Board of Directors

Merrill Biel, MD, PhD, MBA – President

Dr. Biel is a Professor in the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery at the University of Minnesota, and is the Chancellor, Head and Neck Optical Diagnostics Society in London, England. Dr. Biel has been involved in the preclinical and clinical applications of photodynamic therapy (PDT) since 1987, and is considered one of the world’s leading experts in the clinical use of PDT. He is a founder of Advanced Photodynamic Technologies, which was acquired by Ondine Biomedical in 2009. Dr. Biel is a Founding Member of the Society for Minimally Invasive Therapy and a Fellow of the American Society for Laser Medicine & Surgery. He has published over 70 peer-reviewed articles, including 30 manuscripts and 4 book chapters on pre-clinical and clinical applications of photodynamic therapy. Dr. Biel has received numerous honors and awards, including, among others, the prestigious National Research Service Award from the US National Institute of Health.

Sandra O Gollnick, PhD – Secretary

Dr. Sandra O. Gollnick is currently a Member in the Department of Cell Stress Biology, a member of the Photodynamic Therapy (PDT) Center, a member of the Biological Therapies Program and serves as Director of Graduate Studies for the Department of Immunology at Roswell Park Cancer Institute. She is also an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Biology at the State University of New York at Buffalo.  Dr. Gollnick earned her doctoral degree in Biochemistry at Iowa State University in 1986 and did postdoctoral training at DNAX Research Institute in Palo Alto, CA. Dr. Gollnick’s research program focuses on the use of photodynamic therapy, in both pre-clinical and clinical settings as a means of enhancing anti-tumor immunity through alterations in the tumor microenvironment. This research program takes place in the multidisciplinary, highly interactive environments of the PDT Center, the Biophysical Therapies Program and in collaboration with colleagues in the Department of Immunology (Dr. Sharon Evans) and Molecular and Cellular Biology (Dr. Heinz Baumann). Dr. Gollnick is a member of the American Association for Cancer Research, the American Association of Immunologists, and the American Society of Photobiology. She is the author of over 25 peer-reviewed articles, one review article and numerous abstracts. Dr. Gollnick has served as a grant reviewer for the National Cancer Institute, Canadian Cancer Society, the Dutch Cancer Society and the United States Army Research Program and a manuscript reviewer for multiple journals including the Journal of Immunology and Cancer Research. Dr. Gollnick is also an Associate Editor for the Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology.

Keith Cengel, MD, PhD – Treasurer

Dr. Cengel’s currently serves as Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. His areas of interest include treatment of patients with intra-peritoneal spread of gastrointestinal and ovarian cancers with intraoperative photodynamic therapy as well as treating patients with sarcoma with radiation therapy. Dr. Cengel also consults on and treats patients in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Phoenixville Hospital and provides cross coverage for the other Clinics of the Department. Dr. Cengel maintains a translational and basic research laboratory that studies gastrointestinal and ovarian tumor cell biology. Specific interests within basic/translational research of his laboratory include a focus on the ability of growth factor signalling to modulate the sensitivity of cancer cells to radiation therapy and photodynamic therapy.

Tayyaba Hasan, PhD – Vice President of Science

Tayyaba Hasan is a Professor of Dermatology at Harvard Medical School, Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Professor of Health Science Technology at Harvard-MIT, and the Director of the Office for Research Career Development at MGH. Her research is in photobiology and photodynamic therapy with over 200 publications and inventions. She is the Program Director for a National Cancer Institute multi-site Program Project, and holds several other grants. Dr. Hasan is an inventor of the FDA approved photodynamic treatment of Age-Related Macular Degeneration. She is the recipient of William Silen Lifetime Achievement in Mentoring Award and Bench to Bedside Pioneer Award from the National Institutes of Health.

Ron Allison, MD – Vice President of Clinical

Dr. Allison serves as chairman of Radiation Oncology and clinical director of the Photodynamic Therapy Program at theECU Radiation Oncology Department at East Carolina University’s Brody School of Medicine. Additionally, he is chief of Radiation Oncology at Pitt County Memorial Hospital. Dr. Allison has spearheaded much of the effort to bring advanced radiation treatment options and radiosurgery to eastern North Carolina. His dedication to premier medical care is evidenced by his active service as clinician, researcher, administrator and professor. Before joining PCMH, Dr. Allison was an attending physician at the Roswell Park Cancer Institute – The Buffalo General Hospital. He also served as associate professor at State University of New York at Buffalo. Dr. Allison has received several study and travel grants to further his research, has been issued several patents and is a frequent speaker at professional conferences and universities.

Tom Foster, PhD

Dr. Foster received his B.S. in Physics from Stevens Institute of Technology in1983. Following two years at the General Electric Research and Development Center, he moved to the University of Rochester where he received the Ph.D. in Physics (1990). He joined the faculty at the University as an Assistant Professor of Radiology in 1990. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 1994 and is currently Professor of Imaging Sciences, of Physics, of Optics, and of Oncology. Professor Foster recently completed a four-year term as a member of the National Institutes of Health Radiation Therapeutics and Biology study section and an eight-year term as Associate Editor of the journal Photochemistry and Photobiology. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and serves on the Research Program Committee of the Canadian Institute for Photonic Innovation.

