2008 & 2004 Liz Tilberis Grant Recipient – Ronald Buckanovich

Ronald Buckanovich, M.D., Ph.D.
University of Pennsylvania
Tumor Blood Vessels in Ovarian Cancer Development, Diagnosis and for Treatment

Project Summary

Tumor blood vessels are different than normal blood vessels. Besides functioning differently than normal blood vessels, tumor blood vessels make unique proteins not made by normal blood vessels. With OCRF support, Dr. Buckanovich has identified more than 70 tumor vascular (or blood vessel) markers (TVMs) associated with ovarian cancer. In his study, Dr. Buckanovich plans to research how these TVMs could be possible targets for new drugs to treat ovarian cancer. Antibodies against the TVMs, for example, could stop the growth of blood vessels that support tumor growth and hence stop disease progression. He also will study if TVMs could be used for early detection and monitoring disease progression because TVMs are found in the blood. Finally, understanding the role TVMs play in supporting the growth of cancer stem cells, a population of cancer cells that keeps a tumor growing, could also lead to new treatments that prevent the process.

Bio

Ronald J. Buckanovich is an Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine and Obstetrics and Gynecology. Trained as a medical oncologist, Dr Buckanovich’s clinical effort is focused on the treatment of patients with gynecologic malignancies with an emphasis on ovarian and uterine cancers. In addition, Dr. Buckanovich runs a research laboratory dedicated to the development of novel diagnostic tools and new molecular therapeutics for ovarian cancer. He obtained his medical degree from Cornell University Medical College and a PhD in Molecular Oncology at the Rockefeller University. He performed residency training in Internal Medicine and fellowship training in Hematology and Oncology at the University of Pennsylvania. After serving as faculty at the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Buckanovich initiated his laboratory program at the University of Michigan. His studies supported by the OCRF were recognized with the “Outstanding Basic Science Research” award from the Society of Gynecologic Oncologist in 2006. Dr. Buckanovich is currently a member of the gynecologic oncology group, the Southwest oncology group, & Society of gynecologic oncologist.

This grant is partially funded by a generous grant from the estate of Carol F. Bleeker.