Dr. Nikolaus Schultz

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC), New York, USA.

Nikolaus Schultz is an Associate Attending in the Computational Oncology Service in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC).

He trained in biochemistry and molecular biology and received a PhD from the Free University in Berlin.

His research focuses on identifying the genomic alterations that underlie different types of cancer by using computational methods. He is also the Head of Knowledge Systems in the Marie-Josée and Henry R. Kravis Center for Molecular Oncology (CMO). Here, he leads the development of the cBioPortal for Cancer Genomics, a popular resource for the visualization and analysis of large-scale cancer genomics data sets, as well as OncoKB, a knowledge base for precision oncology.


Day 2: September 12, 2019 | Session 2 Keynote | 1:00 PM - 1:30 PM

Towards Clinical Decision Support in Oncology: Identifying Driver Alterations and Therapeutic Options

Nikolaus Schultz, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, USA

With prospective clinical sequencing of tumors emerging as a mainstay in cancer care, an urgent need exists for clinical support tools that identify the clinical implications associated with specific mutation events. To this end, we have developed three tools for the interpretation and visualization of cancer variants, enabling researchers and clinicians to make discoveries and treatment decisions: 1) Cancer Hotspots (http://cancerhotspots.org) is a method and resource that identifies recurrently mutated amino acids in cancer genes. These variants, so-called hotspots, are more likely to be drivers and are potentially therapeutically actionable. 2) OncoKB (http://oncokb.org) is a precision oncology knowledgebase that annotates the biologic and oncogenic effects as well as prognostic and predictive significance of somatic molecular alterations. Potential treatment implications are stratified by the level of evidence that a specific molecular alteration is predictive of drug response on the basis of US Food and Drug Administration labeling, National Comprehensive Cancer Network guidelines, disease-focused expert group recommendations, and scientific literature. 3) The cBioPortal for Cancer Genomics (http://cbioportal.org) is a web-based analysis tool for the visualization and analysis of cancer variants. Through its intuitive interface it makes complex cancer genomics data easily accessible by researchers and clinicians without bioinformatics experience. It integrates information from Cancer Hotspots and OncoKB to enable the identification of potential driver mutations and therapeutic options. All three resources are used routinely at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in its clinical sequencing effort, which to date has profiled more than 42,000 tumor samples.