, where he co-leads the Hematologic Malignancies Program.

Dr. Kipps is principal investigator of the UC San Diego site in the Cancer Immunotherapy Trials Network, a research network established last year by the National Cancer Institute and headquartered at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle.

Dr. Kipps was named to the National “Top Doctors” List for 2011-2012. In both 2010 and 2011, he was selected for the “San Diego Top Doctors” list.

Cancer Center Evaluating New Treatment for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

Dr. Januario E. CastroMoores UCSD Cancer Center investigators have begun a clinical trial of a new treatment for chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

The study, a Phase I safety trial, is enrolling selected patients whose leukemia has resisted initial treatment or who have a particular chromosomal abnormality.

The study is headed by Dr. Januario E. Castro and employs a new leukemia vaccine that was developed from the work of Dr. Thomas J. Kipps.

Januario E. Castro, M.D., is Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Bone Marrow Transplantation.

Thomas J. Kipps, M.D., Ph.D., is Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology and Deputy Director for Research at the Moores UCSD Cancer Center.

Read the full story
from UC San Diego
Health Sciences Communications

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