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Ute Dugan Joins the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy as Senior Vice President of Clinical Research

SAN FRANCISCO – The Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy (PICI) announced today the appointment of Ute Dugan, MD, PhD, as Senior Vice President, Clinical Research. In her new role, Dugan oversees PICI’s clinical development, regulatory affairs and translational medicine efforts, with a focus on overcoming immunotherapy resistance and advancing novel breakthrough treatment combinations. Dugan comes to PICI from Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS), where her work included extensive clinical partnerships with PICI.

“Dr. Dugan has been an incredible collaborator and champion of PICI’s mission over the last several years, and we’re excited to welcome her to our team,” said Sean Parker, PICI founder and chairman. “In addition to her work as a world-class cancer researcher, she also brings a passionate focus on the patient perspective, making sure that we always remember who we’re working for as we pioneer the next breakthroughs in immunotherapy.”

As a medical oncologist in Europe and the United States, Dugan’s research focused on the development and integration of improved cancer medicines into the treatment standards of solid tumors and hematologic malignancies. As Head of Worldwide Oncology External Medical Affairs at BMS, she created impactful research collaboration models to advance immuno-oncology (I-O) treatments together with partners in academia, professional societies and nonprofit organizations. She began her role in 2016, coinciding with the launch of PICI, and her catalytic approach has accelerated the pace and output of research and impacted BMS’ global strategic collaboration business model. Dugan also led the implementation of powerful new tools and applied them to global health equity initiatives, such as building cancer care capacity in low- and middle-income countries.

Dugan originally joined BMS as Executive Director, Global Clinical Research during the formation of the development teams for the pioneering I-O medicines ipilimumab and nivolumab. Before that, her career included stints at Roche/Genentech and Aventis.

“Throughout her career, Dr. Dugan has a proven track record for forging innovative partnerships between academics, practitioners and industry leaders, and that focus and energy has quickened the pace of both research output and clinical impact for patients,” said John Connolly, PhD, PICI’s Chief Scientific Officer. “She’s a perfect fit for the culture of collaboration that PICI exists to foster.”

“PICI is bringing together the brightest academic and scientific minds with the goal to create significant therapeutic advances for cancer patients,” Dugan said. “PICI is uniquely positioned to integrate and leverage the best experts in the field to help solve some of cancer’s most intractable problems.”

Dugan earned her MD degree and PhD degree in environmental health and toxicology at the Heinrich Heine University Medical School in Dusseldorf, Germany. She served as associate professor for medical oncology and senior physician at the University Clinic of the West German Cancer and Transplant Center in Essen, Germany.

About the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy

The Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy (PICI) is radically changing the way cancer research is done. Founded in 2016 through a $250 million gift from Silicon Valley entrepreneur and philanthropist Sean Parker, the San Francisco-based nonprofit is an unprecedented collaboration between the country’s leading immunotherapy researchers and cancer centers, including Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Stanford Medicine, the University of California, Los Angeles, the University of California, San Francisco, the University of Pennsylvania and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. The institute also supports top researchers at other institutions, including City of Hope, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Institute for Systems Biology and Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. By forging alliances with academic, industry and nonprofit partners, PICI makes big bets on bold research to fulfill its mission: to accelerate the development of breakthrough immune therapies to turn all cancers into curable diseases. Find out more at


Contact Information

John Infanti

Senior Science Communications Manager

Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy

(628) 899-7604