Bio

Bio


Dr. Moding is a physician scientist in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Stanford University. He received his bachelor's degree in Biochemistry from Colorado College in 2008 where he performed population genetics and analytical chemistry research. He completed the Medical Scientist Training Program at Duke University School of Medicine in 2015. For his PhD, Dr. Moding worked in the laboratory of Dr. David Kirsch studying the mechanisms regulating tumor response to radiation therapy. He performed his postdoctoral research in the laboratory of Dr. Maximilian Diehn at Stanford University as part of the Holman Research Pathway using circulating tumor DNA to monitor the response of patients with lung cancer to radiation therapy.

Clinical Focus


  • Radiation Oncology
  • Neoplasms, Connective and Soft Tissue

Academic Appointments


Honors & Awards


  • Fellows? Forum Participant, Society for Translational Oncology (1/2020)
  • Scholars-in-Training Travel Award, Radiation Research Society (11/2019)
  • Kaplan Fellowship, Stanford University Department of Radiation Oncology (7/2019-6/2020)
  • B. Leonard Holman Research Pathway, American Board of Radiology (7/2018-6/2020)
  • Best Abstract Selection, ASTRO Annual Meeting (10/2014)
  • Basic Science Abstract Award, ASTRO Annual Meeting (9/2014)
  • Scholars-in-Training Travel Award, Radiation Research Society (9/2013)
  • Fitzgerald Academic Achievement Award, Duke University Department of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology (3/2013)
  • Winner-Retreat Poster Contest, Duke University Department of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology (9/2012)
  • 2nd Place-Graduate Student Poster Contest, NASA Space Radiation Investigators' Workshop (7/2012)
  • Travel Support, NASA Space Radiation Investigators? Workshop (7/2012)
  • Travel Support, NASA Space Radiation Investigators? Workshop (9/2011)
  • Space Radiation Summer School Scholar, NASA (6/2011)
  • Medical Scientist Training Program Fellowship, National Institutes of Health (8/2008-5/2015)
  • Summa Cum Laude, Colorado College (5/2008)
  • Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society, Colorado College (5/2008)
  • Frank Henry John Figge Award, Colorado College (5/2008)
  • Alpha Lambda Delta Book Award, Colorado College (5/2008)
  • Merck Index Award in Biochemistry, Colorado College (5/2008)
  • Amgen Scholar, University of California San Francisco (6/2007-8/2007)
  • American Chemistry Society Analytical Chemistry Award, Colorado College (5/2007)
  • William C. Champion Prize in Organic Chemistry, Colorado College (5/2006)
  • Biology in Chinese Culture Program Scholar, Colorado College (3/2006-5/2006)
  • Dean?s List, Colorado College (5/2005-5/2008)
  • Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, Colorado College (5/2005)
  • First Year Chemistry Award, Colorado College (5/2005)
  • Barnes Chemistry Full Tuition Scholarship, Colorado College (8/2004-5/2008)
  • Service Scholarship, Mother Moon Foundation (8/2004)
  • Valedictorian, Manitou Springs High School (5/2004)
  • Mayor?s 100 Teens, City of Colorado Springs (9/2003)

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations


  • Member, American Society of Clinical Oncology (2019 - Present)
  • Member, American Association for Cancer Research (2018 - Present)
  • Member, American Society for Radiation Oncology (2017 - Present)
  • Member, Radiological Society of North America (2016 - Present)
  • Member, American College of Radiology (2016 - Present)
  • Member, Radiation Research Society (2012 - Present)

Professional Education


  • Residency: Stanford University Radiation Oncology Residency (2020) CA
  • Internship: Cone Health Dept of Internal Medicine (2016) NC
  • Medical Education: Duke University School of Medicine (2015) NC
  • Residency, Stanford University Medical Center, Radiation Oncology (2020)
  • Internship, Moses H. Cone Memorial Hospital, Internal Medicine (2016)
  • BA, Colorado College, Biochemistry (2008)
  • PhD, Duke University School of Medicine, Molecular Cancer Biology (2015)
  • MD, Duke University School of Medicine, Medicine (2014)

Research & Scholarship

Current Research and Scholarly Interests


My laboratory focuses on three main areas: 1) studying the genetics underlying the response of tumors to radiation therapy, 2) developing personalized treatment approaches for sarcomas and gastrointestinal malignancies, and 3) understanding tumor clonal evolution during cancer therapy. We perform translational cancer research by analyzing human tissue and blood samples with next-generation sequencing to understand the genetic underpinnings and expression signatures that determine treatment response and resistance. We use genetically engineered mouse models to validate our findings, perform mechanistic experiments, and test new therapies. Clinically, I specialize in the treatment of sarcomas, and I am interested in prospective and retrospective clinical research.

Publications

All Publications


  • Integrating genomic features for non-invasive early lung cancer detection. Nature Chabon, J. J., Hamilton, E. G., Kurtz, D. M., Esfahani, M. S., Moding, E. J., Stehr, H., Schroers-Martin, J., Nabet, B. Y., Chen, B., Chaudhuri, A. A., Liu, C. L., Hui, A. B., Jin, M. C., Azad, T. D., Almanza, D., Jeon, Y. J., Nesselbush, M. C., Co Ting Keh, L., Bonilla, R. F., Yoo, C. H., Ko, R. B., Chen, E. L., Merriott, D. J., Massion, P. P., Mansfield, A. S., Jen, J., Ren, H. Z., Lin, S. H., Costantino, C. L., Burr, R., Tibshirani, R., Gambhir, S. S., Berry, G. J., Jensen, K. C., West, R. B., Neal, J. W., Wakelee, H. A., Loo, B. W., Kunder, C. A., Leung, A. N., Lui, N. S., Berry, M. F., Shrager, J. B., Nair, V. S., Haber, D. A., Sequist, L. V., Alizadeh, A. A., Diehn, M. 2020; 580 (7802): 245?51

