Ofer Reizes, PhD
Dr. Reizes studies the interface between obesity and cancer. His team discovered that a fat tissue hormone, called leptin, causes cancer tumors to grow larger and promotes the survival of tumor-initiating cells also known as cancer stem cells. People who are obese have too much leptin, so the studies provide an important breakthrough in our understanding why being obese is a risk factor for cancer. His lab is currently asking how and why leptin results in aggressive tumor growth. The studies may help to identify therapeutic approaches to suppress breast tumor growth.
Dr. Reizes is an Associate Staff in the Department of Cellular & Molecular Medicine and Director of Scientific Core Services at the Lerner Research Institute at Cleveland Clinic. Dr. Reizes received his PhD in molecular pharmacology at UT-Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas. He went on to complete a post-doctoral fellowship at The Children’s Hospital Boston and Harvard Medical School in obesity.
In 2001, Dr. Reizes was recruited by Procter & Gamble Pharmaceuticals, Inc. to lead drug discovery efforts in obesity and metabolic diseases. His teams progressed several obesity targets from early discovery to pre-clinical evaluation. Dr. Reizes maintained an active academic research focus via his affiliation with the Obesity Research Center at The University of Cincinnati.
In 2006, Dr. Reizes joined the Department of Cell Biology (recently named Cellular & Molecular Medicine) in The Lerner Research Institute at Cleveland Clinic.
Dr. Reizes research has been published in Cell, Journal of Clinical Investigation, and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. He has been invited to present his research at major national and international meetings including the Endocrine Society and the American Diabetes Association. He is a co-inventor of a patent titled “Methods and Reagents for Regulating Obesity.” He has consulted for several biotechnology companies.