Co-op Locations



Faculty Mentors

Nathalie Agar, M.D.

Associate Professor, Neurosurgery, Brigham and Women's Hospital

Develops & validates mass spectrometry imaging methodologies to study neuro-oncology and guide the care of patients affected by brain cancer. Students will have the opportunity to image drug and metabolite transit through the blood-brain barrier in pre-clinical animal models and clinical trial patients treated with targeted therapy, with the goal of developing new brain-penetrating agents.

Kenneth Anderson,

Physician of Oncology , Brigham and Women's Hospital

Focuses on translational research in multiple myeloma. Students will have the opportunity to characterize factors in the marrow microenvironment which allow tumor cell homing, growth and resistance to apoptosis in the marrow millieu in order to identify and validate next-generation novel small molecule and immune targeted therapies.

Tracy Batchelor, M.D.

Executive Director, Stephen E. and Catherine Pappas Center for Neuro-Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital

Develops novel therapeutics for malignant primary brain tumors. Students will have the opportunity to image and characterize tumor markers of sensitivity and resistance to anti-angiogenic therapeutics, with the goal of defining and exploiting alternative pro-angiogenic targets.

Ross I Berbeco, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology, Harvard Medical School

Our lab performs theoretical and experimental studies of systemically administered nanoparticles and their role in enhancing radiation therapy for cancer treatment. Students will have the opportunity to functionalize these particles with tumor-specific targeting moieties and study how this leads to localized disruption of the tumor vasculature.
Keywords: cancer, nanoparticles, gold, radiation

Cesar Martin Castro, M.D.

Instructor in Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital

Our research seeks to bridge current needs in clinical oncology with novel nanosensing technologies to selectively detect and profile cancer cells and tissues. Students will examine the feasibility of using magneto-DNA nanoparticles to characterize rare cancer cells in unpurified human clinical samples including ascites and blood.
Keywords: biosensing, circulating tumor cells, molecular profiling, cancer biomarkers

Ciprian Catana, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Professor in Radiology , Harvard Medical School

Our laboratory seeks to improve the quantification of the PET data using the simultaneously acquired MR information in integrated MR-PET scanners. Students will have the opportunity to use advanced MR-PET methods to study the delivery, mechanism of action and effects of therapeutic agents in cancer patients.
Keywords: Imaging, instrumentation, MR-PET, brain tumors

Robert A Cormack, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology, Harvard Medical School

Our lab has shown that nanoparticles can enhance the effects of radiation therapy, thereby potentially improving patient outcomes. Students in this research group will explore ways to improve brachytherapy by developing new nanoparticle-based devices to enable minimally invasive means of delivering chemotherapeutic agents directly to tumors.
Keywords: prostate cancer, radiation, nanoparticles, drug delivery

James A DeCaprio, M.D.

Professor of Medicine, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Using targeted mouse models, our lab studies host cell proteins that interact with polyoma virus oncoproteins. Students will study host perturbations following the systemic administration of synthetic viral nano-complexes in order to identify novel tumor suppressors and oncogenes in Merkel cell carcinoma.
Keywords: viruses, merkel cell carcinoma, retinoblastoma, gene expression

Daniela Dinulescu, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Pathology, Harvard Medical School

The Dinulescu laboratory focuses on the biology of ovarian cancer and endometriosis, with a strong interest in cancer genomics and proteomics, rational drug design and targeted therapies, methods of early detection, and cancer prevention. Students will work on developing “homing” nanoparticles that selectively target and sensitize ovarian cancer cells to chemotherapy.
Keywords: ovarian cancer, cancer biology, mouse models, drug resistance

Georges El Fakhri, Ph.D.

Professor of Radiology, Harvard Medical School

The El Fakhri lab has pioneered novel approaches for quantitative SPECT and PET, and the objective assessment of oncologic images. Students will use quantitative methods to characterize and optimize the analysis of experimental nanoparticle-based imaging agents used in vivo.
Keywords: imaging, image analysis, therapeutic monitoring, pharmacokinetic modeling

Dai Fukumura, M.D.

Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology, Massachusetts General Hospital

Studies host-tumor interaction in angiogenesis, vascular function, tumor growth, and response to treatment. Students will combine intravital microscopy and fluorescent gene reporter systems to develop novel anti-tumor therapies.

Irene Ghobrial, M.D.

Attending Physician, Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

My research focuses on identifying mechanisms of progression in Multiple Myeloma progression, those that are cell autonomous or those dependent on the bone marrow niche. We examine genetic and epigenetic alterations that regulate tumor dissemination and the role of the bone marrow niche in disease progression from early precursor stages (MGUS and smoldering myeloma) to active Multiple Myeloma. I have a broad background in the biology of multiple myeloma and the bone marrow niche. I am the leader and founder of the Center for Prevention of Progression (CPOP) at DFCI, which is based on the premise that early detection and prevention can significantly alter the disease course in hematological malignancies. I am also the leader of the Blood Cancer Research Partnership, a consortium of 11 oncology sites for clinical trials.

William Hahn, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

We have a longstanding interest in cooperative genetic alterations that program malignant transformation and has developed many experimental model systems to study specific genetic alterations. Students will use therapeutic tumor-penetrating siRNA nanocomplexes to identify, validate, and understand potential therapeutic cancer.
Keywords: genomics, epithelial cancer, siRNA, cancer biology

Mukesh Harisinghani, M.D.

Professor of Radiology, Harvard Medical School

We develop magnetic nanoparticle-based platforms for use as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) contrast agents in cancer diagnosis. Students will have the opportunity to study nanoparticle-enhanced MRI data from clinical trials in order to improve the detection of lymph node metastases.
Keywords: MRI, cancer detection and staging, prostate cancer, magnetic nanoparticles

Tayyaba Hasan, Ph.D.

Professor of Dermatology, Harvard Medical School

Our group has extensive expertise in the photodynamic therapy of cancer, infections, and infectious disease, as well as targeted drug delivery using site-directed photochemistry. Students will participate in the design and testing of photoactivatable nanoparticles for the treatment of ovarian, prostate, pancreatic, or head and neck cancer.
Keywords: photodynamic therapy, imaging, nanoparticles

Pasi Janne, M.D.

Director, Lowe Center for Thoracic Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Integrates bench-based studies with clinical trials of novel therapeutic agents. Students will test anti-cancer drugs in cells and tissues harvested from lung cancer patients, with the long-term goal of developing a rationale for individualizing patient therapy based on mutations

Catherine Ju-Ying Wu, M.D.

Chief of Division of Stem Cell Transplantation and Cellular Therapies, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Identifies novel immune targets for immune-based therapy of hematologic malignancies. Students will have opportunity to develop and test nanoparticle-based vaccines, alone and in combination with other immunotherapies for cancer treatment.

Anne Klibanski, M.D.

Physician in Medicine,, Massachusetts General Hospital

Studies the pathogenesis and hormone regulation of pituitary tumors, with the goal of identifying more effective therapies for endocrine tumor treatment. Students will have the opportunity to test and validate new therapeutic strategies in vitro, as well as analyze clinical trial data.

Judy Lieberman, M.D.

Chair in Cellular and Molecular Medicine , Boston Children's Hospital

Studies how RNA interference regulates and dysregulates cell differentiation in order to develop new drugs to treat or prevent cancer. Students will characterize anti-cancer therapeutics comprised of membrane-anchored lipoproteins that are incorporated into siRNA-loaded lipid nanoparticles.

Umar Mahmood, M.D.

Vice Chair for Precision Imaging, Department of Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital

Develops molecular imaging tools for cancer treatment and treatment monitoring. Students will have the opportunity to create and validate new imaging probes, develop cell and animal models with clinically relevant pathologies, and aid in the clinical translation of successful technologies.

