Robert L. Ferris, MD, PhD

Dr. Ferris is a co-Founder and scientific advisor for Novasenta. He is Hillman Professor of Oncology and Director at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center, Associate Vice Chancellor for Cancer Research at University of Pittsburgh, and Professor of Otolaryngology, of Immunology, and of Radiation Oncology. Dr. Ferris currently serves on the Editorial Boards of JNCI, JCO, Clinical Cancer Research, Cancer Immunology Research. He is Editor in Chief of Oral Oncology. Dr. Ferris has published over 400 peer-reviewed manuscripts, which have been cited over 45,000 times producing an h-index over 100. He served as co-chair of the NCI Steering Committee for 6 years to facilitate prospective clinical trials.

Dr. Ferris has been lead investigator of several practice-changing, prospective randomized trials, including Checkmate-141 which led to the FDA approval of nivolumab immunotherapy for head and neck cancer in 2016, ECOG 3311, testing radiation dose-deintensification for HPV+ oropharynx cancer, and ECOG-ACRIN 3132, using disruptive p53 mutation for molecular staging of high-risk cancer. The Ferris lab has been continuously funded by the NCI since 2005, focused on neoadjuvant “window” trials of immuno-oncology agents, and developing single-cell RNA sequencing and proteomic technologies for novel therapeutics and biomarkers of response in the tumor microenvironment, collaborating with many early phase biotech companies to develop new therapeutic agents. He serves on multiple scientific advisory boards for early phase biotech companies.