    Abstract

    Radiologic screening of high-risk adults reduces lung-cancer-related mortality1,2; however, a small minority of eligible individuals undergo such screening in the United States3,4. The availability of blood-based tests could increase screening uptake. Here we introduce improvements to cancer personalized profiling by deep sequencing (CAPP-Seq)5, a method for the analysis of circulating tumour DNA (ctDNA), to better facilitate screening applications. We show that, although levels are very low in early-stage lung cancers, ctDNA is present prior to treatment in most patients and its presence is strongly prognostic. We also find that the majority of somatic mutations in the cell-free DNA (cfDNA) of patients with lung cancer and of risk-matched controls reflect clonal haematopoiesis and are non-recurrent. Compared with tumour-derived mutations, clonal haematopoiesis mutations occur on longer cfDNA fragments and lack mutational signatures that are associated with tobacco smoking. Integrating these findings with other molecular features, we develop and prospectively validate a machine-learning method termed 'lung cancer likelihood in plasma' (Lung-CLiP), which can robustly discriminate early-stage lung cancer patients from risk-matched controls. This approach achieves performance similar to that of tumour-informed ctDNA detection and enables tuning of assay specificity in order to facilitate distinct clinical applications. Our findings establish the potential of cfDNA for lung cancer screening and highlight the importance of risk-matching cases and controls in cfDNA-based screening studies.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/s41586-020-2140-0

    View details for PubMedID 32269342

  • Circulating tumor DNA analysis to assess risk of progression after long-term response to PD-(L)1 blockade in NSCLC. Clinical cancer research : an official journal of the American Association for Cancer Research Hellmann, M. D., Nabet, B. Y., Rizvi, H., Chaudhuri, A. A., Wells, D. K., Dunphy, M. P., Chabon, J. J., Liu, C. L., Hui, A. B., Arbour, K. C., Luo, J., Preeshagul, I. R., Moding, E. J., Almanza, D., Bonilla, R. F., Sauter, J. L., Choi, H., Tenet, M., Abu-Akeel, M., Plodkowski, A. J., Perez-Johnston, R., Yoo, C. H., Ko, R. B., Stehr, H., Gojenola, L., Wakelee, H. A., Padda, S. K., Neal, J. W., Chaft, J. E., Kris, M. G., Rudin, C. M., Merghoub, T., Li, B. T., Alizadeh, A. A., Diehn, M. 2020

    Abstract

    Treatment with PD-(L)1 blockade can produce remarkably durable responses in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients. However, a significant fraction of long-term responders ultimately progress and predictors of late progression are unknown. We hypothesized that circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) analysis of long-term responders to PD-(L)1 blockade may differentiate those who will achieve ongoing benefit from those at risk of eventual progression.In patients with advanced NSCLC achieving long-term benefit from PD-(L)1 blockade (PFS?12 months), plasma was collected at a surveillance timepoint late during/after treatment to interrogate ctDNA by Cancer Personalized Profiling by Deep Sequencing (CAPP-Seq). Tumor tissue was available for 24 patients and was profiled by whole-exome sequencing (n=18) or by targeted sequencing (n=6).31 NSCLC patients with long-term benefit to PD-(L)1 blockade were identified and ctDNA was analyzed in surveillance blood samples collected at a median of 26.7 months after initiation of therapy. Nine patients also had baseline plasma samples available, and all had detectable ctDNA prior to therapy initiation. At the surveillance timepoint, 27 patients had undetectable ctDNA and 25 (93%) have remained progression-free; by contrast, all four patients with detectable ctDNA eventually progressed (Fisher's p<0.0001; PPV 1 [95% CI 0.51-1]; NPV 0.93 [95% CI 0.80-0.99]).ctDNA analysis can noninvasively identify minimal residual disease in patients with long-term responses to PD-(L)1 and predict the risk of eventual progression. If validated, ctDNA surveillance may facilitate personalization of the duration of immune checkpoint blockade and enable early intervention in patients at high risk for progression.

    View details for DOI 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-19-3418

    View details for PubMedID 32046999

  • Circulating tumor DNA dynamics predict benefit from consolidation immunotherapy in locally advanced non-small-cell lung cancer NATURE CANCER Moding, E. J., Liu, Y., Nabet, B. Y., Chabon, J. J., Chaudhuri, A. A., Hui, A. B., Bonilla, R. F., Ko, R. B., Gojenola, L., Jones, C. D., He, J., Qiao, Y., Heymach, J. V., Tsao, A., Liao, Z., Gomez, D. R., Das, M., Padda, S. K., Ramchandran, K. J., Neal, J. W., Wakelee, H. A., Loo Jr., B. W., Lin, S. H., Alizadeh, A. A., Diehn, M. 2020; 1: 176?183
  • Predictors of Respiratory Decline Following Stereotactic Ablative Radiotherapy to Multiple Lung Tumors. Clinical lung cancer Moding, E. J., Liang, R., Lartey, F. M., Maxim, P. G., Sung, A., Diehn, M., Loo, B. W., Gensheimer, M. F. 2019

