Scientific Advisors

Carol L. Shields, MD

Carol L. Shields practices ocular oncology at and is currently Co-Director of the Oncology Service at Wills Eye Hospital. She is also a Professor of Ophthalmology at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. She previously was the first elected President of the International Society of Ocular Oncology, the largest international society of clinicians and basic scientists interested in ocular tumors. Carol completed her residency in ophthalmology at Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia and subsequently did fellowship training in Ocular Oncology, Oculoplastic Surgery and Ophthalmic Pathology.

She has authored or co-authored 12 textbooks, over 1400 articles in major journals and over 300 textbook chapters as well as given over 700 lectureships. Carol has received numerous professional awards, including the Donders Award in 2003, given by the Netherlands Ophthalmological Society; an Honorary Doctorate of Science Degree each from the University of Notre Dame in 2005 and the Catholic University in 2011; and the American Academy of Ophthalmology Life Achievement Honor Award in 2011. Carol is also a member of numerous ocular oncology, pathology and retina societies and has delivered more than 35 named lectures in America and abroad. She has been active in the American Academy of Ophthalmology and serves on the editorial board of several journals, including Retina, Journal of Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus, Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, and International Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Evangelos Gragoudas, MD

Evangelos Gragoudas is a leading clinician-researcher and has spent over 25 years investigating treatments for intraocular tumors and macular disorders. He has been the Director of Retina Service at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary since 1985. Evangelos is considered a world authority on the diagnosis and management of ocular tumors and is world-renowned for his groundbreaking work in the use of proton irradiation to treat intraocular melanoma. He and his colleagues pioneered the development of photodynamic therapy for neovascular age-related macular degeneration. Evangelos has published over 200 articles in peer-reviewed journals and written or authored more than 100 chapters, reviews and books; he lectures nationally and internationally. He completed his medical training in Athens, Greece, and his ophthalmology residency at Boston University School of Medicine.

Evangelos is the recipient of several major awards and honors, including the esteemed Mildred Weisenfeld Award for Excellence in Ophthalmology from the Associate for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology for his invaluable contributions to the field of ocular oncology and the development of vascular-targeting therapies from numerous eye disorders.

Arun D. Singh

Arun D. Singh is the Director of the Department of Ophthalmic Oncology in the Cole Eye Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. He has specialty interests in ophthalmic tumors in adults and children, with research interests in uveal melanoma, the genetics of retinoblastoma, retinal capillary hemangioma and von Hippel-Lindau disease. Arun completed fellowships in Ophthalmology at Watford General Hospital in the United Kingdom and in Ocular Oncology at Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia. He earned his BS at the University of Madras in Nadu, India, and his M.D. at the Jawaharlal Institute of Post Graduate Medical Education and Research in Pondicherry, India.

He is Fellow of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists, London, and the American Board of Ophthalmology. Arun has published more than 300 scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals and has edited several textbooks. He is Editor of Ocular Oncology and Pathology. Arun has earned an Achievement Award from the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

Jay S. Duker, MD

Jay S. Duker, M.D., is the Director of the New England Eye Center (NEEC), one of the largest academic, multi-specialty ophthalmology practices in the United States, and Professor and Chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology at Tufts Medical Center and the Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston. Jay received his medical degree magna cum laude from Jefferson Medical College. He completed both his ophthalmology residency and his two year fellowship in vitreo-retinal diseases at the Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia. His clinical practice is limited to medical and surgical diseases of the posterior segment with particular emphasis on macular diseases, posterior uveitis and intraocular tumors.

He has published over 200 journal articles, with his major research interests, which include retinal imaging and in particular, optical coherence tomography (OCT), retinal vascular diseases and drug delivery to the posterior segment. His book, Yanoff and Duker’s Ophthalmology, is one of the best-selling ophthalmic texts over the past decade. Jay is the editor-in-chief of the International Journal of Retina and Vitreous (IJRV) and serves on the editorial board of OSLI Retina and IOVS. Jay is the co-founder of three companies, including Hemera Biosciences, a biotech start-up whose focus is a gene-therapy-based treatment for age-related macular degeneration. He is also a Director of Eleven Biotherapeutics, a publicly traded clinical-stage protein engineering company.

Brian Marr, MD

Brian Marr has 14 years of experience in ocular oncology and is currently Director of the Ophthalmic Oncology service at Columbia University Medical Center. Additionally, Brian is a member of the ophthalmic oncology team at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. He previously served as Assistant Attending Surgeon and Associate Attending Surgeon at Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia. Before that, he served as Clinical Assistant Surgeon at Albert Einstein Medical Center. Brian received his BS in Biology from Albright College and his M.D. from Temple University Medical School. Brian completed his postdoctoral training at Crozer-Chester Medical Center and New York Eye and Ear Infirmary, as well as a fellowship at Wills Eye Hospital.

