Oncology Experts

Robert J. Gillies

Cancer Imaging and Metabolism
H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute
United States of America


Robert J. Gillies serves as Vice Chair of Radiology and Director of Imaging Research at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center (Tampa, FL). Prof. Gillies has been Member of Advisory Board at HealthMyne, Inc. since November 10, 2015. He serves as Scientific Advisory Board Member at Intezyne Technologies, Inc. Prof. Gillies joined the faculty at Colorado State University as an Assistant Professor of Biochemistry in 1982. He moved to the University of Arizona as an associate professor with tenure in 1988 to establish a research program in biomedical MRI/MRS. He became founding director of the Advanced Research Institute for Biomedical Imaging (ARIBI) in 2005. He then relocated to the Moffitt in 2008 as part of a major investment in radiology and imaging research. He has received numerous local, national and international awards for his teaching and research, including the Furrow award for innovative teaching (U. Arizona), the Yuhas award for radiation oncology research (U. Penn), the TEFAF professorship (U. Maastricht) and the 2009 Distinguished Basic Scientist of the AMI. At the Moffitt, he continues work on five NIH grants dealing with tumor imaging and tumor physiology, and establishing applications of imaging science to clinical oncology problems. During his career, Dr. Gillies has published over 240 peer-reviewed articles in the use of imaging and spectroscopy to interrogate tumor physiology. He is also the PI (principle investigator) or co-PI on eight NCI grants or sub-contracts focused on cancer imaging. Dr. Gillies serves as the Chair of the Department of Cancer Imaging and Metabolism at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute. He received his PhD in Zoology from University California, Davis in 1979 and did post-doctoral work on in-vivo Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy. first at the Bell Labs (Summit, NJ) and then at Yale University.

Research Interest

The work of Dr. Gillies has impacted all 3 aims of the ET program, with the majority focused on Aim 1: Define & characterize deregulated pathways with therapeutic relevance in subsets of human cancers. Work in this area has examined two different pathways: 1) cell surface proteins that can be targeted by imaging or therapy, and 2) energy metabolic pathways and their sequelae. Dr. Gillies and colleagues have identified targetable cell surface receptors in pancreatic, melanoma and breast cancers. For agents designed to be applied locally, Dr. Gillies and colleagues have looked for single protein targets that are expressed in the cancer or pre-cancer, that are not expressed in normal not adjacent-normal tissues. These can be targeted with homomultivalent ligands (hoMVLs) coupled to dyes or nanoparticles. For agents designed to be applied systemically, they have interrogated the gene expression arrays looking for combinations of cell surface receptors that can be targeted with heteromultivalent ligands (htMVLs). Recently, Dr. Gillies and colleagues have identified both hoMVL and htMVL targets in pancreatic cancers and melanomas, and have identified hoMVL targets for breast cancer in lymph nodes.


  • Ibrahim-Hashim A, Robertson-Tessi M, Enrizues-Navas P, Damaghi M, et al. (2017) Defining Cancer Subpopulations by Adaptive Strategies Rather Than Molecular Properties Provides Novel Insights into Intratumoral Evolution. Cancer Res 77:2242-2254.

  • Permuth JB, Chen DT, Yoder SJ, Li J, Smith AT, et al. (2017) Circulating Long Non-coding RNAs to the Diagnosis and Malignant Prediction of Intraductal Papillary Mucinous Neoplasms of the Pancreas. Sci Rep 7:10484.

  • Caudell JJ, Torres-Roca JF, Gillies RJ, Enderling H, Kim S (2017) The future of personalised radiotherapy for head and neck cancer. Lancet Oncol 18:e266-e273.

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