G Mike Makrigiorgos, Ph.D.

Professor of Radiation Oncology, Harvard Medical School

We apply nanoparticle-based approaches for DNA molecular diagnostics, PCR-based detection of DNA alterations, as well as the enrichment and identification of cancer biomarkers from blood-circulating DNA/RNA. We also combine site-specific image-guided irradiation with nanoparticle based approaches for enhancing detection of circulating biomarkers via ‘liquid biopsy’.
Keywords: molecular profiling, PCR, sequencing, circulating cancer biomarkers, early detection, radiation

Nathan McDannold, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Radiology, Brigham And Women's Hospital

Develops drug delivery strategies that utilize focused-ultrasound and microbubbles to increase the permeability of the blood-brain barrier. Students will assess and optimize chemotherapy delivery and drug retention following ultrasound-induced brain tumor permeability enhancement.

Zdravka Medarova, Ph.D.

Associate Professor in Radiology, Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging

The focus of my research has been the development and testing of multi-functional imaging/delivery vehicles for combined cancer imaging and therapy. More recently, our lab developed magnetic nanoparticles as delivery vehicles of miRNA-targeted therapy to breast tumors.
Keywords: genetics, cancer biology, molecular imaging

Wilfred Ngwa, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology, Brigham And Women's Hospital

My work integrates research, clinical service, and teaching in Radiation Oncology, with current focus on developing smart biomaterials (Tiny drones to Target cancer) designed to boost local and metastatic tumor cell kill with minimal collateral damage or side effects.
Keywords: Condensed Matter Physics, Biophysics, Medical Physics

Brendan Price, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Department of Radiation Oncology , Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Studies the signaling systems utilized by cancer cells to detect DNA damage and deactivate cell cycle checkpoints. Students will have the opportunity to use newly developed tools including Zinc Finger Nucleases and CRISPR coupled with Chromatin Immunoprecipitation to study how altered chromatin organization can lead to resistance to cancer therapy.

Jinjun Shi, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Anaesthesia, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School

He has extensive experience in the research fields of nanomedicine and biomaterials, and has developed many multifunctional nanoparticle platforms for the delivery of therapeutic small molecules, proteins and nucleic acids.
Keywords: nanotechnology, biomaterials, drug delivery, Immunotherapy

Timothy Springer, Ph.D.

Latham Family Professor of Pathology, IDI, Boston Children's Hospital

Studies receptor-ligand interactions and transmembrane signaling, with the goal of improving receptor-specific therapeutics for cancer. Students will investigate how integrins and TGF-β1 can be utilized as potential immuno-oncology targets.

Srinivas Sridhar, Ph.D.

Professor of Physics, BioEng, & ChemEng, Northeastern University

Our lab specializes in the development of nanoplatforms for cancer drug delivery and multi-modal contrast agents for simultaneous clinical imaging. Students will explore how multifunctional nanoparticles can offer potential benefits in wide range of applications such as in sensing, diagnostics, drug delivery, and image enhancement.
Keywords: Nanoparticles, drug delivery, multi-modal contrast agents, inhibitors

Annick D. van den Abbeele, M.D.

Chief of Radiology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

A major goal of our research laboratory is to use anatomic & functional imaging in pre-clinical and clinical settings as a noninvasive whole-body tool to evaluate novel cancer therapies. Students will participate in the study design, image analysis and interpretation of pre-clinical and patient data that support the development of novel therapies in cancer.
Keywords: molecular imaging, positron emission tomography, response biomarkers

Ralph Weissleder, M.D., Ph.D.

Professor of Radiology, Harvard Medical School

Our lab aims to use novel imaging and sensing techniques to measure major protein and network hubs of interest in a quantitative and predictive manner. Students will combine advanced microscopic imaging with systemically injectable nanoparticle-based sensors to perform quantitative single cell analysis of cancers during drug treatments in vivo.
Keywords: imaging, biosensing, proteomics, single-cell analysis