Oncology Research and Development Postdoctoral Program

Kenneth Geles, Ph.D.
Associate Research Fellow
Member, WRD Postdoctoral Program Governance Team


Undergraduate: B.S. Biology, Millersville University
Graduate: Ph.D. Cancer Biology, Northwestern University
Postdoctoral training: University of California, Berkeley (Fellowship from the American Cancer Society)

Research Interests:

My research focuses on understanding how the microenvironment modulates cell plasticity and key developmental signaling pathways to establish aberrant tumor cell hierarchies and architectures. Our goal is to identify and characterize tumor-initiating cells using in vivo PDX models, primary co-cultures (epithelial/stromal cell) and 3-dimensional organoid/spheroid assays. We plan to apply this knowledge to the development of the next generation of targeted cancer therapies.

Selected Publications

Geles KG, Zhong W, O'Brien SK, et al. Upregulation of RNA processing factors in poorly differentiated lung cancer cells. Transl Oncol. (2016).

Sapra P, Damelin M, DiJoseph J, et al.  Long-term tumor regression induced by an antibody-drug conjugate that targets 5T4, an oncofetal antigen expressed on tumor-initiating cells.  Mol Cancer Ther, 12, 38-47 (2013). 

Damelin* M, Geles* KG, Follettie MT, et al. Delineation of a cellular hierarchy in lung cancer reveals an oncofetal antigen expressed on tumor-initiating cellsCancer Res, 71, 4236-4246 (2011). (*Co-first authors).

Zhou BB , Zhang H, Damelin M, Geles KG, et al. Tumor-initiating cells: challenges and opportunities for anticancer drug discovery. Nature Reviews Drug Discovery, 8, 806-823 (2009).

Hu P, Geles KG, Paik JH, et al. Codependent activators direct myoblast-specific MyoD transcription. Developmental Cell 15, 534-546 (2008).