Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center announces the following appointments:
An internationally recognized medical oncologist with more than two decades of experience treating and managing people with lymphoma, Dr. Younes’s research efforts were instrumental in the development of brentuximab vedotin, the first targeted drug approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of patients with Hodgkin lymphoma in more than three decades.
As Chief of Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Lymphoma Service, Dr. Younes is responsible for continuing to accelerate the translation of scientific discoveries into novel treatment strategies to improve the cure rate and survival of patients with Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Dr. Younes is particularly interested in developing novel targeted therapies and linking them to biomarkers that can help match patients with the most effective and minimally toxic medicines.
Before joining Memorial Sloan Kettering this year, Dr. Younes served as Director of Clinical Investigation and Translational Research in the Department of Lymphoma/Melanoma at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, in Houston. Dr. Younes completed a hematology oncology fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering, and residencies in internal medicine and pathology at the State University of New York Downstate Medical Center, in Brooklyn, and the Medical College of Ohio, in Toledo. He received his MD degree from the University of Damascus School of Medicine, in Syria.
Dr. Younes has served as the principal investigator of more than 60 clinical trials, and led the National Cancer Institute–funded SPORE (Specialized Programs of Research Excellence) in lymphoma. He serves on the Scientific Advisory Board of the Lymphoma Research Foundation, and is a member of the National Cancer Institute Lymphoma Steering Committee.
David S. Klimstra, MD, has been appointed Chair of the Department of Pathology and incumbent of the James Ewing Alumni Chair of Pathology.
Dr. Klimstra is a board-certified surgical pathologist who is highly regarded for his expertise in the surgical pathology of tumors of the pancreas, gastrointestinal tract, liver, lung, salivary glands, and neuroendocrine organs. He has more than 20 years of diagnostic experience in tumor pathology at Memorial Sloan Kettering. Over the course of his career he has published more than 275 peer-reviewed articles and has served on the editorial boards for several journals. He has also coauthored textbooks that are among the most widely read references on the pathology of the pancreas, gallbladder, and bile ducts, and he has made substantial contributions to the World Health Organization’s classifications of tumors of the gastrointestinal tract, pancreas, and neuroendocrine system.
Dr. Klimstra’s research involves the correlation between the morphologic features of tumors, which serve as the basis for classification, and clinical outcome, prognostic factors, and molecular genetic alterations. His work has also contributed to our understanding of the process of carcinogenesis and the pathologic precursor lesions that precede the development of overt cancers in the pancreas and other organs.
Dr. Klimstra earned his MD degree and completed residency training at Yale University School of Medicine. He came to MSKCC in 1991 as a special fellow in pathology and joined the faculty in 1992. He has significant prior leadership experience, having served as the Director of the Pathology Fellowship Program from 1998 to 2005, as Chief of the Surgical Pathology Service from 2005 to 2011, and as Acting Chair of Pathology since July 2011.
Julio Garcia-Aguilar, MD, PhD, has been named Chief of the Colorectal Service in the Department of Surgery and incumbent of the Stuart H. Q. Quan Chair.
Dr. Garcia-Aguilar has dedicated his career to the surgical care of people with colon and rectal cancer and is an expert in minimally invasive laparoscopic and robotic techniques for performing these surgeries. His research focuses on improving the quality of life of patients with rectal cancer by performing smaller operations and by identifying individuals whose tumors might respond sufficiently to radiation and chemotherapy so that surgery could be avoided altogether.
Before joining Memorial Sloan Kettering, Dr. Garcia-Aguilar was Chair of the Department of Surgery at City of Hope, in Duarte, California, and previously had been Chief of Colon and Rectal Surgery at the University of California, San Francisco. He earned his MD and PhD degrees at the Complutense University of Madrid, in Spain, where he also trained as a resident. He completed a second surgical residency and a fellowship at Beth Israel Hospital/Harvard Medical School, and a fellowship in colon and rectal surgery at the University of Minnesota. He is board certified in general surgery and in colon and rectal surgery.
Wolfgang Weber, MD, has joined Memorial Sloan Kettering as Chief of the Molecular Imaging and Therapy Service (formerly known as the Nuclear Medicine Service) in the Department of Radiology and Director of the Laurent and Alberta Gerschel Positron Emission Tomography Center.
Wolfgang Weber is a nationally and internationally recognized leader in molecular imaging and targeted radionuclide therapy — particularly in the use of positron emission tomography in oncology. As a translational researcher and designer of clinical studies, he has focused on monitoring how tumors respond to therapy and developing radiotracers for targeted imaging and therapy.
He is the author or coauthor of more than 100 peer-reviewed publications, which have appeared in such prestigious journals as the Journal of Clinical Oncology and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and has served on the editorial boards of several scientific journals. His expertise has made him a highly sought-after mentor for graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, and physician-scientists.
Dr. Weber received his medical education, training, and advanced degrees (the equivalent of a PhD degree) at the Technical University of Munich, in Germany. In 2003 he joined the Department of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology at the University of California. In 2007, he returned to Germany as Chairman of Nuclear Medicine at the University of Freiburg.