Cancer Therapeutics & Host Response (CTHR)


The mission of the Cancer Therapeutics and Host Response (CTHR) program is to define mechanisms regulating host responses to tumor progression and advance novel therapeutic treatments for patients with cancer.


  • Interrogate the interplay between microorganisms and host immune cells in tumor response and resistance to standard and experimental therapies

  • Conduct first-in-human therapeutic clinical trials for refractory malignancies

  • Advance novel therapeutics targeting host or microbiota activities through a preclinical to clinical development pathway

  • Promote interactive research

Program Co-Leaders

Christian Jobin, Ph.D.

Christian Jobin, Ph.D., is a tenured professor of medicine in the University of Florida College of Medicines’ division of gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition. He has a dual appointment with the department of infectious diseases and pathology at UF and the UF College of Veterinary Medicine.

Dr. Jobin received his Ph.D. in immunology-microbiology from Laval University in Quebec and completed his fellowship at Hôspital Saint-François d’Assise, Laval University.

Dr. Jobin is interested in bacteria/host interactions and ensuring innate/immunological responses during health and diseases. He studies the differential contribution of bacteria in protecting or exacerbating development of colitis and colorectal cancer. Dr. Jobin has contributed to the understanding of the cellular and molecular mechanism regulating host response to bacterial colonization, and has published numerous papers on innate signaling events taking place in the intestine and how these impact intestinal homeostasis. Click here for information on Dr. Jobin’s  research lab.

He is a member of several professional societies, including the American Gastroenterological Association, the Mucosal Immunology Association, the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and the American Association of Immunologists.

Duane A. Mitchell, M.D., Ph.D.

Duane A. Mitchell, M.D., Ph.D., is the Phyllis Kottler Friedman professor in the department of neurosurgery at UF and the State of Florida Endowed Cancer Research Chair at the UF College of Medicine. He also serves as co-director of the Preston A. Wells Jr. Center for Brain Tumor Therapy and director of the UF Brain Tumor Immunotherapy Program.

In 2013, Dr. Mitchell joined the University of Florida faculty and leads a comprehensive brain tumor program focused on translational research. He has considerable clinical and translational research experience having served as principal investigator on seven first-in-human protocols through FDA-approved clinical trials. The goal of these trials is to see improvements in patient outcomes using novel approaches that stimulate immune responses against malignant brain tumor cells in combination with current standard treatments. Dr. Mitchell’s research team will expand upon early successes observed in these personalized cancer treatment approaches, and offer unique clinical options at UF for adult and pediatric patients diagnosed with malignant brain tumors.

Dr. Mitchell currently serves as a chartered member of the NIH study section on Cancer Immunopathology and Immunotherapy, Chair of the NCI Pediatric Brain Tumor Consortium Immunotherapy Committee, member of the NCI Brain Malignancy Steering Committee Immunotherapy Working Group, and as gubernatorial appointee to the Florida Center for Brain Tumor Research Scientific Advisory Council. His work is supported by the Department of Defense, the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute of Neurologic Diseases and Stroke, and several private funding agencies.

