Arizona Pioneer Thomas M. Grogan, MD
Thomas M. Grogan, M.D., Founder of Ventana and SVP, Medical Affairs of Ventana Medical Systems, Inc. (Ventana), a member of the Roche Group, receives the AZBio Pioneer Award for Lifetime Achievement at the 2013 AZBio Awards on October 10, 2013. Dr. Grogan was a pathologist and professor at the University of Arizona when in the mid 1980’s he and a small team set out to challenge the limitations of the then current standards and processes for cancer pathology. What was to become the company’s first digital pathology instrument evolved from Grogan’s notes on a yellow pad into the BenchMark IHC/ISH staining platforms. Under Grogan’s leadership, Ventana was founded in 1987, went public in 1996, and was acquired by Roche for $3.4 billion in 2008. Over the last 25 years, Ventana has grown to become a global leader in developing and manufacturing tissue-based diagnostic instruments and tests focused on the detection of cancer. Ventana employees continue to pursue the same deeply rooted mission of innovating diagnostic testing and enabling personalized healthcare to improve the lives of all patients afflicted with cancer worldwide. Dr. Grogan has made it his personal mission to make life better for the millions of patients who battle cancer each day. His passion and dedication are infectious and has spread across the company that he and his team built. Through their efforts they have revolutionized the field of cancer diagnostics and are pioneering new roads in the field of personalized healthcare.”
David S Alberts AZBio Pioneer
David S. Alberts, MD. Throughout his career, Dr. Alberts has focused on translational cancer prevention and treatment research. The emphasis of his laboratory-based and clinical research has been on the chemoprevention and treatment of such pervasive and potentially deadly diseases as cancers of the breast, colon, ovary, and skin. He has been the UA Cancer Center’s director since 2005. Under Dr. Alberts’ leadership the extensive research portfolio of The University of Arizona Cancer Center includes more than $60 million in annual research funding, including four large NCI interdisciplinary programs, and two Special Programs of Research Excellence, one in gastrointestinal cancers and one in lymphoma. Clinically, Dr. Alberts pioneered new treatments for advanced ovarian cancers, including in vitro tumor cell chemosensitivity testing for personalized medicine strategies, intraperitoneal chemotherapy , and maintenance chemotherapy. Presently, Dr. Alberts helps to coordinate Phase I and II and pharmacokinetic drug studies at The University of Arizona Cancer Center for molecularly-targeted chemopreventive agents. His laboratory research is concentrated on the evaluation of new surrogate endpoint biomarkers for cancer prevention trials with a special focus on precursor lesions for bladder, breast, colon, cervical, endometrial, ovarian, prostate, and skin cancers, using quantitative histopathology (i.e. karyometric) approaches. His NCI funded drug and diagnostics research has resulted in more than two dozen patents and the co-founding of five Arizona pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.