The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute CIMAC is a central hub of translational immuno-oncology research. It is uniquely positioned as a disease-agnostic center that brings together local and national researchers and clinicians across tumor types to identify biomarkers of clinical relevance and to develop novel immuno-oncology treatments. Dedicated biomarker laboratories provide cutting-edge knowledge and expertise in analysis of immune correlatives for immuno-oncology trials spanning tissue (IHC and multiplex immunofluorescence), peripheral blood (CyTOF), and immuno-genomics (RNAseq, WES, ctDNA, TCR sequencing).

Access to Dana Farber’s sample tracking system and pathology services helps support advanced computational methods and enables large-scale integrative data analysis.  Using cutting-edge technology developed by the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, the CIMAC can extract biologic information from patient material using high-throughput DNA/RNA sequencing and highly multiplexed biological assays.

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute logo

Principal investigators

Photo of Catherine J. Wu, MD

Catherine J. Wu, MD

Chief, Division of Stem Cell Transplantation and Cellular Therapies

Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Wu received her MD from Stanford University School of Medicine in 1994. She completed postgraduate training in internal medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital, followed by a fellowship in medical oncology and hematology at Dana-Farber/Partners CancerCare. In 2000, she joined the faculty at Dana-Farber Cancer Center, where she leads the Division of Stem Cell Transplantation and Cellular Therapies. Her research interests include the identification of targets of the immune response associated with therapies and dissecting the basis of effective human antitumor responses.

Dr. Wu is an internationally recognized leader in the pathobiology of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and in the development of personalized neoantigen vaccines. A major priority of her studies is the identification of tumor-specific antigens using exome and transcriptome sequencing. Dr. Wu has been a principal investigator of several clinical trials, including trials of the NeoVax/BioNTech personalized antigen vaccines.

Photo of Stephen Hodi, MD

Stephen Hodi, MD

Director, Melanoma Center and Center for Immuno-Oncology, Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center

Professor of Medicine and Sharon Crowley Martin Chair in Melanoma, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Hodi received his MD degree from Cornell University Medical College in 1992, completed postdoctoral training in internal medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and medical oncology training at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where he joined the faculty in 1995. His research focuses on gene therapy, the development of immune therapies, and first-in-human studies for malignant melanoma.

Dr. Hodi is an internationally recognized leader in developing checkpoint inhibitors. He led the first human trial of ipilimumab, which blocks the CTLA-4 checkpoint, and later led the phase III registration trial that led to FDA approval of ipilimumab in melanoma.  Dr. Hodi has continued as a principal investigator in the clinical development of a second family of checkpoint inhibitors, which block PD-1 and PD-L1, and other novel combination therapies. Dr. Hodi is a member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group Melanoma Committee, the International Society for the Biological Therapy of Cancer, and a founding member of the Society for Melanoma Research.