 Program Members

Last NameTitleDepartmentCollegeResearch Interest Topics
Allegra, Carmen, MDProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineCell Signaling Pathways; Chemotherapy; Drug Design; Drug Resistance; Gastro-Intestinal; Immunotherapy; Targeted Cancer Therapy.
Amdur, Robert J., MDAssociate ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineBrain Tumors; Head and Neck Cancer; Skin Cancer; Thyroid Cancer.
Avram, Dorina, PhDProfessorPulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep MedicineMedicineEpigenetic & Transcriptional Control in Immune Regulation; Hect Ubiquitin Ligases and Cellular Transformation in Colorectal Carcinoma.
Bradley, Julie A., MDAssistant ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicine
Brown, Randy A., BS, MDClinical ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineLeukemia
Bruner, Steven D., PhDAssociate ProfessorChemistryLiberal Arts & Sciences
Cabrera, Roniel, MD, MSAssociate ProfessorGastroenterology, Hepatology & NutritionMedicineAngiogenesis; Apoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Cell Signaling Pathways; Epigenetics & Cancer; Immunoregulation & Suppression; Immunotherapy; Liver; Targeted Cancer Therapy; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions.
Castellano, Ronald K., PhDAssociate ProfessorChemistryLiberal Arts & SciencesBreast; Drug Design; Drug Resistance; Chemotherapy.
Castillo Caro, Paul A., MDClinical Assistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicine
Chang, Lung-Ji, PhDProfessorMolecular Genetics & MicrobiologyMedicineApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Bioinformatics; Bone & Soft Tissue Sarcomas; Breast; Cancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; Chemotherapy; Epigenetics & Cancer; Gastro-Intestinal; Genetic Determinants of Cancer; Head & Neck; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Immunotherapy; Infection Control; Lymphoma; Nanotechnology; Neuro-Oncology; Radiation Oncology; Skin/Melanoma; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions
Close, Julia L., MDClinical Assistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineEducation
Cogle, Christopher R., MDAssociate ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineBioinformatics; Cancer Genetics; Epidemiology; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Leukemia; Oncolytic Viral Vectors; RNA Processing; Stem Cell; Targeted Cancer Therapy; Vascular Targeting.
Curtiss, Roy, PhDProfessorInfectious Diseases & PathologyVeterinary Medicine
Dagan, Roi, MDClinical Assistant ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineEye; Head & Neck; Metastasis; Radiation Oncology.
Daily Weinstein, Karen, DOClinical Assistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineBreast; Gynecological; Cancer Genetics; Cancer Prevention; Chemotherapy; Endocrine; Health Disparities.
Dang, Long H., MD, PhDAssociate ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineAngiogenesis; Cell Signaling Pathways; Chemotherapy; Drug Design; Drug Resistance; Gastro-Intestinal; Gene Therapy; Metastasis; Targeted Cancer Therapy; Vascular Targeting
Dang, Nam H., MD, PhDProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineImmunotherapy; Lymphoma; Targeted Cancer Therapy
Devidas, Meenakshi, PhDResearch ProfessorBiostatisticsPublic Health & Health ProfessionsCancer Genetics; Genetic Determinants of Cancer; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow transplant; Targeted Cancer Therapy; Biostatistics; Bone & Soft Tissue Sarcomas; Pediatric Oncology
Fan, Z. Hugh, PhDProfessorMechanical & Aerospace EngineeringEngineeringChemotherapy; Gastro-Intestinal; Immunotherapy; Metastasis; Nanotechnology.
Flores, Catherine, PhDAssistant ProfessorNeurosurgeryMedicine
Fort, John, MDClinical Associate ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicine
Friedman, William A., MDProfessorNeurosurgeryMedicine
George, Thomas J., MS, MDAssociate ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineCancer genetics; Chemotherapy; DNA Damage & Repair; Drug Resistance; Gastro-Intestinal; Genetic Determinants of Cancer; Health Disparities; Immunotherapy; Metastasis; Targeted Cancer Therapy.
Gharaibeh, Raad Z., PhDResearch Assistant ProfessorGastroenterologyMedicineBioinformatics