Stephen M Hahn, MD

Stephen M. Hahn, MD is the Chair and Henry K. Pancoast Professor of Radiation Oncology at the University Of Pennsylvania School Of Medicine. Board certified in Internal Medicine, Radiation Oncology, and Hematology/Oncology, Hahn completed his residency and served as Chief Resident of Internal Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. Prior to joining Penn in 1996, Hahn was a Medical and Radiation Oncologist in Santa Rosa, CA, Chief of the National Cancer Institute’s Prostate Cancer Clinic, Clinical Pharmacology Branch, in Bethesda, MD, and a senior investigator at the NCI. Hahn also served as a Commander in the NCI’s U.S. Public Health Service from 1989-95. After joining Penn in 1996, Hahn served as an Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology and Hematology/Oncology until 2001, when he was appointed Associate Professor. For the past several years, Hahn has served as Director of Penn’s Photodynamic Therapy program and also directs the Farnesyltransferase Inhibitor Program for Treatment of cancer of the lung, head and neck and pancreas. In addition, Hahn is the Co-Program Leader of the Radiation Biology and Imaging Research Program in the Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania.  Hahn currently serves as a Senior Editor of Clinical Cancer Research and is a long standing member of the American Society of Therapeutic Radiation Oncology, the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the Radiation Research Society, the American Society of Photobiology, the American Association for Cancer Research, and the University of Pennsylvania’s John Morgan Society.

Mladen Korbelik, PhD

Dr. Mladen Korbelik is Distinguished Scientist at British Columbia Cancer Agency and a Clinical Professor at the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of British Columbia.  He is currently a member of Directorship Board of the International Photodynamic Association and is also on Scientific Advisory Board of the European Society for Photobiology.  Dr. Korbelik has been engaged in preclinical studies on photodynamic therapy since 1988, and published over 80 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters on this subject.  He is considered one of the world’s leading experts on immune and other host responses associated with photodynamic therapy of cancer, and has organized and chaired 9 symposia on this and related topics within international scientific conferences.  During the past 15 years, Dr. Korbelik has delivered over 50 plenary or panel talks on photodynamic therapy as an invited speaker.

Edward Maytin, MD, PhD

Dr. Edward Maytin is Section Head of Molecular Dermatology in the Department of Dermatology, as well as a Staff Member in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Cleveland Clinic’s Main Campus. He is also an Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Biomedical Engineering at Cleveland State University and Assistant Professor in the Department of Molecular Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University. Dr. Maytin earned his medical degree from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in Rochester, NY. He completed an internship at Roger Williams Medical Center in Providence, RI. He completed a residency in dermatology and fellowship in endocrinology through Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Mass. He is a Diplomate of the National Board of Medical Examiners, as well as the American Board of Dermatology. Dr. Maytin is a member of several medical societies, including the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Dermatology, the Society of Investigative Dermatology and the American Cancer Society.

Brian Pogue, PhD

Dr. Pogue is Dean of Graduate Studies at Dartmouth College and a Professor of Engineering Sciences at the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth. He holds a Research Scientist appointment through the Wellman Center for Photomedicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital, and has published over 300 papers and abstracts in the areas of biomedical optics, diffuse spectral tomography, breast cancer and photodynamic therapy of cancer. His research focuses on applications of biomedical optics in imaging and treatment of cancer. The work is funded through two program grants and several individual grants from the National Cancer Institute. He is Deputy Editor for the journal Optics Letters for the OSA. He is also on the editorial boards of Medical Physics, the Journal of Biomedical Optics, and the Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiolog. Dr. Pogue graduated with B.Sc. Honors and M.Sc degrees in Physics from York University in Canada, and a Ph.D. in Medical Physics from McMaster University, in Canada. Following this he became a Research Fellow at the Harvard Medical School in the Wellman Center for Photomedicine.

Nestor R Rigual, MD

Dr. Rigual is a Head and Neck Surgeon in full time academic practice with 20 years experience in the field. For the past 10 years, Dr. Rigual has been on the faculty at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in the Department of Head and Neck Surgery/Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. His practice focuses on surgical oncology and reconstructive surgery. Since 2003, Dr. Rigual has been treating patients with photodynamic therapy dysplasia as well as invasive cancer in the head and neck region.  Dr. Rigual’s role in the research team has been that of translational research. He has experience with design and execution of clinical trials, completed accrual of several photodynamic therapy protocols and published on peer-reviewed journals on the subject of photodynamic therapy for head and neck cancer treatment. Currently, Dr. Rigual is the Medical Director of the PDT Center at Roswell Park and is involved in the organization of a multidisciplinary PDT clinical service.

Herbert C Wolfsen, MD

Herbert C. Wolfsen is a professor of medicine at the MayoMedicalSchooland Chief of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy at Mayo Clinic in Florida. Wolfsen’s research has focused on the diagnosis and endoscopic treatment of Barrett’s disease and early esophageal cancer. This includes the development and optimized utilization of diagnostic endoscopic techniques such as confocal laser endomicroscopy and spectroscopy (fluorescent, light scattering and diffuse reflectance) as well as endoscopic resection and ablation using modalities such as photodynamic therapy, carbon dioxide and liquid nitrogen cryotherapy, and radiofrequency ablation. Wolfsen attended medical school in California at Loma Linda University, internal medicine training in Seattle at the Virginia Mason Medica lCenter (with Richard A. Kozarek, MD), and gastroenterology fellowship at Mayo Clinic (with Kenneth K. Wang, MD) studying photodynamic therapy. Research projects included the use of porfimer sodium PDT to eradicate Helicobacter pylori infection and treatment of Barrett’s dysplasia and esophageal cancer.  After leaving the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, he subsequently started the photodynamic therapy (PDT) program at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida in 1996.  The author of numerous PDT related publications and book chapters, Wolfsen has participated in IPA programs since 1992.

Harry Quon, Johns Hopkins

Brian Wilson, U of Toronto, Canada

Theresa Busch, U of Penn