    Abstract

    Stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (SABR) is highly effective at controlling early stage primary lung cancer and lung metastases. Although previous studies have suggested that treating multiple lung tumors with SABR is safe, post-treatment changes in respiratory function have not been analyzed in detail.We retrospectively identified patients with 2 or more primary lung cancers or lung metastases treated with SABR and analyzed clinical outcomes and predictors of toxicity. We defined a composite respiratory decline endpoint to include increased oxygen requirement, increased dyspnea scale, or death from respiratory failure not owing to disease progression.A total of 86 patients treated with SABR to 203 lung tumors were analyzed. A total of 21.8% and 41.8% of patients developed composite respiratory decline at 2 and 4 years, respectively. When accounting for intrathoracic disease progression, 12.7% of patients developed composite respiratory decline at 2 years. Of the patients, 7.9% experienced grade 2 or greater radiation pneumonitis. No patient- or treatment-related factor predicted development of respiratory decline. The median overall survival was 46.9 months, and the median progression-free survival was 14.8 months. The cumulative incidence of local failure was 9.7% at 2 years.Although our results confirm that SABR is an effective treatment modality for patients with multiple lung tumors, we observed a high rate of respiratory decline after treatment, which may be owing to a combination of treatment and disease effects. Future studies may help to determine ways to avoid pulmonary toxicity from SABR.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.cllc.2019.05.015

    View details for PubMedID 31377143

  • Prognostic factors and patterns of failure in advanced stage Hodgkin lymphoma treated with combined modality therapy. Radiotherapy and oncology : journal of the European Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology Moding, E. J., Advani, R., Rosenberg, S. A., Hoppe, R. T. 2018; 129 (3): 507?12

    Abstract

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: The role of irradiation to non-bulky and bulky sites of disease in advanced stage Hodgkin lymphoma is controversial. We aimed to review the long-term outcomes of patients treated with combined modality therapy to clarify the role of consolidative radiotherapy.MATERIALS AND METHODS: Patients with stage III or IV Hodgkin lymphoma treated with Stanford V chemotherapy and consolidative radiotherapy to initial sites of disease ?5?cm were analyzed retrospectively to determine patient outcomes, patterns of failure, and factors associated with treatment failure.RESULTS: A total of 170 patients were analyzed. Overall survival was 91.2%, freedom from progression was 80.6%, and progression-free survival was 78.9% at 10?years. 5 patients (2.9%) had refractory disease and 27 patients (15.9%) relapsed after treatment. Only an International Prognostic Score (IPS) greater than 2 predicted disease progression. 19 out of 27 relapses occurred exclusively outside of the radiation treatment field, and 17 out of 27 relapses occurred exclusively at original sites of disease. However, only 11 of 170 patients (6.5%) relapsed exclusively at original, non-bulky sites of disease not treated with radiation therapy. The cumulative incidence of local failure at 10?years was 4.6% for unirradiated sites and 2.6% for irradiated sites.CONCLUSION: Patients with advanced stage Hodgkin lymphoma treated with combined modality therapy including consolidative radiotherapy to bulky disease sites had excellent long-term outcomes. Given the low frequency of isolated failures at initial sites, our results suggest that selective radiation therapy to sites at high risk of relapse may be feasible.

    View details for PubMedID 30539763

  • Notch-Induced Myeloid Reprogramming in Spontaneous Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma by Dual Genetic Targeting CANCER RESEARCH Cheung, P. F., Neff, F., Neander, C., Bazarna, A., Savvatakis, K., Liffers, S., Althoff, K., Lee, C., Moding, E. J., Kirsch, D. G., Saur, D., Bazhin, A. V., Trajkovic-Arsic, M., Heikenwalder, M. F., Siveke, J. T. 2018; 78 (17): 4997?5010

    Abstract

    Despite advances in our understanding of the genetics of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), the efficacy of therapeutic regimens targeting aberrant signaling pathways remains highly limited. Therapeutic strategies are greatly hampered by the extensive desmoplasia that comprises heterogeneous cell populations. Notch signaling is a contentious pathway exerting opposite roles in tumorigenesis depending on cellular context. Advanced model systems are needed to gain more insights into complex signaling in the multilayered tumor microenvironment. In this study, we employed a dual recombinase-based in vivo strategy to modulate Notch signaling specifically in myeloid cells to dissect the tumorigenic role of Notch in PDAC stroma. Pancreas-specific KrasG12D activation and loss of Tp53 was induced using a Pdx1-Flp transgene, whereas Notch signaling was genetically targeted using a myeloid-targeting Lyz2-Cre strain for either activation of Notch2-IC or deletion of Rbpj. Myeloid-specific Notch activation significantly decreased tumor infiltration by protumorigenic M2 macrophages in spontaneous endogenous PDAC, which translated into significant survival benefit. Further characterization revealed upregulated antigen presentation and cytotoxic T effector phenotype upon Notch-induced M2 reduction. This approach is the first proof of concept for genetic targeting and reprogramming of myeloid cells in a complex disease model of PDAC and provides evidence for a regulatory role of Notch signaling in intratumoral immune phenotypes.Significance: This study provides insight into the role of myeloid-dependent NOTCH signaling in PDAC and accentuates the need to dissect differential roles of signaling pathways in different cellular components within the tumor microenvironment. Cancer Res; 78(17); 4997-5010. 2018 AACR.

    View details for PubMedID 29844119

  • Mice Lacking RIP3 Kinase are not Protected from Acute Radiation Syndrome RADIATION RESEARCH Castle, K. D., Daniel, A. R., Moding, E. J., Luo, L., Lee, C., Kirsch, D. G. 2018; 189 (6): 627?33

    Abstract

    Exposure to high doses of ionizing radiation can cause lethal injury to normal tissue, thus inducing acute radiation syndrome. Acute radiation syndrome is caused by depletion of bone marrow cells (hematopoietic syndrome) and irreparable damage to the epithelial cells in the gastrointestinal tract (gastrointestinal syndrome). Although radiation initiates apoptosis in the hematopoietic and gastrointestinal compartments within the first few hours after exposure, alternative mechanisms of cell death may contribute to injury in these radiosensitive tissues. In this study, we utilized mice lacking a critical regulator of necroptosis, receptor interacting protein 3 (RIP3) kinase, to characterize the role of RIP3 in normal tissue toxicity after irradiation. Our results suggest that RIP3-mediated signaling is not a critical driver of acute radiation syndrome.

