Brian J. Druker, M.D.

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503 494-5058


Dr. Druker's research focuses on activated tyrosine kinases with an emphasis on signal transduction and cellular transformation and the application of this knowledge to cancer therapies. The BCR-ABL oncogene is his lab's primary model system because of its central role in the pathogenesis of a human disease, chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). Numerous tyrosine phosphorylated proteins have been identified in BCR-ABL transformed cells and projects are ongoing to define their necessity for BCR-ABL function. These studies include mutational, biochemical and genetic approaches. Imatinib (Gleevec), a specific inhibitor of the ABL protein tyrosine kinase, has been proven to be an effective therapeutic agent in CML. However, it is not capable of eliminating all leukemic cells. In laboratory correlate studies done alongside imatinib clinical trials, Dr. Druker's lab learned that ABL kinase domain mutations are the most common mechanism of resistance to imatinib. Using this information, his team has evaluated several novel ABL inhibitors that are now available to treat patients with Gleevec resistance. Lastly, Dr. Druker's lab is performing screens for other tyrosine kinases that may be pathogenic in other leukemias and has developed functional assays that allow rapid target identification.

Summary of Current Research

Special Interests

Chronic myeloid leukemia

Selected Publications

"Imatinib 800 mg daily induces deeper molecular responses than imatinib 400 mg daily: Results of SWOG S0325, an intergroup randomized PHASE II trial in newly diagnosed chronic phase chronic myeloid leukaemia," British Journal of Haematology (Vol: 164, Issue: 2, Page 223-232) - 2014

"Janet Rowley (1925-2013).," Nature (Vol: 505, Issue: 7484, Page 484-) - 2014

"BCR-ABL1 compound mutations in tyrosine kinase inhibitor-resistant CML: Frequency and clonal relationships," Blood (Vol: 121, Issue: 3, Page 489-498) - 2013

"Comparison of methods to identify aberrant expression patterns in individual patients: Augmenting our toolkit for precision medicine," Genome Medicine (Vol: 5, Issue: 11, ) - 2013

"CX-4945, a selective inhibitor of casein kinase-2 (CK2), exhibits anti-tumor activity in hematologic malignancies including enhanced activity in chronic lymphocytic leukemia when combined with fludarabine and inhibitors of the B-cell receptor pathway," Leukemia (Vol: 27, Issue: 10, Page 2094-2096) - 2013


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Memberships & Associations

Institute of Medicine: National Academy of Sciences American Association of Physicians, National Academy of Sciences American Society for Clinical Investigation American Society of Hematology, American Society of Clinical Oncology American Association for Cancer Research American Association for the Advancement of Science American Society for Microbiology Children’s Oncology Group The American Society for Cell Biology