Ghivizzani, Steven C., PhDProfessorOrthopaedics & RehabilitationMedicineApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Bone & Soft Tissue Sarcomas; Cancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; DNA Damage & Repair; Environment; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Gene Therapy; Genetic Determinants of Cancer; Metastasis; Pediatric Oncology; Senescence; Stem Cell; Targeted Cancer Therapy
Gibbs, C. Parker, MDProfessorOrthopaedics & RehabilitationMedicineBone & Soft Tissue Sarcomas; Epigenetics & Cancer; Stem Cell; Surgical Oncology
Golde, Todd E., MD, PhDProfessorTranslational Research in Neurodegenerative DiseaseMedicine
Gopalan, Priya K, MD, PhDClinical Assistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineAngiogenesis; Lung; Metastasis; Targeted Cancer Therapy; Thoracic Oncology; Vascular Targeting
Guo, Zhongwu, PharmD, PhD, PDFProfessorChemistryLiberal Arts & Sciences
Gururangan, Sridharan, FRCPProfessorNeurosurgeryMedicineCancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; Chemotherapy; Drug Design; Immunotherapy; Neuro-Oncology; Targeted Cancer Therapy.
Harrison, Jeffrey K., PhDProfessorPharmacology & TherapeuticsMedicineCell Signaling Pathways; Immunoregulation & Suppression; Immunotherapy; Neuro-Oncology; Targeted Cancer Therapy; Tumor Microenvironment.
Heldermon, Coy, MD, PhDAssistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicine Breast; Cancer Genetics; Gene Therapy; Immunoregulation & Suppression; Nanotechnology; Nutrition, Dietary Supplements & Cancer; Metastasis; Oncolytic Viral Vectors; Stem Cell; Targeted Cancer Therapy
Henderson, Randal H., MDClinical ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicine
Herzog, Roland W., PhDProfessorPediatric ResearchMedicine
Hiemenz, John W., MDClinical ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicine
Hoppe, Bradford S. MD, MPHAssociate ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineImmunoregulation & Suppression; Lung; Lymphoma; Metastasis; Pediatric Oncology.
Horn, Biljana, PhDClinical ProfessorPediatric HematologyMedicine
Hsu, Jack W., MDClinical Assistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicine
Huh, Soon Nyung, PhDClinical Associate ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicine
Indelicato, Daniel J., MDAssociate ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineBone & Soft Tissue Sarcomas; Neuro-Oncology; Pediatric Oncology; Radiation Oncology; Survivorship.
James, Margaret O., PhD, DScProfessorMedicinal ChemistryPharmacyChemotherapy; Drug Design; Drug Resistance; Endocrine
Jobin, Christian, PhDProfessorGastroenterology, Hepatology & NutritionMedicine
Jones, Dennie V., MDProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineCancer Prevention; Chemotherapy; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Gastro-Intestinal; Lung
Lagmay, Joanne, MDClinical Assistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineBone & Soft Tissue Sarcomas; Immunotherapy; Palliative Medicine; Pediatric Oncology.
Lamba, Jatinder K., PhDAssociate ProfessorPharmacotherapy & Translational ResearchPharmacyCancer Genetics; Chemotherapy; Epigenetics & Cancer; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Leukemia; Pediatric Oncology
Law, Brian K., PhDAssociate ProfessorPharmacology & TherapeuticsMedicineBreast; Cancer Genetics; Cancer Prevention; Cell Signaling Pathways; DNA Damage & Repair; Drug Design; Genetic Determinants of Cancer
Li, Ying, MD, PhDClinical ProfessorPathologyMedicineAcute Leukemia; Biomarkers of Lymphoma; Myelodysplastic Syndrome.
Li, Zoufeng, DScClinical ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineBioinformatics; Radiation Oncology
Liang, Faming, PhDProfessorBiostatisticsPublic Health & Health ProfessionsBioinformatics; Cancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; Environment; Epigenetics & Cancer; Epigenetics & Gene Regulation; Genetic Determinants of Cancer
Luesch, Hendrik, PhDProfessorMedicinal ChemistryPharmacy Cancer Prevention; Chemotherapy; Drug Design; Nutrition, Dietary Supplements & Cancer; Targeted Cancer Therapy.
Mai, Volker, PhD, MPHAssociate ProfessorEpidemiologyPublic Health & Health Professions Cancer Prevention; Epidemiology; Epigenetics & Cancer; Gastro-Intestinal; Nutrition, Dietary Supplements & Cancer