    View details for PubMedID 29634408

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6020684

  • Circulating tumor DNA testing in advanced non-small cell lung cancer. Lung cancer (Amsterdam, Netherlands) Moding, E. J., Diehn, M., Wakelee, H. A. 2018; 119: 42?47

    Abstract

    Circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) shed from cancer cells into the peripheral blood can be non-invasively collected and tested for the presence of tumor-specific mutations. Mutations identified in ctDNA can predict responses to targeted therapies and emerging evidence suggests that changes in ctDNA levels over time can be used to monitor response to therapy and detect disease recurrence. Given the emergence of targeted therapies in advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), liquid biopsies utilizing ctDNA testing represent a powerful approach to genotype tumors and monitor for the development of resistance. Here, we review current and potential future clinical applications of ctDNA testing for patients with advanced NSCLC.

    View details for PubMedID 29656751

  • Survival Impact of Postoperative Radiotherapy Timing in Pediatric and Adolescent Medulloblastoma. Neuro-oncology Chin, A. L., Moding, E. J., Donaldson, S. S., Gibbs, I. C., Soltys, S. G., Hiniker, S. M., Pollom, E. L. 2018

    Abstract

    Radiation therapy (RT) remains a critical component of multimodality treatment for medulloblastoma. Traditionally, clinicians strive to start RT within 4-5 weeks of surgery, but the optimal timing after surgery remains unclear.Using the National Cancer Database, we identified pediatric and adolescent patients with medulloblastoma treated with curative-intent surgery, RT, and chemotherapy. Factors associated with early or delayed RT were identified using Pearson chi-squared tests. Overall survival (OS) differences based on RT timing were compared using the Kaplan-Meier estimator with log-rank tests. Patient, tumor, and treatment characteristics associated with OS were analyzed with univariate and multivariate Cox proportional hazard models.Among the 1338 patients analyzed, early RT (defined as initiation ?3 weeks after surgery) was associated with younger age, M1-3 disease, and subtotal resection. Patients who initiated RT early had decreased five-year OS compared with patients who initiated RT 3.1-4, 4.1-5, or >5 weeks after surgery (72.5%, 80.5%, 79.4%, and 77.8%, respectively; p=0.019), but there was no significant difference in OS among the latter three groups (p=0.788). On multivariate analysis, early RT versus the 3.1-4-week interval was significantly associated with poorer OS (adjusted HR 1.72; 95% CI 1.19-2.48; p=0.004), while time to RT of >5 weeks but within 90 days of surgery did not adversely impact OS (p=0.563).In this large national database analysis, delaying RT within 90 days of surgery was not associated with inferior outcomes. Although clinical judgment remains paramount, postoperative RT timing should allow for healing and the development of an optimal treatment plan.

    View details for PubMedID 29309676

  • The Impact of Post-Operative Therapy on Primary Cardiac Sarcoma The Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery Wu, Y., Million, L., Moding, E. J., Scott, G., Berry, M., Ganjoo, K. N. 2018
  • Concurrent Imatinib and Radiation Therapy for Unresectable and Symptomatic Desmoid Tumors. Sarcoma Moding, E. J., Million, L., Avedian, R., Ghanouni, P., Kunder, C., Ganjoo, K. N. 2017; 2017: 2316839

    Abstract

    Desmoid tumors are locally aggressive fibroproliferative neoplasms that can lead to pain and dysfunction due to compression of nerves and surrounding structures. Desmoid tumors often progress through medical therapy, and there is frequently a delay of multiple months before radiation can provide symptomatic relief. To achieve more rapid symptomatic relief and tumor regression for unresectable desmoid tumors causing significant morbidity such as brachial plexus impingement with loss of extremity function, we have selectively utilized a combination of imatinib and radiation therapy. Here, we retrospectively review four patients treated with concurrent imatinib and radiation therapy. The treatment was typically tolerated with minimal toxicity though one patient developed avascular necrosis of the irradiated humeral head possibly related to the combined treatment. All the patients treated have had a partial response or stable disease on imaging. Improvement of symptoms was observed in all the treated patients with a median time to relief of 2.5 months after starting radiation therapy. Concurrent radiation and imatinib may represent a viable treatment option for unresectable and symptomatic desmoid tumors where rapid relief is needed to prevent permanent loss of function.

    View details for PubMedID 28761389

  • An extra copy of p53 suppresses development of spontaneous Kras-driven but not radiation-induced cancer JCI INSIGHT Moding, E. J., Min, H. D., Castle, K. D., Ali, M., Woodlief, L., Williams, N., Ma, Y., Kim, Y., Lee, C., Kirsch, D. G. 2016; 1 (10)
  • Opportunities for Radiosensitization in the Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy (SBRT) Era CANCER JOURNAL Moding, E. J., Mowery, Y. M., Kirsch, D. G. 2016; 22 (4): 267?73

    Abstract

    Stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) utilizing a small number of high-dose radiation therapy fractions continues to expand in clinical application. Although many approaches have been proposed to radiosensitize tumors with conventional fractionation, how these radiosensitizers will translate to SBRT remains largely unknown. Here, we review our current understanding of how SBRT eradicates tumors, including the potential contributions of endothelial cell death and immune system activation. In addition, we identify several new opportunities for radiosensitization generated by the move toward high dose per fraction radiation therapy.

