Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
J. Joshua Smith, M.D., Ph.D., F.A.C.S. is an Associate Member and board-certified Attending Surgeon on the Colorectal Service in the Department of Surgery at MSK. Dr. Smith’s chief objective as a clinician and scientist is to uncover more precise treatments for each individual rectal and colon cancer patient. He actively cares for patients with rectal and colon cancer using modern surgical methods in a cutting-edge multidisciplinary setting in New York. He is active as a member of the NCI's Rectal Anal Task Force and serves as the Chair on an upcoming Phase III national trial investigating non-operative management in patients with rectal cancer through the Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology, NRG Oncology and SWOG. He was also an active co-investigator in the recently completed randomized trial integrating non-operative management for selected patients with rectal cancer (NCT02008656). In his R37-funded (R37CA248289) laboratory he works to understand the molecular underpinnings of disease progression in patients with rectal cancer and to develop individualized disease models that will facilitate both effective research and precision treatment. To discover potential therapeutic targets and prognostic markers, he applies functional genomics to patients' tumor samples. To develop the means to assess treatment options for the individual patient in co-clinical trials, he investigates methods to model individual rectal tumors in vitro and in vivo. Dr. Smith developed the first relevant rectal cancer model, which involves endoluminal implantation of human rectal patient-derived organoids into mice and ongoing development and use of patient-derived organoids ex vivo.