Scientific Advisory Board

The CIViC Scientific Advisory Board consists of external independent experts who provide guidance on implementation, documentation, prioritization of curation and development efforts, reporting of variant information for use in clinical settings, funding strategies, long term sustainment of the resource and much more. All current and past board members are listed here.

Rodrigo Dienstmann

Rodrigo Dienstmann is a medical oncologist with expertise in early drug development and molecularly-guided therapies. His research is focused on integrating biomarker data with clinical outcomes to boost precision cancer therapy. After graduating in Brazil and working as a medical oncologist in the public and private sectors, he moved to the Vall d’Hebron Institute of Oncology (VHIO) in Barcelona, Spain, for training in phase I development of cancer drugs. He helped develop a molecular pre-screening strategy to match the genomic profile of each patient’s tumor to targeted agents. At the Molecular Pathology Laboratory of Massachusetts General Hospital, he was responsible for standardized decision support and structured reports of next-generation sequencing tests of somatic cancer variants. Dr. Dienstmann advised the Sage Bionetworks Computational Oncology team in the application of big data analytics models for tumor subtyping, prognostic and predictive multi-omics markers. He then returned to the VHIO, Spain, as a clinical scientist to coordinate the Molecular Prescreening Program and Molecular Tumor Boards at the institution. He is currently working as Medical Director of Oncoclínicas Precision Medicine and Big Data Initiatives, in São Paulo, Brazil.

Elaine Mardis

Elaine Mardis is co-Executive Director of the Institute for Genomic Medicine at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and the Steve and Cindy Rasmussen Endowed Chair in Genomic Medicine. She also is Professor of Pediatrics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. Dr. Mardis joined Nationwide Children’s Hospital in 2016. She was a member of the faculty of Washington University School of Medicine from 1993-2016. Dr. Mardis has authored over 350 articles in prestigious peer-reviewed journals and has written book chapters for several medical textbooks. She serves as an associate editor for three peer-reviewed journals (Disease Models and Mechanisms, Molecular Cancer Research, and Annals of Oncology) and is Editor-in-Chief of Molecular Case Studies, published by Cold Spring Harbor Press. Dr. Mardis has been a member of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) since 2007, was the program committee chair for the 2018 AACR Annual Meeting, and was AACR President in 2019-2020.

Scott Newman

Scott Newman is Vice President of Precision Oncology at Sema4. He obtained a Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge, UK, in Oncology and Cancer Biology. Prior to joining Sema4 worked in the areas of Cancer Genomics, Clinical Genomics and Bioinformatics at Emory University and then St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. At St. Jude, Dr. Newman lead a team of clinical genome analysts with expertise in cancer biology and computer programming to investigate the clinical utility of whole-genome, whole-exome and whole-transcriptome sequencing. Dr. Newman’s team developed processes for mining vast amounts of genome sequencing data for rare pieces of information that could benefit individual patients.

Heidi Rehm

Heidi Rehm, a human geneticist and genomic medicine researcher, is co-director of the Program in Medical and Population Genetics and an institute member at the Broad Institute. She is the chief genomics officer in the Department of Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), working to integrate genomics into medical practice with standardized approaches. She is also a professor of pathology at Harvard Medical School and faculty member of the Center for Genomic Medicine at MGH. As a board-certified laboratory geneticist and medical director of the Clinical Research Sequencing Platform, she is guiding genomic testing for clinical and clinical research use. She is a leader in defining standards for the interpretation of sequence variants and a principal investigator of a major NIH-funded effort called ClinGen (Clinical Genome Resource), providing free and publicly accessible resources to support the interpretation of genes and variants.

Andrew Su

Andrew Su is a Professor at the Scripps Research Institute in the Department of Integrative, Structural and Computational Biology (ISCB). Dr. Su also holds an appointment in the Scripps Research Institute Department of Molecular Medicine. His research focuses on building and applying bioinformatics infrastructure for biomedical discovery. Dr. Su’s lab has a particular emphasis on leveraging crowdsourcing for genetics and genomics. Representative projects include the Gene Wiki, BioGPS, MyGene.Info, and Mark2Cure, each of which engages the crowd to help organize biomedical knowledge. These resources are collectively used millions of times every month by members of the research community, by students, and by the general public. These tools harness the collective intelligence of the biological community to systematically improve the organization and access to gene annotation information. Dr. Su is a world recognized expert and advocate for open data sharing.