President and Scientific Director of Cure First

A former research associate member at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (2009-2014), Dr. Carla Grandori has spent over 25 years studying the functions of cancer-causing genes and researching the vulnerabilities of cancer cells in the pursuit of more targeted and safer treatments for patients.

Dr. Grandori received an MD from the University of Rome, La Sapienza, Italy and a PhD in biochemistry and molecular biology from the Rockefeller University in New York. After a year at MIT’s Center for Cancer Reseach in Cambridge, MA, she came to the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center as a post-doctoral fellow in 1991. In 2006, Dr. Grandori joined Rosetta Inpharmatics, a subsidiary of Merck, to gain expertise in the cancer drug development process.  This experience inspired Dr. Grandori to change her path and to begin applying her newly acquired knowledge of breakthrough technologies in functional genomics to"tackle” the MYC oncogene, previously considered “undruggable,” which had been the focus of her studies for several years.  Using this approach, Dr. Grandori returned to the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (2009-2014) where, in her lab, her team identified novel drug targets based on the concept of synthetic lethality for MYC-driven cancers including neuroblastoma and ovarian cancer. To read more about her published work see list of publications

In 2009, Dr. Grandori was asked to initiate and lead the Quellos High Throughput Screening (HTS) facility at the University of Washington, which enabled several investigators to adopt functional genomics and high-throughput drug screening in their work.  In 2011, Dr. Grandori was recognized as a Presidential Entrepreneurial Fellow of the University of Washington for her work in establishing the HTS facility.

She is a Co-Investigator of the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Target Discovery and Development (CTD2) Network, and CEO of SEngine Precision Medicine.


Member, Human Biology and Public Health Sciences divisions, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

Dr. Kemp has a long-standing interest in using mouse models to address the cellular, molecular, and genetic mechanisms of tumor progression. His work also involves applying functional genetic siRNA screening approaches to discover and validate new cancer drug targets.  Using arrays, well-based siRNA high-throughput screens, he is working with colleagues to identify, genome-wide, the entire set of druggable genes that are required for survival of cancer cells that carry defined mutations, but not normal cells.  Through a process of prioritization and validation in preclinical models, Dr. Kemp plans to help identify novel, validated targets for drug development.