    View details for PubMedID 27441746

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4957656

  • A dual energy CT study on vascular effects of gold nanoparticles in radiation therapy Ashton, J. R., Hoye, J., Deland, K., Whitley, M., Qi, Y., Moding, E., Kirsch, D. G., West, J., Badea, C. T., Gimi, B., Krol, A. SPIE-INT SOC OPTICAL ENGINEERING. 2016

    View details for DOI 10.1117/12.2217012

    View details for Web of Science ID 000378223800028

  • Acute DNA damage activates the tumour suppressor p53 to promote radiation-induced lymphoma NATURE COMMUNICATIONS Lee, C., Castle, K. D., Moding, E. J., Blum, J. M., Williams, N., Luo, L., Ma, Y., Borst, L. B., Kim, Y., Kirsch, D. G. 2015; 6: 8477

    Abstract

    Genotoxic cancer therapies, such as chemoradiation, cause haematological toxicity primarily by activating the tumour suppressor p53. While inhibiting p53-mediated cell death during cancer therapy ameliorates haematologic toxicity, whether it also impacts carcinogenesis remains unclear. Here we utilize a mouse model of inducible p53 short hairpin RNA (shRNA) to show that temporarily blocking p53 during total-body irradiation (TBI) not only ameliorates acute toxicity, but also improves long-term survival by preventing lymphoma development. Using Kras(LA1) mice, we show that TBI promotes the expansion of a rare population of thymocytes that express oncogenic Kras(G12D). However, blocking p53 during TBI significantly suppresses the expansion of Kras(G12D)-expressing thymocytes. Mechanistically, bone marrow transplant experiments demonstrate that TBI activates p53 to decrease the ability of bone marrow cells to suppress lymphoma development through a non-cell-autonomous mechanism. Together, our results demonstrate that the p53 response to acute DNA damage promotes the development of radiation-induced lymphoma.

    View details for PubMedID 26399548

  • Tumor cells, but not endothelial cells, mediate eradication of primary sarcomas by stereotactic body radiation therapy SCIENCE TRANSLATIONAL MEDICINE Moding, E. J., Castle, K. D., Perez, B. A., Oh, P., Min, H. D., Norris, H., Ma, Y., Cardona, D. M., Lee, C., Kirsch, D. G. 2015; 7 (278): 278ra34

    Abstract

    Cancer clinics currently use high-dose stereotactic body radiation therapy as a curative treatment for several kinds of cancers. However, the contribution of vascular endothelial cells to tumor response to radiation remains controversial. Using dual recombinase technology, we generated primary sarcomas in mice with targeted genetic mutations specifically in tumor cells or endothelial cells. We selectively mutated the proapoptotic gene Bax or the DNA damage response gene Atm to genetically manipulate the radiosensitivity of endothelial cells in primary soft tissue sarcomas. Bax deletion from endothelial cells did not affect radiation-induced cell death in tumor endothelial cells or sarcoma response to radiation therapy. Although Atm deletion increased endothelial cell death after radiation therapy, deletion of Atm from endothelial cells failed to enhance sarcoma eradication. In contrast, deletion of Atm from tumor cells increased sarcoma eradication by radiation therapy. These results demonstrate that tumor cells, rather than endothelial cells, are critical targets that regulate sarcoma eradication by radiation therapy. Treatment with BEZ235, a small-molecule protein kinase inhibitor, radiosensitized primary sarcomas more than the heart. These results suggest that inhibiting ATM kinase during radiation therapy is a viable strategy for radiosensitization of some tumors.

    View details for PubMedID 25761890

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4360135

  • A Plasmonic Gold Nanostar Theranostic Probe for In Vivo Tumor Imaging and Photothermal Therapy THERANOSTICS Liu, Y., Ashton, J. R., Moding, E. J., Yuan, H., Register, J. K., Fales, A. M., Choi, J., Whitley, M. J., Zhao, X., Qi, Y., Ma, Y., Vaidyanathan, G., Zalutsky, M. R., Kirsch, D. G., Badea, C. T., Vo-Dinh, T. 2015; 5 (9): 946?60

    Abstract

    Nanomedicine has attracted increasing attention in recent years, because it offers great promise to provide personalized diagnostics and therapy with improved treatment efficacy and specificity. In this study, we developed a gold nanostar (GNS) probe for multi-modality theranostics including surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) detection, x-ray computed tomography (CT), two-photon luminescence (TPL) imaging, and photothermal therapy (PTT). We performed radiolabeling, as well as CT and optical imaging, to investigate the GNS probe's biodistribution and intratumoral uptake at both macroscopic and microscopic scales. We also characterized the performance of the GNS nanoprobe for in vitro photothermal heating and in vivo photothermal ablation of primary sarcomas in mice. The results showed that 30-nm GNS have higher tumor uptake, as well as deeper penetration into tumor interstitial space compared to 60-nm GNS. In addition, we found that a higher injection dose of GNS can increase the percentage of tumor uptake. We also demonstrated the GNS probe's superior photothermal conversion efficiency with a highly concentrated heating effect due to a tip-enhanced plasmonic effect. In vivo photothermal therapy with a near-infrared (NIR) laser under the maximum permissible exposure (MPE) led to ablation of aggressive tumors containing GNS, but had no effect in the absence of GNS. This multifunctional GNS probe has the potential to be used for in vivo biosensing, preoperative CT imaging, intraoperative detection with optical methods (SERS and TPL), as well as image-guided photothermal therapy.

