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Merrill S. Kies, M.D.

Present Title & Affiliation

Primary Appointment

Professor, Department of Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology, Division of Cancer Medicine, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX

Dual/Joint/Adjunct Appointment

Deputy Division Head, MDA Cancer Network, Division of Cancer Medicine, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX

Bio Statement

Merrill S. Kies, MD, is Professor of Medicine in the Department of Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. His past positions include Professor of Medicine and Clinical Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery of the Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago. He  is also the Director of Clinical Programs for the Department of Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology; M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. 

Dr. Kies received his medical degree from Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine in Chicago. His postgraduate training included an internship and residency in internal medicine at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC and a fellowship in hematology and oncology at Brooke Army Medical Center in Fort Sam Houston, Texas. Dr. Kies is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and holds subspecialty certification in medical oncology. He is a fellow of the American College of Physicians. 

Dr. Kies’s research interests include combined modality treatment of head/neck cancer and non–small-cell lung cancer, new drug development, and rehabilitation in head and neck cancer. He has lectured nationally and internationally on topics related to head and neck cancers. Dr. Kies is a member of numerous professional organizations including the American Society of Clinical Oncology and The American Head and Neck Society.  

Office Address

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
1515 Holcombe Blvd.
Unit Number: 432
Houston, TX 77030
Room Number: FC9.3020
Phone: 713-792-6363
Fax: 713/792-1220

Education & Training

Degree-Granting Education

1973 Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine, Chicago, IL, MD, Medicine

Postgraduate Training

1976-1980 Fellowship, Hematology/Oncology, Brooke Army Medical Center, Fort Sam Houston, TX
1974-1976 Residency, Internal Medicine, Walter Reed General Hospital, Washington, DC
1973-1974 Internship, Medicine, Walter Reed General Hospital, Washington, DC

