Dr Kavitha Gowrishankar

Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Westmead Institute for Medical Research, Westmead

Telephone +61 2 8627 3781

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Biographical details

Academic Background:

Degree/Position

Institution

Years studied/worked

Dates

Grades/marks

PhD

University of Sydney

3.5 years

2005-2008

Research training

Indian Institute of Science, India

3 years

1992-1995

CGPA 7.2

Master of Science-Bio-Medical Genetics

University of Madras, India

2 years

1990-1992

77%

Bachelor of Science-Botany

University of Madras, India

3 years

1987-1990

81.9%

Schooling

India

12 years

1975-1987

85.92%

Distinctions:

  • APA scholarship from March 2005 for three and a half years
  • CSIR (Council for Scientific and Industrial research), India, research fellow for the period Sept 1992-Nov 1995
  • First rank holder (gold medallist) in the University of Madras, India, for Master of Science (Bio-medical Genetics) 1992
  • First Rank holder (gold medallist) in the University of Madras, India, for Bachelor of Science (Botany) 1990

Research interests

  • CAR T-cells; Immunotherapy for Cancer- Leukaemia, Lymphoma and Myeloma
  • Adoptive Cell Therapy
  • Resistance to targeted therapy in melanoma
  • Immunotherapy for melanoma
  • Transcription factors, gene transcription
  • Epigenetic regulation of cancer
  • Immune function in cancer

Teaching and supervision

  • Metastasis and cancer immunology
  • Cell and Molecular Biology
  • Immunology and infectious diseases

Current projects

Development of KMA-specific CAR T-cells for the treatment of kappa restricted multiple myeloma

Engineering safe and effective CARs (chimeric antigen receptors) to drive cancer treatment -

-Incorporation of safety suicide switches - Apoptotic switches (TSP Projects)

-Incorporation of IL-6 superantagonist and cytokines (TSP and MD research project)

Development of a novel chimeric antigen receptor targeting the B-cell activatiing factor receptor using its ligand, BAFF, for the treatment of leukaemia

Developing CAR T-cells targeting the Stem Cell Factor Receptor (c-Kit) for the treatment of Acute Amyeloid Leukaemia (MD research project)

Associations

  • Westmead Institute for Medical Research
  • University of Sydney
  • Sydney Cell and Gene Therapy Unit, Westmead Hospital
  • Sydney Catalyst
  • Sydney Vital (Northern translational cancer centre)

Awards and honours

Distinctions:

  • APA scholarship from March 2005 for three and a half years
  • CSIR (Council for Scientific and Industrial research), India, research fellow for the period Sept 1992-Nov 1995
  • First rank holder (gold medallist) in the University of Madras, India, for Master of Science (Bio-medical Genetics) 1992
  • First Rank holder (gold medallist) in the University of Madras, India, for Bachelor of Science (Botany) 1990

In the media

http://www.cancerinstitute.org.au/media/125925/research-achievements-report-2011.pdf Cancer Institite, NSW publication 2011

https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?id=157469390965761&story_fbid=109053282565809 ABC 7:30 report about melanoma drug breakthrough

Selected grants

2017

  • Optimisation of Transposon Tools for the Clinical Production of Chimeric Antigen Receptor T-cells; Micklethwaite K, Gowrishankar K, Bendall L, Gottlieb D; Cancer Council New South Wales/Research Project Grants.

Selected publications

Download citations: PDF RTF Endnote

Book Chapters

  • Gowrishankar, K., Carlino, M., Rizos, H. (2013). Acquired Resistance to Targeted MAPK Inhibition in Melanoma. In Guy Huynh Thien Duc (Eds.), Melanoma - From Early Detection to Treatment, (pp. 197-218). Croatia: InTech Publishers. [More Information]

