Cassian Yee, M.D

Dr Yee completed his medical degree in Canada, and then an internal medicine residency at Stanford before going on to an oncology fellowship at the University of Washington. He ascended to the position of Professor at the Univ of Washington and Full Member at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. He was recently recruited to MD Anderson Cancer Center, where he is Clinical Oncologist and Professor in the Departments of Melanoma Medical Oncology and Immunology, Director of Solid Tumor Cell Therapy, and Co-Director of the Adoptive Cellular Therapy Platform. He is an elected member of the American Society of Clinical Investigators, recipient of Clinical Translational Scientist Award from Burroughs Wellcome Fund, CPRIT Clinical Investigator award, and co-Leader of the Stand Up to Cancer- American Association for Cancer Research / Cancer Research Institute Immunotherapy Dream Team.

Dr Yee’s research over the last 20 years has been focused on developing immune-based therapies for the treatment of patients with cancer. His specialty, in the area of adoptive cellular therapy, involves the isolation of rare tumor antigen-specific T cells from the peripheral blood, manipulation of immune modulating factors to enhance their effector function and in vivo persistence and, expansion to numbers sufficient for adoptive transfer. His lab has performed several first-in-man studies using a well-defined, uniform population of ex vivo expanded antigen-specific T cells to delineate the requirements for effective immune-based therapies with the goal of: 1) increasing the availability of adoptive T cell therapy as a treatment modality for greater numbers of patients and broader panel of cancers and 2) developing combinational strategies that will enhance the persistence and anti-tumor efficacy of adoptively transferred T cells. His work converges multidisciplinary approaches in bioengineering, metabolism, molecular immunology and cellular biology to develop effective immunotherapy strategies and adoptive cellular therapy, in particular, as a treatment modality for patients with malignant diseases.