Present Title & Affiliation
Professor of Surgery, Department of Surgical Oncology, Division of Surgery, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
Ruben Distinguished Chair in Gastroenterology Cancer Research, Department of Surgical Oncology, Division of Surgery, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
Executive Director for Translational Research, Global Academic Programs, Department of Surgical Oncology, Division of Surgery, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
Vice Chair Translational Medicine, SWOG, Portland, OR
Professor, Department of Molecular and Cellular Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
The overall goal of our laboratory is to investigate mechanisms of tumor growth, metastasis, and resistance to therapies, in gastrointestinal (GI) malignancies with a focus on colorectal cancer.
For over 2 decades, our laboratory has investigated the role of VEGF in tumor growth, metastasis and angiogenesis. We have recently focused our efforts on determining the role of VEGF signaling on and in tumor cells. Investigations in these areas may help elucidate mechanisms of action of anti-VEGF therapy, and help develop new therapeutic approaches. A major focus of the laboratory is to elucidate the complex cross-talk of endothelial cells and tumors cells, and how this influences chemoresistance in the tumor microenvironment. We recently showed that endothelial cells secrete angiocrine factors the mediate the stem-ness of nearby colon cancer cells (Cancer Cell 2013).
Continuing along our translational themes, we are studying mechanisms of resistance to standard chemotherapy for colon cancer. We have established a series of chemotherapy resistant colon cancer lines. Initial investigations demonstrated that oxaliplatin resistant colon cancer cells led to epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) and the cancer stem cell phenotype. Although targeted therapies for GI malignancies has demonstrated promise in clinical trials, we strongly believe that it is important to validate new targets for the next generation of anti-neoplastic regimens. Continuing along our translational themes, we are studying mechanisms of resistance to standard chemotherapy for colon cancer. We have established chemotherapy resistant colon cancer and gastric cancer cell lines. Initial investigations demonstrated that oxaliplatin resistant colon cancer cells led to epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) and the cancer stem cell phenotype. We are now collaborating with John Zhang, adjunct appointment, Department of Cancer Biology, to understand metabolic alterations that occur in chemoresistant cell lines. Similarly, with the input of George Calin, we are studying miRNA alterations in chemoresistant cell lines. Although targeted therapies for GI malignancies has demonstrated promise in clinical trials, we strongly believe that it is important to validate new targets for the next generation of anti-neoplastic regimens.
Education & Training
|1983||University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA, MD, Medicine|
|1979||Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, USA, Undergraduate 1978-1979, Natural Sciences|
|1978||Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA, Undergraduate 1976-1978, Chemistry|
|1990-1992||Surgical Oncology Fellow, Surgical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX|
|1986-1988||Post-Doctoral Fellow, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL|
|1983-1990||General Surgery Resident, Surgery, University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville, FL|
|1991||American Board of Surgery|
Experience & Service
Advisory Board Member, My Faulty Gene, Grand Saline, TX, 2023 - Present
Member, ASCO Access to Essential Cancer Medicines Committee, Bristol, United Kingdom, 2023 - Present
Honors & Awards
|2022||2022 AACR Daniel D. Von Hoff Award for Outstanding Contributions to Education and Training in Cancer Research, American Association for Cancer Research|
|2021||2021 University of Virginia School of Medicine Walter Reed Distinguished Achievement Award, University of Virginia School of Medicine|
|2017||Flance-Karl Award, American Surgical Association|
|2015||John Wayne Clinical Research Lecture, Society of Surgical Oncology|
- Ghosh S, Fan F, Powell RT, Roszik J, Park YS, Stephan C, Sebastian M, Tan L, Sorokin AV, Lorenzi PL, Kopetz S, Ellis LM, Bhattacharya R. Vincristine Enhances the Efficacy of MEK Inhibitors in Preclinical Models of KRAS-mutant Colorectal Cancer. Mol Cancer Ther 22(8):962-975, 2023. e-Pub 2023. PMID: 37310170.