Markham, Merry Jennifer, MDClinical Associate ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineCancer Survivorship; Gynecological; Lymphoma; Quality of Cancer Care; Quality of Life Issues
May, W. Stratford, MD, PhDProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Cell Signaling Pathways; DNA Damage & Repair; Drug Design; Lymphoma
Mendenhall, Nancy P., MDProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineBreast; Cancer Information; Cancer Surveillance; Cancer Survivorship; Gastro-intestinal; Genital-Urinary/Prostate; Pediatric Oncology; Radiation Oncology; Targeted Cancer Therapy.
Mendenhall, William M., MDProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineGastrointestinal; Head & Neck Cancer; Proton Beam; Prostate Cancer; Radiotherapy; Skin/Melanoma; Skull Base.
Milner, Rowan J., BCVSc, MMedVetProfessorSmall Animal Clinical SciencesVeterinary Medicine
Mitchell, Duane A., MD, PhDAssociate ProfessorNeurosurgeryMedicineImmunoregulation & Suppression; Immunotherapy; Nanotechnology; Neuro-Oncology; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions
Mohamadzadeh, Mansour, PhDProfessorInfectious Diseases & PathologyVeterinary MedicineBreast; Cancer Genetics; Cancer Prevention; Immunotherapy
Moreb, Jan S., MDProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineDrug Resistance; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Immunotherapy; Stem Cell; Multiple Myeloma.
Murad, Gregory J.A., MDClinical Associate ProfessorNeurosurgeryMedicineNeuro-Oncology
Murthy, Hemant S., MDAssistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineHematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Immunotherapy; Lymphoma; Palliative Medicine; Quality of Life Issues; Stem Cell; Targeted Cancer Therapy.
Muzyczka, Nicholas, PhDEminent ScholarMolecular Genetics & MicrobiologyMedicineCancer Genetics; DNA Damage & Repair; Gene Therapy; Targeted Cancer Therapy; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions
Najmunnisa, Nasreen, PhDResearch Assistant ProfessorPulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep MedicineMedicineApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Breast; Cell Signaling Pathways; DNA Damage & Repair; Epigenetics & Cancer; Immunotherapy; Lung; MicroRNAs; Nanotechnology; Targeted Cancer Therapy
Naranjo, Arlene, PhDResearch Assistant ProfessorBiostatisticsPublic Health & Health ProfessionsBiostatistics; Cancer Genetics; Cancer Information; Cancer Prevention; Cancer Survivorship; Chemotherapy; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Pediatric Oncology;
Nichols, Romaine C., MDClinical Associate ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineGastro-Intestinal; Genital-Urinary/Prostate; Gynecological; Lung; Radiation Oncology
Norkin, Maxim, MD, PhDClinical Assistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineDrug Resistance; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Immunotherapy; Leukemia; Stem Cell
Okunieff, Paul, MDProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineAngiogenesis; Apoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Breast; DNA Damage & Repair; Drug Design; Health Disparities; Liver; Metastasis; Radiation Oncology; Targeted Cancer Therapy;
Ostrov, David A., PhDAssociate ProfessorPathologyMedicineChemotherapy; Drug Design; Immunotherapy; Tumor Virology/Virus-Host Interactions
Parekh, Hiral D., MD, MPHAssistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineGastro-Intestinal
Polfer, Nicolas C., PhDAssociate ProfessorChemistryLiberal Arts & SciencesBioinformatics; Biostatistics; Cell Signaling Pathways
Rahman, Maryam, MDAssistant ProfessorNeurosurgeryMedicineCancer Genetics; Chemotherapy; Drug Resistance; Health Care Disparities; Immunotherapy; Neuro-Oncology; Stem Cells; Surgical Oncology; Targeted Cancer Therapy
Reynolds, Brent, PhDAssociate ProfessorNeurosurgeryMedicineBreast; Cancer; Chemotherapy; Drug Resistance; Neuro-Oncology; Stem Cell & Nutrition Dietary Supplements
Rice, Lori P., PhDResearch Assistant ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicine Breast; Cancer Prevention; Cell Signaling Pathways; Genetic Determinants of Cancer; Genital-Urinary/Prostate; Metastasis; Nutrition, Dietary Supplements & Cancer; Radiation Oncology; Vascular Targeting