Journals

  • Heinemann, A., Cullinane, C., De Paoli-Iseppi, R., Wilmott, J., Gunatilake, D., Madore, J., Strbenac, D., Yang, J., Gowrishankar, K., Tiffen, J., Hersey, P., Gallagher, S., et al (2015). Combining BET and HDAC inhibitors synergistically induces apoptosis of melanoma and suppresses AKT and YAP signaling. Oncotarget, 6(25), 21507-21521. [More Information]
  • Gowrishankar, K., Gunatilake, D., Gallagher, S., Tiffen, J., Rizos, H., Hersey, P. (2015). Inducible but not constitutive expression of PD-L1 in human melanoma cells is dependent on activation of NF-?B. PloS One, 10(4), 1-19. [More Information]
  • Hersey, P., Gowrishankar, K. (2015). Pembrolizumab joins the anti-PD-1 armamentarium in the treatment of melanoma. Future Oncology, 11(1), 133-140. [More Information]
  • Tiffen, J., Gunatilake, D., Gallagher, S., Gowrishankar, K., Heinemann, A., Cullinane, C., Dutton-Regester, K., Pupo, G., Strbenac, D., Yang, J., Madore, J., Mann, G., Hersey, P., et al (2015). Targeting activating mutations of EZH2 leads to potent cell growth inhibition in human melanoma by derepression of tumor suppressor genes. Oncotarget, 6(29), 27023-27036. [More Information]
  • Gallagher, S., Mijatov, B., Gunatilake, D., Gowrishankar, K., Tiffen, J., James, W., Jin, L., Pupo, G., Cullinane, C., McArthur, G., Rizos, H., Hersey, P., et al (2014). Control of NF-kB activity in human melanoma by bromodomain and extra-terminal protein inhibitor I-BET151. Pigment Cell & Melanoma Research, 27(6), 1126-1137. [More Information]
  • Carlino, M., Todd, J., Gowrishankar, K., Mijatov, B., Pupo, G., Fung, C., Snoyman, S., Hersey, P., Long, G., Kefford, R., Rizos, H. (2014). Differential activity of MEK and ERK inhibitors in BRAF inhibitor resistant melanoma. Molecular Oncology, 8(3), 544-554. [More Information]
  • Becker, T., Boyd, S., Mijatov, B., Gowrishankar, K., Snoyman, S., Pupo, G., Scolyer, R., Mann, G., Kefford, R., Zhang, X., Rizos, H. (2014). Mutant B-RAF-Mcl-1 survival signaling depends on the STAT3 transcription factor. Oncogene, 33(9), 1158-1166. [More Information]
  • Gallagher, S., Mijatov, B., Gunatilake, D., Tiffen, J., Gowrishankar, K., Jin, L., Pupo, G., Cullinane, C., Prinjha, R., Smithers, N., Rizos, H., Hersey, P., et al (2014). The Epigenetic Regulator I-BET151 Induces BIM Dependent Apoptosis and Cell Cycle Arrest OF Human Melanoma Cells. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 134(11), 2795-2805. [More Information]
  • Carlino, M., Gowrishankar, K., Saunders, C., Pupo, G., Snoyman, S., Zhang, X., Saw, R., Becker, T., Kefford, R., Long, G., Rizos, H. (2013). Antiproliferative Effects of Continued Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase Pathway Inhibition Following Acquired Resistance to BRAF and/or MEK Inhibition in Melanoma. Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, 12(7), 1332-1342. [More Information]
  • Boyd, S., Mijatov, B., Pupo, G., Tran, S., Gowrishankar, K., Shaw, H., Goding, C., Scolyer, R., Mann, G., Kefford, R., Rizos, H., Becker, T. (2013). Oncogenic B-RAF(V600E) Signaling Induces the T-Box3 Transcriptional Repressor to Repress E-Cadherin and Enhance Melanoma Cell Invasion. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 133(5), 1269-1277. [More Information]
  • Tran, S., Haferkamp, S., Scurr, L., Gowrishankar, K., Becker, T., Desilva, C., Thompson, J., Scolyer, R., Kefford, R., Rizos, H. (2012). Absence of Distinguishing Senescence Traits in Human Melanocytic Nevi. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 132(9), 2226-2234. [More Information]
  • Gowrishankar, K., Snoyman, S., Pupo, G., Becker, T., Kefford, R., Rizos, H. (2012). Acquired Resistance to BRAF Inhibition Can Confer Cross-Resistance to Combined BRAF/MEK Inhibition. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 132(7), 1850-1859. [More Information]
  • Steain, M., Gowrishankar, K., Rodriguez, M., Slobedman, B., Abendroth, A. (2011). Upregulation of CXCL10 in Human Dorsal Root Ganglia during Experimental and Natural Varicella-Zoster Virus Infection. Journal of Virology, 85(1), 626-631. [More Information]
  • Gowrishankar, K., Steain, M., Cunningham, A., Rodriguez, M., Blumbergs, P., Slobedman, B., Abendroth, A. (2010). Characterization of the host immune response in human Ganglia after herpes zoster. Journal of Virology, 84(17), 8861-8870. [More Information]
  • Gowrishankar, K., Slobedman, B., Cunningham, A., Miranda Saksena, M., Boadle, R., Abendroth, A. (2007). Productive varicella-zoster virus infection of cultured intact human ganglia. Journal of Virology, 81(12), 6752-6756. [More Information]

2015

  • Heinemann, A., Cullinane, C., De Paoli-Iseppi, R., Wilmott, J., Gunatilake, D., Madore, J., Strbenac, D., Yang, J., Gowrishankar, K., Tiffen, J., Hersey, P., Gallagher, S., et al (2015). Combining BET and HDAC inhibitors synergistically induces apoptosis of melanoma and suppresses AKT and YAP signaling. Oncotarget, 6(25), 21507-21521. [More Information]
  • Gowrishankar, K., Gunatilake, D., Gallagher, S., Tiffen, J., Rizos, H., Hersey, P. (2015). Inducible but not constitutive expression of PD-L1 in human melanoma cells is dependent on activation of NF-?B. PloS One, 10(4), 1-19. [More Information]
  • Hersey, P., Gowrishankar, K. (2015). Pembrolizumab joins the anti-PD-1 armamentarium in the treatment of melanoma. Future Oncology, 11(1), 133-140. [More Information]
  • Tiffen, J., Gunatilake, D., Gallagher, S., Gowrishankar, K., Heinemann, A., Cullinane, C., Dutton-Regester, K., Pupo, G., Strbenac, D., Yang, J., Madore, J., Mann, G., Hersey, P., et al (2015). Targeting activating mutations of EZH2 leads to potent cell growth inhibition in human melanoma by derepression of tumor suppressor genes. Oncotarget, 6(29), 27023-27036. [More Information]

