Charles Drake Joins NewYork-Pesbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center
Published Online:3:31 PM, Tue November 29, 2016
Charles G. Drake, MD, PhD
Drake, a nationally recognized expert in immunotherapy and the treatment of prostate cancer, bladder cancer, and other genitourinary cancers, will also serve as co-director of Columbia’s Cancer Immunotherapy Program.
Prior to joining NewYork-Pesbyterian/Columbia, Drake served as the co-director of the Cancer Immunology Program at Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center. He was also a professor of oncology, urology, and immunology.
“Charles is one of the top minds in immunotherapy and prostate cancer research and therapies,” said Gary Schwartz, MD, chief of the Division of Hematology/Oncology at NewYork-Pesbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center, and associate director for clinical research at the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, in a statement.
“By bringing him on, NewYork-Pesbyterian/Columbia is establishing itself as an emerging powerhouse in immunotherapy, which will allow us to unlock the mysteries of our immune system so we can bring new hope to patients with prostate and other genitourinary malignancies.”
Drake’s work focuses on understanding and fighting advanced-stage cancers with the immune system. He is known for rapidly incorporating discoveries made in the research lab into innovative clinical trials, including antitumor vaccines, according to a news release from NewYork-Pesbyterian/Columbia. His most recent work has focused on the body’s immunological response to radiation therapy and how immunotherapy and radiation therapy can be used together to treat cancer.
“Immunotherapy represents a new frontier in prostate cancer. We’re also looking at how it can be used synergistically with traditional therapies, both in prostate cancer as well as in other tumor types,” Drake said in a statement. “It is truly an honor to join NewYork-Pesbyterian/Columbia, which has shown a deep commitment to building a world-class clinical and translational program in immunotherapy across the spectrum of cancers.”
While previously serving as co-director of the Prostate Cancer Multi-Disciplinary Clinic at Johns Hopkins, Drake developed a novel transgenic model of prostate cancer, in which a unique antigen is expressed exclusively in the prostate gland and in prostate tumors.
Prior to this, Drake was an associate professor in the Department of Oncology and an assistant professor of medical oncology at the Kimmel Cancer Center.
His research has been published in many journals, including the New England Journal of Medicine, Cancer Research, the Journal of Clinical Investigation, and the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
Drake received both his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and his master’s degree in biomedical engineering from Rutgers University. He completed a PhD program at the National Jewish Center for Immunology and Respiratory Medicine at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, and later he earned his medical degree from the University of Colorado. His completed both his residency in internal medicine and his medical oncology fellowship training at Johns Hopkins.