Michael DiGiovanna, MD, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine (Medical Oncology)

Research Departments & Organizations

Internal Medicine: Medical Oncology: Subset Medical Oncology Faculty

WHRY Pilot Project Program Investigators

Yale Cancer Center: Signal Transduction

Office of Cooperative Research

Research Interests

Breast Neoplasms; Clinical Trial; Medical Oncology; Pharmacology; Protein-Tyrosine Kinases; Signal Transduction

Research Summary

We study signal transduction by growth factor receptor tyrosine kinases, focusing on the EGFR/HER2/ErbB family, including the impact of signaling by these receptors on clinical outcomes and response to targeted therapies for cancer, and their potential as therapeutic targets in novel combination therapies. A major focus in our laboratory has been the interaction of HER2 signaling with estrogen receptor (ER) signaling in breast cancer, and more recently with IGF-I receptor signaling, and the effects of inhibitors of these receptors in combination targeted therapies. We have also found that in breast cancer patients, tumors harboring activated HER2 have adverse prognosis, and these tumors have co-overexpression of EGFR. We continue to study how signaling by these receptors impacts responses to different types of therapies and explore targeting these receptors in combination with other novel targeted therapeutics.

Specialized Terms: Breast cancer; HER-2/neu/ErbB-2; IGF1 receptor; EGF receptor; Growth factor receptor tyrosine protein kinases in malignancy; Estrogen receptor; Signal transduction; Breast cancer clinical trials

Extensive Research Description

We study signal transduction by growth factor receptor tyrosine kinases, focusing on the EGFR/HER2/ErbB family, including the impact of signaling by these receptors on clinical outcomes and response to targeted therapies for cancer, and their potential as therapeutic targets in novel combination therapies. A major focus in our laboratory has been the interaction of HER2 signaling with estrogen receptor (ER) signaling in breast cancer, and more recently with IGF-I receptor signaling, and the effects of inhibitors of these receptors in combination targeted therapies. We have also found that in breast cancer patients, tumors harboring activated HER2 have adverse prognosis, and these tumors have co-overexpression of EGFR. We continue to study how signaling by these receptors impacts responses to different types of therapies and explore targeting these receptors in combination with other novel targeted therapeutics.Therapeutic implications of interactions of IGF-I receptor with HER2 and estrogen receptor

Clinical Trials

Conditions Study Title
Breast - Female, Breast - Male, Breast A Randomized Phase III Trial Comparing Axillary Lymph Node Dissection to Axillary Radiation in Breast Cancer Patients (cT1-3 N1) Who Have Positive Sentinel Lymph Node Disease After Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy
Breast - Female, Breast A Randomized Phase II Study to Evaluate Efficacy of T-DM1 With or Without Palbociclib in the Treatment of Patients With Metastatic HER2 Positive Breast Cancer
Breast Randomized Non-Inferiority Trial Comparing Overall Survival of Patients Monitored With Serum Tumor Marker Directed Disease Monitoring (STMDDM) Versus Usual Care in Patients With Metastatic Hormone Receptor Positive Breast Cancer
Breast - Female, Breast Effect of Preoperative Breast MRI on Surgical Outcomes, Costs and Quality of Life of Women With Breast Cancer
Breast - Female, Breast - Male, Breast A Phase II, Multicenter, Open-label, Two-cohort, Non-comparative Study to Assess the Efficacy and Safety of Alpelisib Plus Fulvestrant or Letrozole in Patients With PIK3CA Mutant, Hormone Receptor (HR) Positive, HER2-negative Advanced Breast Cancer (aBC), Who Have Progressed on or After CDK 4/6 Inhibitor Treatment
Breast - Female, Breast Alternate Approaches for Clinical Stage II or III Estrogen Receptor Positive Breast Cancer NeoaAdjuvant Treatment (ALTERNATE) in Postmenopausal Women: A Phase III Study
Breast - Female I-SPY 2 Trial (Investigation of Serial Studies to Predict Your Therapeutic Response With Imaging And moLecular Analysis 2)
Breast - Female, Breast A Study Evaluating the Pregnancy Outcomes and Safety of Interrupting Endocrine Therapy for Young Women With Endocrine Responsive Breast Cancer Who Desire Pregnancy
Breast - Female, Breast - Male A Randomized Phase III Double Blinded Placebo Controlled Trial of Aspirin as Adjuvant Therapy for Node Positive HER2 Negative Breast Cancer: The ABC Trial
Breast - Female, Phase I A Phase II Multiple-Arm, Open-Label, Randomized Study of PARP Inhibition (Veliparib; ABT-888) and Anti-PD-L1 Therapy (Atezolizumab; MPDL3280A) Either Alone or in Combination in Homologous DNA Repair (HDR) Deficient Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC)
Breast - Female, Breast - Male A Randomized, Phase III Trial to Evaluate the Efficacy and Safety of MK-3475 (Pembrolizumab) as Adjuvant Therapy for Triple Receptor-Negative Breast Cancer With ≥ 1 cm Residual Invasive Cancer or Positive Lymph Nodes (ypN+) After Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy
Breast - Female Randomized Phase III Trial Evaluating the Role of Weight Loss in Adjuvant Treatment of Overweight and Obese Women With Early Breast Cancer
Breast - Female, Breast - Male A Randomized Phase III Trial of Adjuvant Therapy Comparing Doxorubicin Plus Cyclophosphamide Followed by Weekly Paclitaxel With or Without Carboplatin for Node-Positive or High-Risk Node-Negative Triple-Negative Invasive Breast Cancer
Breast - Female, Breast - Male S1207 Hormone Therapy With or Without Everolimus in Treating Patients With Breast Cancer (e3)
Breast - Female, Breast - Male Orteronel as Monotherapy in Patients With Metastatic Breast Cancer (MBC) That Expresses the Androgen Receptor (AR)
Breast - Female, Breast - Male Olaparib as Adjuvant Treatment in Patients With Germline BRCA Mutated High Risk HER2 Negative Primary Breast Cancer (OlympiA)

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Contact Info

Michael DiGiovanna, MD, PhD
Mailing Address
Medical OncologyPO Box 208032
300 George Street

New Haven, CT 06520-8032