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2015 Featured Talks » Melanoma Patients Path: Translations to the Clinic

Melanoma Patients Path: Translations to the Clinic

Gregory Daniels, MD
UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center

Part One

Part Two

Gregory Daniels, MD
Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, Division of Hematology Oncology
UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center

The incidence of melanoma has steadily increased over the last decade, affecting more than 1 in 35 individuals in their lifetime. Most of these lesions are cured by excision. Unfortunately, those patients with disease that has spread to lymph nodes or distant sites have very few effective therapeutic options.

Dr. Daniels focuses on offering effective standard therapies and experimental protocols of promising new options for patients with malignant melanomas. High-dose interleukin 2 is the only FDA-approved treatment for melanoma, showing an appreciable long-term survival advantage for select patients with metastatic disease. Dr. Daniels offers therapy with high-dose interleukin 2, and leads the Cancer Center’s efforts in offering clinical protocols that target pathways controlling cell growth, as well as immune-based treatments. His research interest has focused upon understanding the link between autoimmunity and tumor immunity. His laboratory work has shown that one can break immunologic tolerance to normal tissue, leading to protective immunity that is effective against tumors.

Currently, his research centers upon creating a therapeutic cancer vaccine in melanoma and GU tumors through in situ manipulation of existing tumors. Utilizing intratumoral injection of small molecules developed at the Moores UCSD Cancer Center, combined with local hyperthermia and cell death, Daniels hopes to create a vaccine system that is of low toxicity and relatively simple to apply in a variety of clinical settings.