Karina Eterovic, Ph.D.

Karina Eterovic is a PhD with over 20 years of experience in Genomics, Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Cancer Biology. She is currently Associate Professor and Head of a Genomic Laboratory at MD Anderson Cancer Center within the Institute for Personalized Cancer Therapy (IPCT). Dr. Eterovic is highly experienced in genomic testing and for cancer patients, including expertise in next generation sequencing (NGS) assay development, protocol optimization for small samples and low quality tissue (which are predominant in the cancer field) and data interpretation. The laboratory she has implemented at MD Anderson has processed over 12,000 samples across different disease sites, including rare tumors. The lab now serves the whole institution as a service center, and it is the designated lab for sequencing all solid samples for the MoonshotTM program. Dr. Eterovic is also the director of a NCI-CCSG core facility at MD Anderson Cancer Center (Characterized Cell Line Core), which provides STR profiling for cell line validation, Mycoplasma tests and Cell Line distribution. She has a solid record of publications in high impact journals and has developed several national and international collaborations providing advisory service for several international academic institutions.

Ben Harmssen

Ben Harmssen completed his undergrad in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology at the University of California, Santa Cruz.  He also completed an Executive Business Program at Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley. Early in his career, Ben worked on discovering genes for the Human Genome Project at Incyte Genomics. He is an inventor on a patent for some of his work mapping the human genome. Later, he worked as a researcher developing potential immunotherapies for a start-up called Gemune.  Ben then moved into the business side of science where he worked his way up from being genomic application specialist, to a sales representative, and then to various sales management roles.  He has experience managing multiple teams and over $200M of annual business. He is now an Executive Director for Covance Inc., the drug development subsidiary of Labcorp. In this current role, Ben manages a team of Business Development Directors focused on providing drug development solutions to Biotech and Pharma companies. Ben has always been passionate about cancer genetics, access to genetic testing, and personalized medicine.

Dan Klass, Ph.D.

Dan Klass earned his PhD in Biochemistry from Stanford University where he focused on developing new methods utilizing the latest in proteomic and genomic technologies in Pat Brown’s lab. As a postdoctoral scholar in the Oncology department at Stanford, he co-invented the CAPP-Seq technology for ctDNA next generation sequencing (NGS), and he has been working from within the Oncology Assay Development team to bring the technology to market ever since CAPP Medical was acquired by Roche Sequencing Solutions. His team is currently designing the next generation of oncology assays and evaluating the potential oncology applications of new technologies. This includes developing end-to-end NGS based products for somatic mutation detection from tumor tissue and plasma samples. To develop new applications of NGS in oncology, Dan’s team collaborates with industry and academic partners on translational research studies.

Jeff Gagan, M.D., Ph.D.

Dr. Gagan grew up in Connecticut, and did both his undergraduate and graduate studies at the University of Virginia. He trained in clinical pathology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, where he also completed fellowships in Molecular and Genetic Pathology. He joined the faculty as an Assistant Professor at UTSW in July 2018. He is the Associate Medical Director of the Next Generation Sequencing Lab. His clinical and investigational interests center around making Molecular Pathology data more accessible by utilizing informatics and modern front end design principles. He is also interested in developing clinical cell-free DNA assays and applying machine learning to diagnostics. He has served on the Training and Education Committee of the Association for Molecular Pathology. Dr. Gagan is board certified in Clinical Pathology and board-eligible in Molecular Genetic Pathology.