Carola Ries, PhD, is Senior Principal Scientist in Roche’s Pharma Research and Early Development (pRED) organization at the Roche Innovation Center Penzberg, Germany. She leads the oncology discovery activities to design novel therapeutics targeting the immune suppressive tumor microenvironment. Carola Ries received her PhD in Molecular and Cell Biology from the University of Aachen (1998), Germany, where she studied the transcriptional regulation of tissue specific genes. From 1998 to 2001, she did her postdoctoral training in the laboratory of Dr. Frank McCormick at the University of California, San Francisco, investigating the application of tumor-selectively replicating adenoviruses for cancer therapy (Onyx-015). She also studied the contribution of major signaling pathways, such as p53 and Ras signaling, to tumorigenesis and resistance to radiation therapy. Since 2003 Dr. Ries pursued cancer related drug discovery with Roche pRED applying e.g. three-dimensional culture models of tumor spheroids as well as cocultures of tumor and stromal cells. In 2006 she established a team of scientists to develop and optimize an anti-CSF-1R antibody for therapeutic application, ranging from lead generation to preclinical development incl. safety assessment in cynomolgus monkeys. In 2011, phase 1 clinical development of the selected lead CSF-1R antibody started, and is accompanied by an extensive biomarker program. Dr. Ries’ current research interests center on deciphering the role of tumor associated macrophages and the impact of their depletion on tumorigenesis, particularly in mediating resistance to cancer therapeutics.
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