Knight Cancer Research Building, 4th Floor Lounge

Developing new effective treatments for cancer patients

The Center for Experimental Therapeutics at the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute is working to develop better treatments for cancer patients through collaboration within OHSU and with other academic centers, biotech and pharma companies around the world.

The center unites cutting-edge technologies with a multidisciplinary group of clinicians and scientists to advance drug discovery and development. OHSU is one of the few universities nationally, to bring together the infrastructure to translate scientific discoveries from the lab into effective therapies for human diseases.

Targeted drug development and discovery

The center focuses on drug development and discovery from preclinical phases to clinical and translational research. Refer to the image below for a full list of phase chronology.

The center focuses on preclinical drug discovery and development to clinical and translational research.

The table below outlines the center's focus areas within preclinical and clinical and translational research phases of drug development and discovery:

Preclinical Drug Discovery and Development Clinical and Translational Research
High throughput screening Protocol design and development
Assay development Regulatory support
Medicinal chemistry and probe development All phases of clinical trials
ADME-Tox Biomarker assay development and validation
Pharmacokinetics CLIA – omics and immune markers
Model development (Cell line, Xenograft, PDX) Biospecimen acquisition and analysis

Experts in drug development

Sanjay Malhotra, Ph.D., and Shivaani Kummar, M.D., co-lead the center. Malhotra’s background is in chemical biology and drug development with a strong expertise in medicinal chemistry, including small molecule synthesis. Kummar has a wealth of experience in conducting clinical trials tailored to make early, informed decisions regarding the suitability of new drug candidates for further clinical investigation. Kummar also leads the Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology in the OHSU School of Medicine.

OHSU Knight Cancer Institute CEO Brian Druker, M.D., revolutionized the treatment of cancer through research that resulted in the first drug to target the molecular defect of a cancer while leaving healthy cells unharmed. Marketed under the name Gleevec®, his discovery turned a once-fatal cancer, chronic myeloid leukemia, into a manageable condition.

A culture of collaboration

The center is based in the Knight Cancer Research Building, a state-of-the-art research facility designed to support a collaborative atmosphere that brings multidisciplinary scientists together under one roof.

Knight Cancer Research Building

Based in the Knight Cancer Research Building

A seven-story, 320,000-square-foot building designed for collaboration. This state-of-the-art research facility features an open laboratory design, centralized, shared equipment and core facilities in order to bring together people from different scientific disciplines and accelerate research progress.