Newswise — NEW YORK, April 17, 2017—The Cancer Research Institute (CRI), a nonprofit organization established in 1953 to advance biomedical research with the goal of developing lifesaving immunotherapies for all forms of cancer, announced today that it has appointed Aiman Shalabi, Pharm.D., MBA, BCOP, as the organization’s chief medical officer. In the role, he will provide strategic direction and integrated oversight for CRI’s cancer immunotherapy clinical trial program, the CRI Anna-Maria Kellen Clinical Accelerator. This new appointment reflects CRI’s commitment to deliver clinical innovations and unlock cures for patients with all types of cancer.
Dr. Shalabi joins CRI with over 17 years’ experience developing transformative medicines. Most recently he was vice president and head, Immuno-Oncology Global Medical Affairs at AstraZeneca where he served in leadership roles to develop an immunotherapy program from pre-clinical stage to FDA submission. He has also been part of the development of five new medicines, several of which are approved globally. Prior to his industry experience, Dr. Shalabi also managed a portfolio of oncology agents at the US National Cancer Institute, Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program (CTEP) and led the compassionate use program providing cancer patients with access to new medicines prior to regulatory approval.
“Aiman is a pioneer in clinical collaborations in combination immunotherapy research and development, and through his role at MedImmune/AstraZeneca, our first industry collaborator, he contributed significantly to the early growth of the CRI Anna-Maria Kellen Clinical Accelerator,” said Jill O’Donnell-Tormey, Ph.D., CEO and director of scientific affairs at the Cancer Research Institute. “We are pleased he will be joining forces with CRI as we grow our clinical enterprise with our academic and industry partners.”
The CRI Anna-Maria Kellen Clinical Accelerator is a unique industry-academia collaboration model designed to unlock the potential of combination cancer immunotherapies. Dr. Shalabi will oversee the program, working with a comprehensive set of nonprofit resources that includes a global network of more than sixty leading scientists, clinical trials management capabilities, venture philanthropy funding, along with operational, reagent access, and co-funding partnerships with more than twenty nonprofit and industry organizations.
“I am delighted to work with the Cancer Research Institute and look forward to growing and accelerating research collaborations for groundbreaking precision immunotherapy combinations,” said Dr. Shalabi. “The most important inventions I have witnessed in my career resulted from collaborating with experts from academia. Having this opportunity to build on these experiences will help us achieve our common goal—finding cures for patients with cancer.”
About the Cancer Research Institute
The Cancer Research Institute (CRI), established in 1953, is the world’s leading nonprofit organization dedicated exclusively to transforming cancer patient care by advancing scientific efforts to develop new and effective immune system-based strategies to prevent, diagnose, treat, and eventually cure all cancers. Guided by a world-renowned Scientific Advisory Council that includes three Nobel laureates and 26 members of the National Academy of Sciences, CRI has invested $336 million in support of research conducted by immunologists and tumor immunologists at the world’s leading medical centers and universities, and has contributed to many of the key scientific advances that demonstrate the potential for immunotherapy to change the face of cancer treatment. To learn more, go to cancerresearch.org.