    View details for PubMedID 26155311

  • A next-generation dual-recombinase system for time- and host-specific targeting of pancreatic cancer NATURE MEDICINE Schoenhuber, N., Seidler, B., Schuck, K., Veltkamp, C., Schachtler, C., Zukowska, M., Eser, S., Feyerabend, T. B., Paul, M. C., Eser, P., Klein, S., Lowy, A. M., Banerjee, R., Yang, F., Lee, C., Moding, E. J., Kirsch, D. G., Scheideler, A., Alessi, D. R., Varela, I., Bradley, A., Kind, A., Schnieke, A. E., Rodewald, H., Rad, R., Schmid, R. M., Schneider', G., Saur, D. 2014; 20 (11): 1340?47

    Abstract

    Genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs) have dramatically improved our understanding of tumor evolution and therapeutic resistance. However, sequential genetic manipulation of gene expression and targeting of the host is almost impossible using conventional Cre-loxP-based models. We have developed an inducible dual-recombinase system by combining flippase-FRT (Flp-FRT) and Cre-loxP recombination technologies to improve GEMMs of pancreatic cancer. This enables investigation of multistep carcinogenesis, genetic manipulation of tumor subpopulations (such as cancer stem cells), selective targeting of the tumor microenvironment and genetic validation of therapeutic targets in autochthonous tumors on a genome-wide scale. As a proof of concept, we performed tumor cell-autonomous and nonautonomous targeting, recapitulated hallmarks of human multistep carcinogenesis, validated genetic therapy by 3-phosphoinositide-dependent protein kinase inactivation as well as cancer cell depletion and show that mast cells in the tumor microenvironment, which had been thought to be key oncogenic players, are dispensable for tumor formation.

    View details for PubMedID 25326799

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4270133

  • Atm deletion with dual recombinase technology preferentially radiosensitizes tumor endothelium JOURNAL OF CLINICAL INVESTIGATION Moding, E. J., Lee, C., Castle, K. D., Oh, P., Mao, L., Zha, S., Min, H. D., Ma, Y., Das, S., Kirsch, D. G. 2014; 124 (8): 3325?38

    Abstract

    Cells isolated from patients with ataxia telangiectasia are exquisitely sensitive to ionizing radiation. Kinase inhibitors of ATM, the gene mutated in ataxia telangiectasia, can sensitize tumor cells to radiation therapy, but concern that inhibiting ATM in normal tissues will also increase normal tissue toxicity from radiation has limited their clinical application. Endothelial cell damage can contribute to the development of long-term side effects after radiation therapy, but the role of endothelial cell death in tumor response to radiation therapy remains controversial. Here, we developed dual recombinase technology using both FlpO and Cre recombinases to generate primary sarcomas in mice with endothelial cell-specific deletion of Atm to determine whether loss of Atm in endothelial cells sensitizes tumors and normal tissues to radiation. Although deletion of Atm in proliferating tumor endothelial cells enhanced the response of sarcomas to radiation, Atm deletion in quiescent endothelial cells of the heart did not sensitize mice to radiation-induced myocardial necrosis. Blocking cell cycle progression reversed the effect of Atm loss on tumor endothelial cell radiosensitivity. These results indicate that endothelial cells must progress through the cell cycle in order to be radiosensitized by Atm deletion.

    View details for DOI 10.1172/JCI73932

    View details for Web of Science ID 000339984000010

    View details for PubMedID 25036710

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4109553

  • Reining in Radiation Injury: HIF2 alpha in the Gut SCIENCE TRANSLATIONAL MEDICINE Lee, C., Moding, E. J., Kirsch, D. G. 2014; 6 (236): 236fs20

    Abstract

    Deletion of prolyl hydroxylase domain proteins or overexpression of hypoxia-inducible factor 2? (HIF2?) in the gastrointestinal epithelium improves survival of mice after abdominal irradiation (Taniguchi et al., this issue).

    View details for PubMedID 24828075

  • Dual-Energy Micro-CT Functional Imaging of Primary Lung Cancer in Mice Using Gold and Iodine Nanoparticle Contrast Agents: A Validation Study PLOS ONE Ashton, J. R., Clark, D. P., Moding, E. J., Ghaghada, K., Kirsch, D. G., West, J. L., Badea, C. T. 2014; 9 (2): e88129

    Abstract

    To provide additional functional information for tumor characterization, we investigated the use of dual-energy computed tomography for imaging murine lung tumors. Tumor blood volume and vascular permeability were quantified using gold and iodine nanoparticles. This approach was compared with a single contrast agent/single-energy CT method. Ex vivo validation studies were performed to demonstrate the accuracy of in vivo contrast agent quantification by CT.Primary lung tumors were generated in LSL-Kras(G12D); p53(FL/FL) mice. Gold nanoparticles were injected, followed by iodine nanoparticles two days later. The gold accumulated in tumors, while the iodine provided intravascular contrast. Three dual-energy CT scans were performed-two for the single contrast agent method and one for the dual contrast agent method. Gold and iodine concentrations in each scan were calculated using a dual-energy decomposition. For each method, the tumor fractional blood volume was calculated based on iodine concentration, and tumor vascular permeability was estimated based on accumulated gold concentration. For validation, the CT-derived measurements were compared with histology and inductively-coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy measurements of gold concentrations in tissues.Dual-energy CT enabled in vivo separation of gold and iodine contrast agents and showed uptake of gold nanoparticles in the spleen, liver, and tumors. The tumor fractional blood volume measurements determined from the two imaging methods were in agreement, and a high correlation (R(2)?= 0.81) was found between measured fractional blood volume and histology-derived microvascular density. Vascular permeability measurements obtained from the two imaging methods agreed well with ex vivo measurements.Dual-energy CT using two types of nanoparticles is equivalent to the single nanoparticle method, but allows for measurement of fractional blood volume and permeability with a single scan. As confirmed by ex vivo methods, CT-derived nanoparticle concentrations are accurate. This method could play an important role in lung tumor characterization by CT.

