West Clinic Welcomes Daruka Mahadevan, MD, PhD, New Director of Phase I Clinical Trials Program and Associate Director of Research

Published On 05/31/2012

The West Clinic, the Mid-South’s premier cancer center and world-class center of excellence in medical oncology, hematology, oncologic imaging, clinical research and other advanced medical care, announced today the addition of Daruka Mahadevan, MD, PhD, preeminent cancer scientist, to its internationally-renowned research team. Dr. Mahadevan is the former Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of the Phase I, New Drug Program Development at the University of Arizona-Arizona Cancer Center. He is being named Director of the Phase One Clinical Trials Program and Associate Director of Research with The West Clinic and Full Professor with the Division of Hematology Oncology at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC). 

Noted internationally for his accomplishments in building the Phase I Program at the University of Arizona, Dr. Mahadevan’s major area of clinical research interest is in the treatment and management of patients with Pancreatic cancer, Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumors (GIST), Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) including Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL). As Director of the Phase I Program, he will conduct first-in-human clinical trials with novel drugs for patients with all solid tumor types as well as patients with MDS, CLL and NHL. 

"We are pleased to welcome Dr. Mahadevan to the UTHSC faculty," said David M. Stern, M.D., executive dean of the College of Medicine and vice chancellor of Clinical Affairs for the University of Tennessee Health Science Center.  "His proven expertise, professionalism and commitment to scientific discovery will enhance the extant talents and amplify the educational offerings within our institution." 


According to Lee S. Schwartzberg, MD, Medical Director, The West Clinic; Chief, Division of Hematology/Oncology and Professor of Medicine, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, and President, ACORN Research, “The West Clinic has been building our clinical research program for many years and we are focused on expanding our Phase 1 capabilities. We are extremely excited to recruit Dr. Mahadevan as Director of our Phase I Program.  He brings a wealth of experience and academic rigor as an experienced scientist to our efforts. He organized the Phase I Program at the University of Arizona and will further develop our Phase I Program and research capabilities to new heights, allowing us to offer the most comprehensive clinical trials program in the region. This will enhance our capabilities to compete with any center in the United States.” 

“Dr. Mahadevan is the first translational scientist to join The West Clinic,” Schwartzberg continued. “He brings a lab in drug discovery with grants recognized by the NCI with distinction worthy of funding. Dr. Mahadevan will play a pivotal role as a foundational scientist to bring our cancer center with Methodist Healthcare and University of Tennessee Health Science Center to fruition.” 

“This is exactly the caliber of talent we envisioned attracting to The West Clinic, when we announced our partnership last year,” said Gary S. Shorb, President and CEO, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare.  “The West Clinic, the University of Tennessee Health Science Center and Methodist are proud to be able to enhance cancer research for our patients.” 


Daruka Mahadevan, M.D., Ph. D., is former Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of the Phase I, New Drug Development Program at the University of Arizona – Arizona Cancer Center.  He received his B.Sc. (Hons.) in Physiology and Biochemistry with Chemistry from the University of Reading, England, Ph.D. in protein crystallography from Birkbeck College, University of London and medical degree from King’s College Hospital Medical School, University of London, England, United Kingdom. Dr. Mahadevan completed a post-doctoral Fogarty International fellowship at the National Cancer Institute/NIH and was a senior research scientist at Celltech Therapeutics, London, England. He completed internal medicine residency at University of Connecticut and fellowship training in Hematology/Oncology at the AZCC. He is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and Medical Oncology. He has written over 70 peer-reviewed full length articles included in Nature, Blood and the Journal of Clinical Oncology, several book chapters and six US patents on novel agents targeting cancer.

“I am excited to be joining The West Clinic and build a world-class Phase I program of translational research with the University of Tennessee and build a collaboration with  ACORN Research,” stated Dr. Mahadevan. “ My vision is to be able to keep patients alive for at least a year beyond their final standard of care. This will be a great service to patients in our care. In addition, this will be a great research opportunity to learn from this experience and to build new molecules into frontline cancer therapies.”

“ACORN Research is very excited to welcome Dr. Mahadevan to The West Clinic as he will add significant scientific bandwidth to the types of projects we can support.  Combining academic expertise with the robust private sector research capabilities found at ACORN Research creates powerful synergy to fuel research productivity in oncology,” observed Edward Stepanski, Ph.D., Chief Operating Officer at ACORN Research LLC. 

About The West Clinic

The West Clinic has been the Mid-South’s premier provider of cancer care for over 33 years. With a team second to none in breadth of expertise, dedication to excellence, and compassionate care, our multidisciplinary physician group is comprised of 30 specialists in Medical Oncology, Hematology, Gynecologic Oncology, Breast Surgery, Endocrinology, Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology, Pain and Palliative Care, and other advanced medical care. With eight locations in Memphis, West TN, and North MS, patients across the Mid-South have greater access to the highest quality care available. 

The West Clinic’s clinical research program, under the direction of Lee S. Schwartzberg, MD, FACP, Medical Director, is internationally renowned. Over the past two decades, West Clinic has consistently been one of the first centers in the US to gain experience and hasten the development of new drugs for breast cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer, prostate cancer, lymphoma, and many other diseases.  

In 2012, The West Clinic formed a partnership with Methodist Healthcare and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) in order to transform cancer care in the Mid-South. This novel partnership takes advantage of the strengths and culture of all three partners that are leading to the development of a fully integrated cancer program which will expand our collaborative efforts in cancer research and education along with a vision toward personalized precision cancer care. 

About ACORN Research, LLC

ACORN Research, LLC is a multifaceted research organization that harmonizes a network of committed oncology research sites supported by centralized research processes, a bioinformatics platform that integrates EMR data with ePRO data to support health outcomes research and clinical trial efficiencies, and a Contract Research Organization focused exclusively on oncology. AdeptBio, LLC, an ACORN partnership, offers high quality biospecimens and biofluids using unmatched sophistication in donor services.