Kenneth J. Pienta, MD
Photo: Kenneth J. Pienta






Elected 2005
The Pienta lab’s research focuses on gaining insight into the biologic mechanisms underlying prostate cancer metastasis. These insights have been used to identify novel targets for the treatment of advanced prostate cancer, thus successfully moving bench research into the clinic in the form of Phase II and Phase III clinical trials. This research has been developed based on a comprehensive theory of metastasis focusing on the cellular traits necessary for the cancer cell to leave the primary tumor environment (emigration), survive in the circulation (migration), and develop in a secondary site (immigration). Dr. Pienta has developed several therapeutic strategies based on this theory, including targeting cell motility, cell – endothelial attachment, and bone microenvironment – prostate cancer cell interactions. The laboratory is now focusing on tumor – stroma interactions utilizing gene expression studies of micro dissected tissue from metastases in different organs as well as preclinical in vivo microscopy models. In addition, Dr. Pienta is currently the principal investigator of Phase II trials investigating angiogenesis inhibition in advanced prostate cancer as well as a Phase III trial to determine the molecular characteristics of circulating cancer cells in hormone refractory prostate cancer.