    View details for PubMedID 24520351

  • Strategies for optimizing the response of cancer and normal tissues to radiation NATURE REVIEWS DRUG DISCOVERY Moding, E. J., Kastan, M. B., Kirsch, D. G. 2013; 12 (7): 526?42

    Abstract

    Approximately 50% of all patients with cancer receive radiation therapy at some point during the course of their treatment, and the majority of these patients are treated with curative intent. Despite recent advances in the planning of radiation treatment and the delivery of image-guided radiation therapy, acute toxicity and potential long-term side effects often limit the ability to deliver a sufficient dose of radiation to control tumours locally. In the past two decades, a better understanding of the hallmarks of cancer and the discovery of specific signalling pathways by which cells respond to radiation have provided new opportunities to design molecularly targeted therapies to increase the therapeutic window of radiation therapy. Here, we review efforts to develop approaches that could improve outcomes with radiation therapy by increasing the probability of tumour cure or by decreasing normal tissue toxicity.

    View details for PubMedID 23812271

  • Dual-Energy Micro-Computed Tomography Imaging of Radiation-Induced Vascular Changes in Primary Mouse Sarcomas INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF RADIATION ONCOLOGY BIOLOGY PHYSICS Moding, E. J., Clark, D. P., Qi, Y., Li, Y., Ma, Y., Ghaghada, K., Johnson, G., Kirsch, D. G., Badea, C. T. 2013; 85 (5): 1353?59

    Abstract

    To evaluate the effects of radiation therapy on primary tumor vasculature using dual-energy (DE) micro-computed tomography (micro-CT).Primary sarcomas were generated with mutant Kras and p53. Unirradiated tumors were compared with tumors irradiated with 20 Gy. A liposomal-iodinated contrast agent was administered 1 day after treatment, and mice were imaged immediately after injection (day 1) and 3 days later (day 4) with DE micro-CT. CT-derived tumor sizes were used to assess tumor growth. After DE decomposition, iodine maps were used to assess tumor fractional blood volume (FBV) at day 1 and tumor vascular permeability at day 4. For comparison, tumor vascularity and vascular permeability were also evaluated histologically by use of CD31 immunofluorescence and fluorescently-labeled dextrans.Radiation treatment significantly decreased tumor growth from day 1 to day 4 (P<.05). There was a positive correlation between CT measurement of tumor FBV on day 1 and extravasated iodine on day 4 with microvascular density (MVD) on day 4 (R(2)=0.53) and dextran accumulation (R(2)=0.63) on day 4, respectively. Despite no change in MVD measured by histology, tumor FBV significantly increased after irradiation as measured by DE micro-CT (0.070 vs 0.091, P<.05). Both dextran and liposomal-iodine accumulation in tumors increased significantly after irradiation, with dextran fractional area increasing 5.2-fold and liposomal-iodine concentration increasing 4.0-fold.DE micro-CT is an effective tool for noninvasive assessment of vascular changes in primary tumors. Tumor blood volume and vascular permeability increased after a single therapeutic dose of radiation treatment.

    View details for PubMedID 23122984

  • In vivo characterization of tumor vasculature using iodine and gold nanoparticles and dual energy micro-CT PHYSICS IN MEDICINE AND BIOLOGY Clark, D. P., Ghaghada, K., Moding, E. J., Kirsch, D. G., Badea, C. T. 2013; 58 (6): 1683?1704

    Abstract

    Tumor blood volume and vascular permeability are well established indicators of tumor angiogenesis and important predictors in cancer diagnosis, planning and treatment. In this work, we establish a novel preclinical imaging protocol which allows quantitative measurement of both metrics simultaneously. First, gold nanoparticles are injected and allowed to extravasate into the tumor, and then liposomal iodine nanoparticles are injected. Combining a previously optimized dual energy micro-CT scan using high-flux polychromatic x-ray sources (energies: 40kVp, 80kVp) with a novel post-reconstruction spectral filtration scheme, we are able to decompose the results into 3D iodine and gold maps, allowing simultaneous measurement of extravasated gold and intravascular iodine concentrations. Using a digital resolution phantom, the mean limits of detectability (mean CNR = 5) for each element are determined to be 2.3mgmL(-1)(18mM) for iodine and 1.0mgmL(-1)(5.1mM) for gold, well within the observed in vivo concentrations of each element (I: 0-24mgmL(-1), Au: 0-9mgmL(-1)) and a factor of 10 improvement over the limits without post-reconstruction spectral filtration. Using a calibration phantom, these limits are validated and an optimal sensitivity matrix for performing decomposition using our micro-CT system is derived. Finally, using a primary mouse model of soft-tissue sarcoma, we demonstrate the in vivo application of the protocol to measure fractional blood volume and vascular permeability over the course of five days of active tumor growth.

