Keith A. Cengel, M.D., Ph.D.

faculty photo
Professor of Radiation Oncology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania
Director, Photodynamic Therapy Program, University of Pennsylvania
Vice-Chair, Data and Safety Monitoring Board, Abramson Cancer Center
Executive Director, Penn Mesothelioma and Pleural Diseases Program
Department: Radiation Oncology

Contact information
Smilow Center for Translational Research, Room 8-136
Univ of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine
3400 Civic Center Blvd, Bldg 421
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Office: 215-898-1035
Fax: 215-349-5445
Lab: 215-898-0838
BS (Biochemistry)
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1991.
BS (Biology)
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1991.
MS (Cellular/Molecular Biology)
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1993.
PhD (Cellular/Molecular Biology)
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1998.
MD (Medical)
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2001.
Permanent link
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Description of Research Expertise

1. Defining Mechanisms and Reducing Toxicity from Normal Tissue Damage Caused by Ionizing Radiation: These projects center on modeling the physical patterns of dose deposition by x-rays, gamma rays and charged particles and determining the mechanism(s) that lead to normal tissue toxicity. From a greater understanding of these mechanisms, these projects seek to identify and formulate potential radiation protectors and mitigators for use in human medicine.

2. Cellular Signaling and PDT cytotoxicity: This project is focused on defining the molecular mechanism by which PDT-initiated growth factor and anti-oxidant signaling leads to decreased PDT-mediated cytotoxicity in human cancer cells and tumors.

3. Clinical trials of RT and PDT: These projects involve using insights gained from pre-clinical studies to design early phase interventional trials for patients with cancers that are difficult to treat using current standard modalities.

Description of Clinical Expertise

Photodynamic Therapy
Radiation therapy for neuroendocrine and thoracic tumors

Selected Publications

Yegya-Raman N, Berman AT, Ciunci CA, Friedes C, Berlin E, Iocolano M, Wang X, Lai C, Levin WP, Cengel KA, O'Reilly SE, Cohen RB, Aggarwal C, Marmarelis ME, Singh AP, Sun L, Bradley JD, Plastaras JP, Simone CB 2nd, Langer CJ, Feigenberg SJ.: Phase 2 Trial of Consolidation Pembrolizumab After Proton Reirradiation for Thoracic Recurrences of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 119: 56-65, May 2024.

Chowdhury P, Velalopoulou A, Verginadis II, Morcos G, Loo PE, Kim MM, Motlagh SAO, Shoniyozov K, Diffenderfer ES, Ocampo EA, Putt M, Assenmacher CA, Radaelli E, Lu J, Qin L, Liu H, Leli NM, Girdhani S, Denef N, Vander Stappen F, Cengel KA, Busch TM, Metz JM, Dong L, Lin A, Koumenis C.: Proton FLASH radiotherapy ameliorates radiation-induced salivary gland dysfunction and oral mucositis and increases survival in a mouse model of head and neck cancer. Mol Cancer Ther Apr 2024.

Yegya-Raman N, Friedes C, Lee SH, Iocolano M, Duan L, Wang X, Li B, Aggarwal C, Cohen RB, Su W, Doucette A, Levin WP, Cengel KA, DiBardino D, Teo BK, O'Reilly SE, Sun L, Bradley JD, Xiao Y, Langer CJ, Feigenberg SJ.: Pneumonitis Rates Before and After Adoption of Immunotherapy Consolidation in Patients With Locally Advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Treated With Concurrent Chemoradiation. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 118: 1445-1454, Apr 2024.

Friedes C, Iocolano M, Lee SH, Li B, Duan L, Levin WP, Cengel KA, Sun LL, Aggarwal C, Marmarelis ME, Doucette A, Cohen RB, Xiao Y, Langer CJ, Bradley J, Feigenberg SJ, Yegya-Raman N.: Patterns of Failure, Low-Volume Relapse, and Subsequent Ablative Management in Locally Advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Treated With Definitive Chemoradiation and Consolidation Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 118: 1435-1444, Apr 2024.

Kim K, Kim MM, Skoufos G, Diffenderfer ES, Motlagh SAO, Kokkorakis M, Koliaki I, Morcos G, Shoniyozov K, Griffin J, Hatzigeorgiou AG, Metz JM, Lin A, Feigenberg SJ, Cengel KA, Ky B, Koumenis C, Verginadis II.: FLASH Proton Radiation Therapy Mitigates Inflammatory and Fibrotic Pathways and Preserves Cardiac Function in a Preclinical Mouse Model of Radiation-Induced Heart Disease. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys Feb 2024.

Iocolano M, Yegya-Raman N, Friedes C, Wang X, Kegelman T, Lee SH, Duan L, Li B, Levin WP, Cengel KA, Konski A, Langer CJ, Cohen RB, Sun L, Aggarwal C, Doucette A, Xiao Y, Kevin Teo BK, O'Reilly S, Zou W, Bradley JD, Simone CB 2nd, Feigenberg SJ.: Acute hospitalizations after proton therapy versus intensity-modulated radiotherapy for locally advanced non-small cell lung cancer in the durvalumab era. Cancer Jan 2024.

Cengel KA, Kim MM, Diffenderfer ES, Busch TM.: FLASH Radiotherapy: What Can FLASH's Ultra High Dose Rate Offer to the Treatment of Patients With Sarcoma? Semin Radiat Oncol 2024.

Friedes C, Iocolano M, Lee SH, Duan L, Li B, Doucette A, Cohen RB, Aggarwal C, Sun LL, Levin WP, Cengel KA, Kao G, Teo BK, Langer CJ, Xiao Y, Bradley J, Feigenberg SJ, Yegya-Raman N.: The effective radiation dose to immune cells predicts lymphopenia and inferior cancer control in locally advanced NSCLC. Radiother Oncol 2024.

Soulen MC, Teitelbaum UR, Mick R, Eads J, Mondschein JI, Dagli M, van Houten D, Damjanov N, Schneider C, Cengel K, Metz DC.: Integrated Capecitabine-Temozolomide with Radioembolization for Liver-Dominant G2 NETs: Long-Term Outcomes of a Single-Institution Retrospective Study. Cardiovasc Intervent Radiol 2024.

Sun H, Ong Y, Yang W, Sourvanos D, Dimofte A, Busch TM, Singhal S, Cengel KA, Zhu TC.: Clinical PDT dose dosimetry for pleural Photofrin-mediated photodynamic therapy. J Biomed Opt 2024.

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Last updated: 05/02/2024
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