Selected Publications

Peer-Reviewed Original Research Articles

1. Hanna EY, Cardenas AD, DeMonte F, Roberts D, Kupferman M, Weber R, Rosenthal D, Kies M. Induction Chemotherapy for Advanced Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Paranasal Sinuses. Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 137(1):78-81, 1/2011. PMID: 21242552.
2. Schwartz DL, Hutcheson K, Barringer D, Tucker SL, Kies M, Holsinger FC, Ang KK, Morrison WH, Rosenthal DI, Garden AS, Dong L, Lewin JS. Candidate Dosimetric Predictors of Long-Term Swallowing Dysfunction After Oropharyngeal Intensity-Modulated Radiotherapy. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 78(5):1356-65, 12/1/2010. e-Pub 6/18/2010. PMID: 20646872.
3. Bell D, Roberts D, Kies M, Rao P, Weber RS, El-Naggar AK. Cell type-dependent biomarker expression in adenoid cystic carcinoma: biologic and therapeutic implications. Cancer 116(24):5749-56, 12/2010. e-Pub 9/2010. PMCID: PMC2998592.
4. Garrido-Laguna I, Janku F, Falchook GS, Fu S, Hong DS, Naing A, Aaron J, Wang X, Kies M, Kurzrock R. Patients with advanced head and neck cancers have similar progression-free survival on phase I trials and their last food and drug administration-approved treatment. Clin Cancer Res 16(15):4031-7, 8/1/2010. e-Pub 6/4/2010. PMID: 20525754.
5. Byers LA, Holsinger FC, Kies MS, William WN, El-Naggar AK, Lee JJ, Hu J, Lopez A, Tran HT, Yan S, Du Z, Ang KK, Glisson BS, Raso MG, Wistuba II, Myers JN, Hong WK, Papadimitrakopoulou V, Lippman SM, Heymach JV. Serum Signature of Hypoxia-Regulated Factors Is Associated with Progression after Induction Therapy in Head and Neck Squamous Cell Cancer. Mol Cancer Ther 9(6):1755-63, 6/2010. e-Pub 6/8/2010. PMCID: PMC2913168.
6. William WN, Kies MS, Fossella FV, Liu DD, Gladish G, Tse WH, Lee JJ, Hong WK, Lippman SM, Kim ES. Phase 2 study of carboplatin, docetaxel, and bevacizumab as frontline treatment for advanced nonsmall-cell lung cancer. Cancer 116(10):2401-8, 5/2010. PMID: 20225327.
7. Williams MD, Roberts DB, Kies MS, Mao L, Weber RS, El-Naggar AK. Genetic and expression analysis of HER-2 and EGFR genes in salivary duct carcinoma: empirical and therapeutic significance. Clin Cancer Res 16(8):2266-74, 4/2010. e-Pub 4/2010. PMID: 20371674.
8. Kies MS, Holsinger FC, Lee JJ, William WN, Glisson BS, Lin HY, Lewin JS, Ginsberg LE, Gillaspy KA, Massarelli E, Byers L, Lippman SM, Hong WK, El-Naggar AK, Garden AS, Papadimitrakopoulou V. Induction Chemotherapy and Cetuximab for Locally Advanced Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Head and Neck (SCCHN): Results From a Phase II Prospective Trial. J Clin Oncol 27(23):8-14, 1/2010. e-Pub 11/2009. PMCID: PMC2799235.
9. Salama JK, Haddad RI, Kies MS, Busse PM, Dong L, Brizel DM, Eisbruch A, Tishler RB, Trotti AM, Garden AS. Clinical Practice Guidance for Radiotherapy Planning After Induction Chemotherapy in Locoregionally Advanced Head-and-Neck Cancer. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 75(3):725-33, 11/2009. PMID: 19362781.
10. Hanrahan EO, Kies MS, Glisson BS, Khuri FR, Feng L, Tran HT, Ginsberg LE, Truong MT, Hong WK, Kim ES. A Phase II Study of Lonafarnib (SCH66336) in Patients With Chemorefractory, Advanced Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Head and Neck. Am J Clin Oncol 32(2):274-9, 6/2009. PMID: 19433965.
11. Barringer DA, Hutcheson KA, Sturgis EM, Kies MS, Lewin JS. Effect of induction chemotherapy on speech and swallowing function in patients with oral tongue cancer. Head Neck 31(5):611-617, 5/2009. PMID: 19107949.
12. Holsinger FC, Kies MS, Diaz EM, Gillenwater AM, Lewin JS, Ginsberg LE, Glisson BS, Garden AS, Ark N, Lin HY, Lee JJ, El-Naggar AK, Hong WK, Shin DM, Khuri FR. Durable Long-Term Remission With Chemotherapy Alone for Stage II to IV Laryngeal Cancer. J Clin Oncol 27(12):1976-82, 4/2009. PMID: 19289628.
13. Sulman EP, Schwartz DL, Le TT, Ang KK, Morrison WH, Rosenthal DI, Ahamad A, Kies M. Glisson B, Weber R, Garden AS. Imrt Reirradiation of Head and Neck Cancer-Disease Control and Morbidity Outcomes. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 73(2):399-409, 2/2009. PMID: 18556144.
14. Zinner RG, Komaki R, Cox JD, Glisson BS, Pisters KM, Herbst RS, Kies M, Liao Z, Hong WK, Fossella. Dose Escalation of Gemcitabine Is Possible with Concurrent Chest Three-Dimensional rather than Two-Dimensional Radiotherapy: A Phase I Trial in Patients with Stage III Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 73(1):119-27, 1/2009. PMID: 18556142.


1. Garden AS, Kies MS, Weber RS. To TORS or Not to TORS: but is that the question? Comment on "transoral robotic surgery for advanced oropharyngeal carcinoma". Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 136(11):1085-7, 11/2010. PMID: 21079161.