    View details for PubMedID 23422321

  • A comparison of radial keyhole strategies for high spatial and temporal resolution 4D contrast-enhanced MRI in small animal tumor models MEDICAL PHYSICS Subashi, E., Moding, E. J., Cofer, G. P., MacFall, J. R., Kirsch, D. G., Qi, Y., Johnson, G. 2013; 40 (2): 022304

    Abstract

    Dynamic contrast-enhanced (DCE) MRI has been widely used as a quantitative imaging method for monitoring tumor response to therapy. The simultaneous challenges of increasing temporal and spatial resolution in a setting where the signal from the much smaller voxel is weaker have made this MR technique difficult to implement in small-animal imaging. Existing protocols employed in preclinical DCE-MRI acquire a limited number of slices resulting in potentially lost information in the third dimension. This study describes and compares a family of four-dimensional (3D spatial + time), projection acquisition, radial keyhole-sampling strategies that support high spatial and temporal resolution.The 4D method is based on a RF-spoiled, steady-state, gradient-recalled sequence with minimal echo time. An interleaved 3D radial trajectory with a quasi-uniform distribution of points in k-space was used for sampling temporally resolved datasets. These volumes were reconstructed with three different k-space filters encompassing a range of possible radial keyhole strategies. The effect of k-space filtering on spatial and temporal resolution was studied in a 5 mM CuSO(4) phantom consisting of a meshgrid with 350-?m spacing and in 12 tumors from three cell lines (HT-29, LoVo, MX-1) and a primary mouse sarcoma model (three tumors?group). The time-to-peak signal intensity was used to assess the effect of the reconstruction filters on temporal resolution. As a measure of heterogeneity in the third dimension, the authors analyzed the spatial distribution of the rate of transport (K(trans)) of the contrast agent across the endothelium barrier for several different types of tumors.Four-dimensional radial keyhole imaging does not degrade the system spatial resolution. Phantom studies indicate there is a maximum 40% decrease in signal-to-noise ratio as compared to a fully sampled dataset. T1 measurements obtained with the interleaved radial technique do not differ significantly from those made with a conventional Cartesian spin-echo sequence. A bin-by-bin comparison of the distribution of the time-to-peak parameter shows that 4D radial keyhole reconstruction does not cause significant temporal blurring when a temporal resolution of 9.9 s is used for the subsamples of the keyhole data. In vivo studies reveal substantial tumor heterogeneity in the third spatial dimension that may be missed with lower resolution imaging protocols.Volumetric keyhole imaging with projection acquisition provides a means to increase spatiotemporal resolution and coverage over that provided by existing 2D Cartesian protocols. Furthermore, there is no difference in temporal resolution between the higher spatial resolution keyhole reconstruction and the undersampled projection data. The technique allows one to measure complex heterogeneity of kinetic parameters with isotropic, microscopic spatial resolution.

    View details for PubMedID 23387766

  • p53 Functions in Endothelial Cells to Prevent Radiation-Induced Myocardial Injury in Mice SCIENCE SIGNALING Lee, C., Moding, E. J., Cuneo, K. C., Li, Y., Sullivan, J. M., Mao, L., Washington, I., Jeffords, L. B., Rodrigues, R. C., Ma, Y., Das, S., Kontos, C. D., Kim, Y., Rockman, H. A., Kirsch, D. G. 2012; 5 (234): ra52

    Abstract

    Radiation therapy, which is used for the treatment of some cancers, can cause delayed heart damage. In the heart, p53 influences myocardial injury that occurs after multiple types of stress. Here, we demonstrated that p53 functioned in endothelial cells to protect mice from myocardial injury after whole-heart irradiation. Mice with an endothelial cell-specific deletion of p53 succumbed to heart failure after whole-heart irradiation as a result of myocardial necrosis, systolic dysfunction, and cardiac hypertrophy. Moreover, the onset of cardiac dysfunction was preceded by alterations in myocardial vascular permeability and density, which resulted in cardiac ischemia and myocardial hypoxia. Mechanistic studies with primary cardiac endothelial cells irradiated in vitro indicated that p53 signaling caused mitotic arrest and protected cardiac endothelial cells from cell death resulting from abnormal mitosis or mitotic catastrophe. Furthermore, mice lacking the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p21, which is a transcriptional target of p53, were also sensitized to myocardial injury after whole-heart irradiation. Together, our results demonstrate that the p53-p21 axis functions to prevent radiation-induced myocardial injury in mice.

    View details for PubMedID 22827996

  • Generation of primary tumors with Flp recombinase in FRT-flanked p53 mice DISEASE MODELS & MECHANISMS Lee, C., Moding, E. J., Huang, X., Li, Y., Woodlief, L. Z., Rodrigues, R. C., Ma, Y., Kirsch, D. G. 2012; 5 (3): 397?402

    Abstract

    The site-specific recombinases Cre and Flp can mutate genes in a spatially and temporally restricted manner in mice. Conditional recombination of the tumor suppressor gene p53 using the Cre-loxP system has led to the development of multiple genetically engineered mouse models of human cancer. However, the use of Cre recombinase to initiate tumors in mouse models limits the utilization of Cre to genetically modify other genes in tumor stromal cells in these models. To overcome this limitation, we inserted FRT (flippase recognition target) sites flanking exons 2-6 of the endogenous p53 gene in mice to generate a p53(FRT) allele that can be deleted by Flp recombinase. We show that FlpO-mediated deletion of p53 in mouse embryonic fibroblasts impairs the p53-dependent response to genotoxic stress in vitro. In addition, using FSF-Kras(G12D/+); p53(FRT/FRT) mice, we demonstrate that an adenovirus expressing FlpO recombinase can initiate primary lung cancers and sarcomas in mice. p53(FRT) mice will enable dual recombinase technology to study cancer biology because Cre is available to modify genes specifically in stromal cells to investigate their role in tumor development, progression and response to therapy.

    View details for PubMedID 22228755

  • p53 acts during total-body irradiation to promote lymphomagenesis Lee, C., Bium, J. M., Moding, E. J., Sullivan, J. M., Jeffords, L. B., Rodrigues, R. C., Ma, Y., Kim, Y., Kirsch, D. G. AMER ASSOC CANCER RESEARCH. 2012

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