Ronny I. Drapkin, M.D., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Pathology, Harvard Medical School
Associate Pathologist, Pathology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital
Principal Investigator, Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Ronny Drapkin, M.D, PhD is an Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School, an Associate Pathologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and a Principle Investigator at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Dr. Drapkin received his B.A. in Biochemistry from Brandeis University in 1990 and his M.D. and Ph.D. from the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in 1998. He completed his residency in Anatomic Pathology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in 2001 and a postdoctoral fellowship at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in 2006. He joined the faculty at Harvard in 2006. Dr. Drapkin serves on the editorial boards of Clinical Cancer Research and Gynecologic Oncology and his laboratory is funded by NIH/NCI grants, foundations and philanthropic gifts.
Research in the Drapkin laboratory focuses on developing a comprehensive understanding of cancer pathogenesis, DNA repair mechanisms, and genomics of women’s cancers with a special focus on ovarian carcinomas. The ultimate goal is to translate important principles discovered in the laboratory into clinical useful diagnostic and therapeutic tools.
Recent work from the Drapkin lab has established that the fallopian tube (FT) secretory cell is the likely cell-of-origin for a majority of high-grade serous ovarian carcinomas, the most common and clinically aggressive subtype of this disease. This new concept for serous tumorigenesis has led Dr. Drapkin’s group to develop a number of novel experimental model systems, including the ex-vivo bioanalytical platform of benign FT epithelium, the in-vitro FT secretory cell transformation model, and a genetically-engineered mouse model that targets the FT epithelium. In addition, they have generated a series of patient-derived tumor xenograft (‘avatar’) models that retain the phenotypic and genotypic properties of the original patient tumors. By integrating findings from genomic studies into these model systems, the Drapkin lab aims to define key factors that can lead to new therapeutic approaches and methods of early detection.