Neha Vapiwala

About Neha Vapiwala

Approximately 30% of patients treated for what is believed to be localized, non-metastatic prostate cancer will progress to advanced disease. One challenge is to identify the mechanisms of therapy resistance and to discover biomarkers predictive of a negative clinical outcome. Dr. Vapiwala’s research goal is to develop methods to obtain directed prostate tissue biopsies at the time of fiducial placement (a reference mark inserted for radiation therapy) in prostate cancer patients who will undergo radiation therapy for localized prostate cancer. The biopsies will be analyzed using molecular biology tools to identify prognostic biomarkers of therapy response and/or resistance. The discovery of such biomarkers would be an invaluable tool for early stage clinical testing designed to evaluate novel radiosensitizing agents (compounds that enhance the effect of radiation therapy). Radiosensitizing agents are vital for enhancing the effectiveness of radiation therapy and preventing later disease progression.

Award

The 2010 Emilio Bassini – PCF Young Investigator Award

Neha Vapiwala, MD

University of Pennsylvania – Philadelphia, PA

Mentor:

Alan Wein, MD, PhD, Professor and Chair of the Division of Urology, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and Chief of Urology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.