Brian has been twice recognized as a “Top Doctor” by New York Magazine. He has authored nearly 100 peer-reviewed publications and manuscripts.

Richard Carvajal, MD

Richard Carvajal is the Director of the Developmental Therapeutics program at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, part of the Melanoma and Sarcoma Service, and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College. He is focused on the development of novel therapies for patients with various cancers, with the overall objective of controlling and curing these diseases. In an advance that helped to launch a new era of personalized medicine in melanoma therapy, Richard led a clinical trial of imatinib (Gleevec®) in patients with melanoma characterized by the presence of a mutation in a gene called KIT. Moreover, before 2013, there were no effective treatments for metastatic uveal melanoma; another trial that Richard developed and conducted identified selumetinib, a medicine that blocks the MAPK pathway, as the first effective treatment for patients with advanced uveal melanoma. His research has been supported by the NCI, the FDA, the Conquer Cancer Foundation, the Melanoma Research Alliance, the Melanoma Research Foundation, the Empire Clinical Research Investigator Program, and the generous philanthropic support of patients and their families. He has also authored or co-authored more than 50 peer-reviewed manuscripts, books and book chapters. Richard completed fellowships in Hematology/Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and in Medicine at Weill Medical College of Cornell University. He earned his M.D. at the NYU School of Medicine.

Richard serves as the Co-Chair of the International Rare Cancer Initiative Uveal Melanoma working group, a joint initiative of the NCI, the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer, and Cancer Research UK to enhance international collaboration in the conduct of clinical trials for uveal melanoma.

Andrea Apolo, MD

Dr. Apolo is an internationally recognized expert in bladder cancer research who is a Lasker Clinical Research Scholar in the Genitourinary Malignancies Branch of the Cancer Research Center at the NCI, NIH. She is Head of the Bladder Cancer Section and the Director of the Bladder Cancer and Genitourinary Tumors Multidisciplinary Clinic. She holds an MD degree from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, completed her internal medicine residency at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center and a medical oncology fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering, all in New York.

Max Kates, MD

Dr. Max Kates is the Director of the Division of Urologic Oncology and an Associate Professor of Urology and Oncology in the Brady Urological Institute at Johns Hopkins. Dr. Kates received his undergraduate degree from Wesleyan University in Connecticut and his medical degree from Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. He then went on to train at Johns Hopkins for his urologic residency and Society of Urologic Oncology (SUO) fellowship.

Dr. Kates has expertise in all areas of urologic oncology, including prostate, bladder, kidney, testicular, and genital cancers.

As the clinical director of the bladder cancer multidisciplinary clinic, Dr. Kates works with the team at the Johns Hopkins Greenberg Bladder Cancer Institute to deliver a personalized approach to bladder cancer utilizing cutting edge precision medicine approaches.

Dr. Kates’ research interest parallel his clinical practice, with an emphasis on novel treatments for cancers of the urinary tract. He has a particular interest in developing novel therapies for bladder cancer, and currently has a provisional patent for a novel intravesical chemotherapy he developed with nano-engineer collaborators. Additionally, Dr. Kates has made important discoveries into the mechanism of action of intravesical BCG, the most common treatment for bladder cancer.

Dr. Kates has authored more than 70 journal articles in the fields of bladder, prostate, and kidney cancer. He has won numerous awards, including the American Urologic Association (AUA) Russell Scott Award, best poster awards from the society of urologic oncology and AUA, and best reviewer from the journal Urologic Oncology.

Isaac Kim, MD, PhD, MBA

Dr. Kim is a board certified urologist who serves as the Chief and Associate Professor of the Division of Urology at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and Chief of the Section of Urologic Oncology and director of the Prostate Cancer Center at the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. He runs a thriving clinical practice and has established a robust research program focused on the biology of castration-resistant prostate cancer. He holds a PhD and MD from Northwestern University, completed a urology residency at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, a research fellowship in Urologic Oncology at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda and clinical fellowship in endourology, laparoscopy and robotics at the University of California in Irvine.

Seth P. Lerner, MD

Dr. Lerner is Professor of Urology and holds the Beth and Dave Swalm Chair in Urologic Oncology, in the Scott Department of Urology, Baylor College of Medicine. He is Director of Urologic Oncology and the Multidisciplinary Bladder Cancer Program and Vice-chair for Faculty Affairs for Urology. His clinical practice, education, and research activities are devoted to urologic oncology and particularly lower and upper tract urothelial cancer. He holds an MD from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and completed a two-year fellowship at the University of Southern California in urologic oncology and reconstructive surgery in Los Angeles.