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Translational Biology & Molecular Medicine

Houston, Texas

Benchtop, Research, Bedside and Application
Translational Biology & Molecular Medicine Graduate Program
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David M. Spencer, Ph.D.

David Spencer

Department of Pathology and Immunology

Phone: 713-798-6475
Fax: 713-798-3033


  • Ph.D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Postdoctoral, Stanford University

Research Interests

  • Prostate cancer progression
  • Immuno-gene therapy
  • Development and application of conditional signaling molecules, especially chemically induced dimerization (CID)

Clinical Focus

  • Development of enhanced dendritic cell-based vaccines for cancer

Selected Publications

  • Lapteva N, Seethammagari MR, Hanks BA, Jiang J, Levitt JM, Slawin KM, Spencer DM. Enhanced activation of human dendritic cells by inducible CD40 and Toll-like receptor-4 ligation. Cancer Res. 2007. 67(21):10528-37.
  • Park D, Lapteva N, Seethamagari M, Slawin KM, Spencer DM. An essential role for Akt1 in dendritic cell function and tumor immunotherapy. Nat Biotechnol. 2006. 24:1581-90.
  • Seethammagari M, Xie X., Greenberg NM, Spencer DM. EZC2-prostate offer both high-sensitivity and specificity for non-invasive imaging of prostate cancer progression and androgen receptor action. Cancer Res. 2006. 66:6199-209.
  • Hanks BA, Jiang J, Singh RA, Song W, Barry M, Huls MH, Slawin KM, Spencer DM. Re-engineered CD40 receptor enables potent pharmacological activation of dendritic-cell cancer vaccines in vivo. Nat Med. 2005. 11:130-7.
  • Nikitina EY, Desai SA, Zhao X, Song W, Luo AZ, Gangula RD, Slawin KM, Spencer DM. Versatile prostate cancer treatment with inducible caspase and interleukin-12. Cancer Res. 2005. 65:4309-19.
  • Freeman KW, Welm BE, Gangula RD, Rosen JM, Ittmann M, Greenberg NM, Spencer DM. Inducible prostate intraepithelial neoplasia with reversible hyperplasia in conditional FGFR1-expressing mice. Cancer Res. 2003. 63:8256-63.
  • Li B, Desai SA, MacCorkle-Chosnek RA, Fan L, Spencer DM. A novel conditional Akt “survival switch” reversibly protects cells from apoptosis. Gene Therapy. 2002. 9:233-44.

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