2014

  • Gallagher, S., Mijatov, B., Gunatilake, D., Gowrishankar, K., Tiffen, J., James, W., Jin, L., Pupo, G., Cullinane, C., McArthur, G., Rizos, H., Hersey, P., et al (2014). Control of NF-kB activity in human melanoma by bromodomain and extra-terminal protein inhibitor I-BET151. Pigment Cell & Melanoma Research, 27(6), 1126-1137. [More Information]
  • Carlino, M., Todd, J., Gowrishankar, K., Mijatov, B., Pupo, G., Fung, C., Snoyman, S., Hersey, P., Long, G., Kefford, R., Rizos, H. (2014). Differential activity of MEK and ERK inhibitors in BRAF inhibitor resistant melanoma. Molecular Oncology, 8(3), 544-554. [More Information]
  • Becker, T., Boyd, S., Mijatov, B., Gowrishankar, K., Snoyman, S., Pupo, G., Scolyer, R., Mann, G., Kefford, R., Zhang, X., Rizos, H. (2014). Mutant B-RAF-Mcl-1 survival signaling depends on the STAT3 transcription factor. Oncogene, 33(9), 1158-1166. [More Information]
  • Gallagher, S., Mijatov, B., Gunatilake, D., Tiffen, J., Gowrishankar, K., Jin, L., Pupo, G., Cullinane, C., Prinjha, R., Smithers, N., Rizos, H., Hersey, P., et al (2014). The Epigenetic Regulator I-BET151 Induces BIM Dependent Apoptosis and Cell Cycle Arrest OF Human Melanoma Cells. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 134(11), 2795-2805. [More Information]

2013

  • Gowrishankar, K., Carlino, M., Rizos, H. (2013). Acquired Resistance to Targeted MAPK Inhibition in Melanoma. In Guy Huynh Thien Duc (Eds.), Melanoma - From Early Detection to Treatment, (pp. 197-218). Croatia: InTech Publishers. [More Information]
  • Carlino, M., Gowrishankar, K., Saunders, C., Pupo, G., Snoyman, S., Zhang, X., Saw, R., Becker, T., Kefford, R., Long, G., Rizos, H. (2013). Antiproliferative Effects of Continued Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinase Pathway Inhibition Following Acquired Resistance to BRAF and/or MEK Inhibition in Melanoma. Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, 12(7), 1332-1342. [More Information]
  • Boyd, S., Mijatov, B., Pupo, G., Tran, S., Gowrishankar, K., Shaw, H., Goding, C., Scolyer, R., Mann, G., Kefford, R., Rizos, H., Becker, T. (2013). Oncogenic B-RAF(V600E) Signaling Induces the T-Box3 Transcriptional Repressor to Repress E-Cadherin and Enhance Melanoma Cell Invasion. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 133(5), 1269-1277. [More Information]

2012

  • Tran, S., Haferkamp, S., Scurr, L., Gowrishankar, K., Becker, T., Desilva, C., Thompson, J., Scolyer, R., Kefford, R., Rizos, H. (2012). Absence of Distinguishing Senescence Traits in Human Melanocytic Nevi. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 132(9), 2226-2234. [More Information]
  • Gowrishankar, K., Snoyman, S., Pupo, G., Becker, T., Kefford, R., Rizos, H. (2012). Acquired Resistance to BRAF Inhibition Can Confer Cross-Resistance to Combined BRAF/MEK Inhibition. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 132(7), 1850-1859. [More Information]

2011

  • Steain, M., Gowrishankar, K., Rodriguez, M., Slobedman, B., Abendroth, A. (2011). Upregulation of CXCL10 in Human Dorsal Root Ganglia during Experimental and Natural Varicella-Zoster Virus Infection. Journal of Virology, 85(1), 626-631. [More Information]

2010

  • Gowrishankar, K., Steain, M., Cunningham, A., Rodriguez, M., Blumbergs, P., Slobedman, B., Abendroth, A. (2010). Characterization of the host immune response in human Ganglia after herpes zoster. Journal of Virology, 84(17), 8861-8870. [More Information]

2007

  • Gowrishankar, K., Slobedman, B., Cunningham, A., Miranda Saksena, M., Boadle, R., Abendroth, A. (2007). Productive varicella-zoster virus infection of cultured intact human ganglia. Journal of Virology, 81(12), 6752-6756. [More Information]

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