1. Kies MS. Chemoradiation for Larynx Cancer: Progress and Pitfalls. Current Concepts in Head & Neck Surgery, 11/2010.
2. Varghese JM, Lu C, Kudelka A, Sherman I, Kies MS, Busaidy L, Cabanillas ME. Role of Cytotoxic Chemotherapy in Advanced Differentiated Thyroid Cancer: a review of the MD Anderson (MDACC) experience. 14th International Thyroid Congress, 9/2010.
3. Sabichi AL, Kies MS, Glisson BS, Lu C, Ginsberg LE, Bartos CI, Feng L, Tran HT, Lippman SM, Blumenschein Jr GR. A phase II study of sorafenib in combination with carboplatin and paclitaxel in patients with metastatic or recurrent squamous cell cancer of the head and neck (SCCHN). J Clin Oncol, 2010 ASCO Annual Meeting Abstracts 28(7s) (#5532), 6/2010.
4. Bowles TL, Ross MI, Kies MS, Prieto V, Myers J, Cormier JN, Mansfield PF, Lee JE, Gershenwald JE. Patterns of recurrence in 208 patients with Merkel cell carcinoma. J Clin Oncol, 2010 ASCO Annual Meeting Abstracts 28(7s) (#8556), 6/2010.
5. Kies M, Blumenschein G, Christensen O, Lin T, Tolcher A. Phase I study of regorafenib (BAY 73-4506), an inhibitor of oncogenic and angiogenic kinases, administered continuously in patients (pts) with advanced refractory non-small-cell-lung cancer (NSCLC). J Clin Oncol, 2010 ASCO Annual Meeting Abstracts 28(7s) (#7585), 6/2010.
6. Garden AS, Morrison WH, Rosenthal DI, Goisson BS, Weber RS, Schwartz DL, Kies MS, Frank SJ, Ang KK, Sturgis EM. Patterns of Disease Recurrence Following Radiation for Oropharyngeal Cancer. American Society of Radiation Oncology (#67), 11/2009.
7. Kies MS, Harris J, Rotman MZ, Myers JN, Foote RL, Machtay M, Khuntia D, Straube WL, Ang KK, Harari PM. Phase II Randomized Trial of Postoperative Chemoradiation Plus Cetuximab for High-Risk Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Head and Neck (RTOG 0234). American Society for Radiation Oncology (#29), 11/2009.
8. Kies M. Individualized therapy for locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN). Oral Oncology Head & Neck Oncology & Pathology 3(1):9, 7/2009.
9. Byers LA, Heymach JV, Lee JJ, Lin H, El-Naggar AK, Papadimitrkopoulou V, Lippman SM, Hong WK, Holsinger FC, Kies MS. Association between human papilloma virus (HPV) status with serum cytokine and angiogenic factor (CAF) profile after induction chemotherapy in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Proc Am Soc Clin Onc 27(15S):321s (#6081), 5/2009.
10. Gibson MS, Kies M, Kim S, Savvides P, Kotsakis A, Blumenschein G, Worden F, Chen H, Grandis J, Argiris A. Cetuximab (C) and bevacizumab (B) in patients with recurrent or metastatic haed and neck squamous cell carcinoma: An updated report. Proc Am Soc Clin Onc 27(15s):313s (#6049), 5/2009.
11. Holsinger FC, Dong W, Bekele N, Weber RS, Kies MS, Glisson BS,. Clinicopathologic predictors of distant metastasis in head and neck cancer. Proc Am Soc Clin Onc 27(15s):322s (#6086), 5/2009.
12. Zinner R, Herbst RS, Fossella FV, Johnson FM, Karp DD, Kies MS, Heymach JV, Price JS, Lippman SM, Erasmus J. Results from short-term CT assessments in patients (pts) with advanced poor ps non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) receiving pemetrexed in a phase II trial. Proc Am Soc Clin Onc 27(15s) (#19069), 5/2009.
13. Cabanillas ME, Kurzrock R, Bidyasar S, Wheler J, Fu S, Naing A, Sherman S, Gagel R, Waguespack S, Busaidy N, Sellin R, Hu M, Kies M, Hong DS. Phase I Trial of Combinatin Sorafenib and Tipifarnib: Update on the Experience in Advanced Differentiated Thyroid Cancer (DTC) and Medullary Thyroid Cancer (MTC). World Congress on Thyroid Cancer, 2009.

Book Chapters

1. Gold KA, Kies MS. Treatment of Disseminated Non-Melanoma Skin Cancers. In: Cancer of the Skin, 2nd. Ed(s) Rigel DS, Robinson JK, Ross M, Friedman RJ, Cockerell CJ, Lim HW, Stockfleth E, Kirkwood JM. Elsevier Saunders: Philadelphia, PA, 526-531, 2011.
2. William WN Jr., Kies MS. Chemotherapy and Targeted Biologic Agents for Head and Neck Cancer. In: Cummings Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery, Fifth Edition. Ed(s) Cummings CW, et al. Elsevier Mosby: Springfield, IL, 1051-1063, 2010.
3. Kies MS. Principles of Chemotherapy. In: Microsurgical Reconstruction of the Head and Neck. Ed(s) PC Neligan, FC Wei. Quality Medical Publishing, Inc. St. Louis, MO, 53-76, 2010.
4. Tsao, AS, Kies MS. Novel Systemic Therapy for Advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer. In: General Thoracic Surgery. 2, 7th. Ed(s) TW Shields, J Locicero, CE Reed, RH Feins. Wolters Kluwer/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins: Philadelphia, 1497, 2009.

Books (edited and written)

1. Harrison LB, Sessions RB, Hong WK. Ed(s) Kies MS, Hu KS, Mendenhall WM, Mukherju SK, Wenig BM. Assoc Ed(s). Head and Neck Cancer. In: A Multidisciplinary Approach, Third Edition. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins: Philadelphia, PA, 2009.

Last updated: 6/11/2015