- Fan F, Ghosh S, Powell R, Roszik J, Park Y, Sobieski M, Sorokin A, Stephan C, Kopetz S, Ellis LM, Bhattacharya R. Combining MEK and SRC inhibitors for treatment of colorectal cancer demonstrate increased efficacy in vitro but not in vivo. PLoS One 18(3):e0281063, 2023. e-Pub 2023. PMID: 36952536.
- Von Hoff DD, Clark GM, Coltman CA, Disis ML, Eckhardt SG, Ellis LM, Foti M, Garrett-Mayer E, Gonen M, Hidalgo M, Hilsenbeck SG, Littlefield JH, LoRusso PM, Lyerly HK, Meropol NJ, Patel JD, Piantadosi S, Post DA, Regan MM, Shyr Y, Tempero MA, Tepper JE, Von Roenn J, Weiner LM, Young DC, Vu NV. A grant-based experiment to train clinical investigators: the AACR/ASCO methods in clinical cancer research workshop. Clin Cancer Res. e-Pub 2021. PMID: 34312215.
- Wang R, Bhattacharya R, Ye X, Fan F, Boulbes DR, Ellis LM. Endothelial Cells Promote Colorectal Cancer Cell Survival by Activating the HER3-AKT Pathway in a Paracrine Fashion. Mol Cancer Res 17(1):20-29, 2019. PMID: 30131447.
- Boulbes DR, Costello T, Baggerly K, Fan F, Wang R, Bhattacharya R, Ye X, Ellis LM. A survey on data reproducibility and the effect of publication process on the ethical reporting of laboratory research. Clin Cancer Res 24(14):3447-3455, 2018. e-Pub 2018. PMID: 29643062.
- Bhattacharya R, Fan F, Wang R, Ye X, Xia L, Boulbes D, Ellis LM. Intracrine VEGF Signaling Mediates Colorectal Cancer Cell Migration and Invasion. Br J Cancer 117(6):848-855, 2017. e-Pub 2017. PMID: 28742793.
- Wang R, Bhattacharya R, Ye X, Fan F, Boulbes DR, Xia L, Ellis LM. Endothelial cells activate the cancer stem cell-associated NANOGP8 pathway in colorectal cancer cells in a paracrine fashion. Mol Oncol 11(8):1023-1034, 2017. e-Pub 2017. PMID: 28453235.
- Ye X, Wang R, Bhattacharya R, Boulbes DR, Fan F, Xia L, Adoni H, Ajami NJ, Wong MC, Smith DP, Petrosino JF, Venable S, Qiao W, Baladandayuthapani V, Maru D, Ellis LM. Fusobacterium nucleatum subspecies animals influences pro-inflammatory cytokine expression and monocyte activation in human colorectal tumors. Cancer Prev Res (Phila) 10(7):398-409, 2017. e-Pub 2017. PMID: 28483840.
- Lu J, Ye X, Fan F, Xia L, Bhattacharya R, Bellister S, Tozzi F, Sceusi E, Zhou Y, Tachibana I, Maru DM, Hawke DH, Rak J, Mani SA, Zweidler-McKay P, Ellis LM. Endothelial Cells Promote the Colorectal Cancer Stem Cell Phenotype Through a Soluble Form of Jagged-1. Cancer Cell 23(2):171-85 (highlighted in Nature Cell Biology 15(4):351, 2013.), 2013. PMID: 23375636.
- Mobley A, Linder SK, Braeuer R, Ellis LM, Zwelling L. A survey on data reproducibility in cancer research provides insights into our limited ability to translate findings from the laboratory to the clinic. PLoS One 8(5):1-4, 2013. e-Pub 2013. PMID: 23691000.
- Zhou Y, Tozzi F, Chen J, Fan F, Xia L, Wang J, Gao G, Zhang A, Xia X, Brasher H, Widger W, Ellis LM, Weihua Z. Intracellular ATP Levels Are a Pivotal Determinant of Chemoresistance in Colon Cancer Cells. Cancer Res 72(1):304-14, 2012. e-Pub 2011. PMID: 22084398.