Rinaldi, Carlos, PhDProfessorChemical EngineeringEngineeringApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Breast; Cell Signaling Pathways; DNA Damage & Repair; Drug Resistance; Environment; Gene Therapy; Genital-Urinary/Prostate; Head & Neck; Metastasis; Nanotechnology; Radiation Oncology; Targeted Cancer Therapy
Sarkisian, Matthew R., PhDAssistant ProfessorNeuroscienceMedicineNeuro-Oncology
Sawyer, W. Gregory, PhDProfessorMechanical & Aerospace EngineeringEngineeringApoptosis and Cell Death Pathways; Cell Signaling Pathways; Immunotherapy; Nanotechnology; Pediatric Oncology; Skin/Melanoma; Targeted Cancer Therapy.
Sayour, Elias J., MDAssistant ProfessorNeurosurgeryMedicineImmunotherapy; Nanotechnology; Pediatric Oncology; Neuro-Oncology.
Scarborough, Mark T., MDProfessorOrthopaedics & RehabilitationMedicineBone & Soft Tissue Sarcomas; Surgical Oncology.
Schmittgen, Thomas, PhDProfessorPharmaceuticsPharmacyCancer Genetics; Drug Design; Gastro-Intestinal; Head & Neck; Health Disparities; Liver; MicroRNAs; Nanotechnology
Scott, Edward W., PhDProfessorMolecular Genetics & MicrobiologyMedicine
Sharma, Blanka, PhDAssistant ProfessorBiomedical EngineeringEngineeringBone & Soft Tissue Sarcomas; Breast; Gene Therapy; Metastasis; Nanotechnology; Plastic Surgery/Reconstruction; Stem Cell; Targeted Cancer Therapy
Siemann, Dietmar W., PhDProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineBreast; Cell Signaling Pathways; Chemotherapy; Drug Design; Environment; Genital-Urinary/Prostate; Metastasis; Radiation Oncology; Stem Cell; Targeted Cancer Therapy.
Slayton, William B., MDAssociate ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineDNA Damage & Repair; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Leukemia; Pediatric Oncology; Vascular Targeting; Quality Improvement.
Slopsema, Roelf L., MScClinical Associate ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineEye; Radiation Oncology
Spiguel, Lisa, MDClinical Assistant ProfessorSurgeryMedicine
Staal, Stephen, MDClinical ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicine Breast; Cell Signaling Pathways; Chemotherapy; Drug Design; Nutrition, Dietary Supplements & Cancer
Starr, Jason S., DOClinical Assistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineDNA Damage & Repair; Gastro-Intestinal; Immunotherapy; Palliative Medicine; Targeted Cancer Therapy
Stechmiller, Bruce K., MDClinical Associate ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicineGastro-Intestinal; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Kidney; Lung; Lymphoma; Skin/Melanoma; Targeted Cancer Therapy
Su, Zhong, PhDClinical Associate ProfessorRadiation OncologyMedicineRadiation Oncology
Tan, Weihong, PhDDistinguished ProfessorChemistryLiberal Arts & SciencesApoptosis & Cell Death Pathways; Chemical Biology; Cancer Diagnosis; Targeted Therapy; Cancer Information; Cancer Surveillance; Immunotherapy; Nanotechnology; Nanomedicine.
Thomas, Ryan M., MDAssistant ProfessorGeneral SurgeryMedicineCancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; Drug Resistance; Surgical Oncology
Tran, David D., MD, PhDAssistant ProfessorNeurosurgeryMedicineBreast; Cancer Genetics; Cell Signaling Pathways; Metastasis; Neuro-Oncology; Stem Cell
Vulpe, Christpher D., MD, PhDProfessorPhysiological SciencesVeterinary Medicine
Williamson, Elizabeth, BSc, PhDResearch Associate ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicine
Wingard, John R., MDDeputy Director of Research, Program DirectorHematology & OncologyMedicineCancer Survivorship; Hematologic Malignancies/Blood & Marrow Transplant; Immunotherapy; Infection Control; Leukemia; Quality of Life Issues
Wynn, Tung T., MDClinical Assistant ProfessorHematology & OncologyMedicine Cancer Survivorship; Health Disparities; Integrative Medicine; Nutrition, Dietary Supplements & Cancer; Pediatric Oncology; Thyroid.
Xing, Chengguo (Chris), PhDProfessorMedicinal ChemistryPharmacy Cancer Prevention; Cell Signaling Pathways; Drug Resistance; Head & Neck; Health Disparities; Leukemia; Lung; Neuro-Oncology; Nutrition, Dietary Supplements & Cancer
Zhou, Liang, MD, PhDAssociate ProfessorInfectious Diseases & PathologyVeterinary MedicineEpigenetics & Gene Regulation; Gastro-Intestinal; Infection Control; Immunoregulation & Suppression