Ohio State Recruits Top Oncologist to Expand Cell Therapy Program, Lead Bone Marrow Transplant Services

Press Release

In Partnership With:

Partner | Cancer Centers | <b>The Ohio State University</b>

The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute has recruited Marcos J. de Lima, MD, to lead its Blood and Marrow Transplant and Cellular Therapy programs, two key leadership positions within central Ohio’s only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center and largest freestanding hospital.

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James) has recruited Marcos J. de Lima, MD, to lead its Blood and Marrow Transplant and Cellular Therapy programs, two key leadership positions within central Ohio’s only National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated comprehensive cancer center and largest freestanding hospital.

Effective April 1, de Lima has joined an already robust, leading blood cancer team that includes more than 67 hematologists and researchers working in subspecialized, cross-functional clinical care and research teams in the Division of Hematology at Ohio State’s College of Medicine.

Prior to joining the OSUCCC – James, de Lima served as co-leader of the Hematopoietic and Immune Cancer Biology Program at Case Comprehensive Cancer Center and director of the Hematologic Malignancies and Stem Cell Transplant Program at University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center. He brings more than two decades of experience in developing and conducting studies in stem cell transplantation and cells of the immune system to the OSUCCC – James.

“I firmly believe that Ohio State has it all: forward-thinking leadership, resources, commitment and willingness to bring forth new treatments to patients. My vision to create a multidisciplinary engine of cellular therapy development and production has found a home,” says de Lima, who will serve as a professor in the Division of Hematology at Ohio State and as a member of the OSUCCC – James Leukemia Research Program.

An internationally respected expert in cellular therapy and stem cell transplant, de Lima is a critical recruit who will help the OSUCCC – James expand its existing cellular therapy program for the treatment of cancer as well as applications in other diseases.

Like chemotherapy, radiation and surgery, cellular therapy is a separate form of treatment used to treat certain cancers. This treatment approach involves modifying a patient’s own cells or cells from a healthy donor to directly destroy specific cancer cells. In October 2017, the OSUCCC – James was among the first cancer hospitals in the United States to offer the first cellular therapy for blood cancer: CAR-T therapy (chimeric antigen receptor therapy). Since then, four CAR-T therapy products have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of various different blood cancers.

“We are thrilled to have Dr. de Lima join the OSUCCC – James team. His vision and expertise will help us move our cellular therapy and research program to even greater levels. Together with cancer experts focused on immuno-oncology research in the Pelotonia Institute for Immuno-Oncology (PIIO), the OSUCCC – James is well on its way to becoming a powerhouse of exceptional innovation in this and related areas of cancer research,” says Raphael E. Pollock, MD, PhD, FACS, director of the OSUCCC and a surgical oncologist at The James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute.

In his new role at the OSUCCC – James, de Lima will bring new energy and guide resources to build an internal cellular therapy product development program, working closely with the Drug Development Institute at the OSUCCC – James, Technology Commercialization office at Ohio State and Nationwide Children’s Hospital.

“There has been tremendous progress in cellular therapy for cancer, but we are just scratching the surface. We have ambitious goals for expanding clinical trials to develop new and refine existing cellular therapy approaches with the potential to move from conceptualization and testing in OSUCCC – James laboratories to the clinical bedside to help patients. I’m excited to join such a strong team and look forward to us achieving even greater things together — all for the benefit of patients impacted by cancer in central Ohio and beyond,” says de Lima. “It is even more exciting that the multidisciplinary nature of our cellular therapy program has strong potential benefit for other medical conditions beyond cancer, including infectious diseases and autoimmune disorders, for example.”

An accomplished physician-scientist, de Lima has published nearly 400 manuscripts and has written nearly a dozen textbook chapters. He received his medical and master’s in internal medicine degrees from Federal University of Rio de Janeiro School of Medicine and completed his fellowship in medical oncology at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

To learn more about the hematology team at the OSUCCC – James, visit cancer.osu.edu or call 1-800-293-5066.

About the OSUCCC – James

The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute strives to create a cancer-free world by integrating scientific research with excellence in education and patient-centered care, a strategy that leads to better methods of prevention, detection and treatment. Ohio State is one of 51 National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers and one of only a few centers funded by the NCI to conduct both phase I and phase II clinical trials on novel anticancer drugs sponsored by the NCI. As the cancer program’s 356-bed adult patient-care component, The James is one of the top cancer hospitals in the nation as ranked by U.S. News & World Report and has achieved Magnet® designation, the highest honor an organization can receive for quality patient care and professional nursing practice. With 21 floors and more than 1.1 million square feet, The James is a transformational facility that fosters collaboration and integration of cancer research and clinical cancer care. To learn more, visit cancer.osu.edu.