- Fan F, Samuel S, Evans KW, Lu J, Xia L, Zhou Y, Sceusi E, Tozzi F, Ye XC, Mani SA, Ellis LM. Overexpression of Snail induces epithelial-mesenchymal transition and a cancer stem cell-like phenotype in human colorectal cancer cells. Cancer Med 1(1):5-16, 2012. PMID: 2334229.
- Samuel S, Fan F, Dang LH, Xia L, Gaur P, Ellis LM. Intracrine Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Signaling in Survival and Chemoresistance of Human Colorectal Cancer Cells. Oncogene 30(10):1205-1212, 2011. e-Pub 2010. PMID: 21057529.
- Fan F, Samuel S, Gaur P, Lu J, Dallas NA, Xia L, Bose D, Ramachandran V, Ellis LM. Chronic exposure of colorectal cancer cells to bevacizumab promotes compensatory pathways that mediate tumour cell migration. Br J Cancer 104(8):1270-1277, 2011. e-Pub 2011. PMID: 21407219.
- Samuel S, Gaur P, Fan F, Xia L, Gray MJ, Dallas NA, Bose D, Rodriguez-Aguayo C, Lopez-Berestein G, Plowman G, Bagri A, Sood AK, Ellis LM. Neuropilin-2 Mediated β-Catenin Signaling and Survival in Human Gastro-Intestinal Cancer Cell Lines. PLoS One 6(10):1-11, 2011. PMID: 22028766.
- Bose D, Zimmerman LJ, Pierobon M, Petricoin E, Tozzi F, Parikh A, Fan F, Dallas N, Xia L, Gaur P, Samuel S, Liebler DC, Ellis LM. Chemoresistant colorectal cancer cells and cancer stem cells mediate growth and survival of bystander cells. Br J Cancer 105(11):1759-67, 2011. PMID: 22045189.
- Ellis LM. The erosion of research integrity: the need for culture change. Lancet Oncol 16(7):752-754, 2015. PMID: 26149871.
- Camp ER, Ellis LM. CCR 20th Anniversary Commentary: Ras as a biomarker for EGFR-targeted therapy for colorectal cancer: from concept to practice. Clinical Cancer Research 21(16):3578-3580, 2015. PMID: 26275951.
- Jayson GC, Hicklin DJ, Ellis LM. Antiangiogenic therapy-evolving view based on clinical trial results. Nat Rev Clin Oncol 9(5):297-303, 2012. PMID: 22330688.
- Begley CG, Ellis LM. Drug development: Raise standards for preclinical cancer research. Nature 483:531-533, 2012.
- Bose D, Meric-Bernstam F, Hofstetter W, Reardon DA, Flaherty KT, Ellis LM. Vascular endothelial growth factor targeted therapy in the perioperative setting: implications for patient care. Lancet Oncol 11(4):373-382, 2010. PMID: 20171141.
- Ellis LM, Reardon DA. Is there really a yin and yang to VEGF-targeted therapies?. The Lancet Oncol 11(9):809-11, 2010.
- Ellis LM, Fidler IJ. Finding the tumor copycat. Therapy fails, patients don't. Nat Med 16(9):974-5, 2010. PMID: 20823880.
- Ellis LM, Hicklin DJ. Resistance to targeted therapies: Refining anticancer therapy in the era of molecular oncology. Clin Cancer Res 15(24):7471-7478, 2009. PMID: 20008847.
- Overman MJ, Ellis LM, Joffe S. Ethics and the Underreporting of Research Biopsy Findings in Clinical Trials. JAMA Oncol 4(8):1041-1042, 2018. PMID: 29799989.
- Bhattacharya R, Ellis LM. It is Time to Re-evaluate the Peer Review Process for Preclinical Research. Bioessays 40(1), 2018. PMID: 29226979.
- Ellis LM, Blanke CD, Kohn EC. Words Matter: Restoring respect and dignity when referring to individuals with cancer. Cancer 123(13):2390-2391, 2017. PMID: 28182266.