Kenneth Kinzler, PhD is Professor of Oncology at The Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and a member of the National Cancer Institute’s Scientific Advisory Board. According to the Institute for Scientific Information in Philadelphia, Dr. Kinzler is one of the most influential scientists alive today. He has produced classic studies of the genes causing human cancer including the discovery of APC, the gene that initiates virtually all colorectal tumors. His subsequent analyses of the functional properties of the APC gene product have had widespread ramifications for developmental biology as well as cancer biology. He is also internationally renowned for his development of genetic methods for analyzing gene expression and mutations in human cancer. His work has spawned over 100 patent applications, most focused on the use of genetic approaches to improve the diagnosis and management of patients with cancers and other serious diseases.
Nickolas Papadopoulos, PhD
Dr. Nickolas Papadopoulos is an expert in cancer diagnostics and the development of diagnostic tests. He is known as a co‐discoverer of the genetic basis of the predisposition to hereditary nonpolyposis colon cancer (HNPCC). His discovery that mutations in the mismatch repair genes (MSH2, MLH1, MSH6, and PMS2) predispose to HNPCC had important ramifications for the understanding of cancers with a very high rate of mutations and led to the development of diagnostic tests for the presymptomatic diagnosis of individuals with HNPCC. He was part of the interdisciplinary team that was first to sequence all of the protein coding genes and determine genetic alterations and construct expression profiles in multiple tumors of four different common human cancers. A noteworthy discovery he has made in the recent years is the identification of novel, signature mutations in ovarian clear cell carcinomas and pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors. These mutations are in genes that control epigenetic changes in the cell. Currently, he is focused on translating the genetic information derived from cancer genome analyses to clinical applications in early detection, diagnosis and monitoring of cancer. He is a co-developer of sensitive methods for the detection of tumor DNA in liquid biopsy.