Newswise — NYU Langone Health has announced that nationally renowned physician and researcher Raoul Tibes, MD, PhD, will lead efforts to expand the clinical and investigative leukemia programs at its Perlmutter Cancer Center.

With a notable career in hematology that synergistically crosses between clinical care and laboratory research, Dr. Tibes joins Perlmutter Cancer Center from Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale and Phoenix, where he served as an assistant professor of medicine and a clinical consultant to Mayo Clinic’s Arizona-based facilities.

Dr. Tibes’s research focuses on developing more effective therapies for acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), acute myeloid leukemia (AML), and myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), as well on identifying mechanisms of resistance to current therapies for these diseases. His clinical trials and laboratory work led to the development of the first-of-its-kind smoothened (SMO)/Hedgehog pathway inhibitor, a pathway that is altered by mutations in certain types of cancer. He was closely involved in the first trials demonstrating the activity of SMO inhibitors in basal cell carcinomas, which ultimately led to U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of this drug class. He has since extended his research to focus on SMO/Hedgehog pathway inhibitors in myeloid malignancies, as well as the DNA damage response in leukemia therapy.

“Dr. Tibes has a unique expertise and perspective, as both a clinician and a researcher, to lead the clinical application of genomic discoveries and advances in targeted therapies for blood cancer,” says Benjamin G. Neel, MD, PhD, director of Perlmutter Cancer Center. “Under his leadership, we will improve the care and quality of life for patients by moving preclinical results and novel therapeutic combinations more rapidly into the clinic. Raoul will develop investigator-initiated trials along with specific biomarkers for blood cancers like leukemia. He will also work closely with Samer-Al Homsi, MD, our recently arrived director of bone marrow transplantation.”

About Dr. Tibes

Dr. Tibes received his medical degree and doctorate from Ludwig Maximilians University Medical School in Munich. He completed his internship and residency at NYU School of Medicine and a fellowship in medical oncology and hematology at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. Before joining Mayo Clinic in 2010, he held academic and research positions at the Translational Genomics Research Institute in Phoenix, the Scottsdale Clinical Research Institute at Virginia Piper Cancer Center, and University of Arizona College of Medicine.

He has published more than 70 scientific articles in top peer-reviewed journals, including Cancer Medicine, Leukemia Research, The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA Oncology), Lancet Oncology, and the New England Journal of Medicine. He is also a recipient of prestigious awards, including the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Young Investigator Award as well as ASCO’s Career Development Award and he was recently named a Scholar in Clinical Research of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

“I am honored to join Perlmutter Cancer Center and to be asked to lead the clinical and translational leukemia program,” says Dr. Tibes, associate professor of Hematology and Medical Oncology at NYU School of Medicine. “Leukemia is a disease that affects tens of thousands of Americans every year. The research we conduct, and its translation into clinical practice, will ensure patients have access to the latest treatment options available to them.”