Tobias Janowitz

Tobias Janowitz

Associate Professor
Cancer Center Program Co-Leader

M.D., Ph.D., University of Cambridge, UK, 2007

janowitz@cshl.edu | 516-367-8422

Janowitz Lab Website   Faculty Profile

Cancer is a systemic disease. Using both laboratory and clinical research, my group investigates the connections between metabolism, endocrinology, and immunology to discover how the body’s response to a tumor can be used to improve treatment for patients with cancer.

How do tumors interact with the biology of the host system? What can we learn from studying the physiology and biochemistry of the host system in the context of cancer? These are principle questions that drive the research in my laboratory. For example, we investigate the convergence of systemic metabolic stress, endocrinology, and suppressed anti-cancer immunity to discover mechanism-based strategies for combination therapy for patients with cancer. We have shown that interleukin-6 induced metabolic stress is sufficient to downregulate hepatic ketogenesis. This causes significant systemic stress during periods of caloric deficiency that are often part of the cancer care pathway. The resulting elevation of glucocorticoids suppresses anti-tumor immunity in model systems of pancreatic cancer. Using clinical samples and data, we have shown correlative findings of weight loss, reduced ketogenesis, and elevated glucocorticoids in patients with pancreatic cancer. Our work, therefore, confirms that cancer cannot be understood and probably not be treated, by investigating tumors in isolation. We use findings like these to develop strategies for interventional studies with the aim to improve outcome for patients with cancer.

Cancer Research UK Clinician Scientist Award
Wellcome Trust Translational Medicine and Therapeutics Academic Clinical Lectureship
Boehringer Ingelheim Fond PhD Fellowship
German National Merit Scholarship

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Selected Publications

Cancer: The Tumor-Driven Disease of the Host

3 Jul 2018 | Cell Metabolism | 28(1):5-6
Janowitz, T

A type III complement factor D deficiency: Structural insights for inhibition of the alternative pathway

Jul 2018 | Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology | 142(1):311-314.e6
Sng, C, O'Byrne, S, Prigozhin, D, Bauer, M, Harvey, J, Ruhle, M, Challis, B, Lear, S, Roberts, L, Workman, S, Janowitz, T, Magiera, L, Doffinger, R, Buckland, M, Jodrell, D, Semple, R, Wilson, T, Modis, Y, Thaventhiran, J

Rapid disease progression in a patient with mismatch repair-deficient and cortisol secreting adrenocortical carcinoma treated with pembrolizumab

21 Jun 2018 | Seminars in Oncology
Casey, R, Giger, O, Seetho, I, Marker, A, Pitfield, D, Boyle, L, Gurnell, M, Shaw, A, Tischowitz, M, Maher, E, Chatterjee, V, Janowitz, T, Mells, G, Corrie, P, Challis, B

A comparative analysis of immune privilege in pregnancy and cancer in the context of checkpoint blockade immunotherapy

26 Mar 2018 | Seminars in Oncology
Flint, T, Jones, J, Ferrer, M, Colucci, F, Janowitz, T

Cancer Immunotherapy Trials Underutilize Immune Response Monitoring

Jan 2018 | Oncologist | 23(1):116-117
Connell, C, Raby, S, Beh, I, Flint, T, Williams, E, Fearon, D, Jodrell, D, Janowitz, T

All Publications

A guideline on the molecular ecosystem regulating ferroptosis

29 Feb 2024 | Nature Cell Biology
Dai, Enyong, Chen, Xin, Linkermann, Andreas, Jiang, Xuejun, Kang, Rui, Kagan, Valerian, Bayir, Hülya, Yang, Wan, Garcia-Saez, Ana, Ioannou, Maria, Janowitz, Tobias, Ran, Qitao, Gu, Wei, Gan, Boyi, Krysko, Dmitri, Zhu, Xiaofeng, Wang, Jiayi, Krautwald, Stefan, Toyokuni, Shinya, Xie, Yangchun, Greten, Florian, Yi, Qing, Schick, Joel, Liu, Jiao, Gabrilovich, Dmitry, Liu, Jinbao, Zeh, Herbert, Zhang, Donna, Yang, Minghua, Iovanna, Juan, Kopf, Manfred, Adolph, Timon, Chi, Jen-Tsan, Li, Changfeng, Ichijo, Hidenori, Karin, Michael, Sankaran, Vijay, Zou, Weiping, Galluzzi, Lorenzo, Bush, Ashley, Li, Binghui, Melino, Gerry, Baehrecke, Eric, Lotze, Michael, Klionsky, Daniel, Stockwell, Brent, Kroemer, Guido, Tang, Daolin

Opportunities and challenges for innovative and equitable healthcare

26 Feb 2024 | Nature Reviews Drug Discovery
Ecker, D, Aiello, C, Arron, J, Bennett, C, Bernard, A, Breakefield, X, Broderick, T, Callier, S, Canton, B, Chen, J, Fishburn, C, Garrett, B, Hecht, S, Janowitz, T, Kliegman, M, Krainer, A, Louis, C, Lowe, C, Sehgal, A, Tozan, Y, Tracey, K, Urnov, F, Wattendorf, D, Williams, T, Zhao, X, Hayden, M

Sensitive, non-immunogenic in vivo imaging of cancer metastases and immunotherapy response

14 Aug 2023 | Cell Stress | 7(8):59-68
Merrill, Joseph, Inguscio, Alessandra, Chung, Taemoon, Demestichas, Breanna, Garcia, Libia, Habel, Jill, Lewis, David, Janowitz, Tobias, Lyons, Scott

Cystatin C is glucocorticoid responsive, directs recruitment of Trem2+ macrophages, and predicts failure of cancer immunotherapy

9 Aug 2023 | Cell Genomics | 3(8):100347
Kleeman, Sam, Thakir, Tuba, Demestichas, Breanna, Mourikis, Nicholas, Loiero, Dominik, Ferrer, Miriam, Bankier, Sean, Riazat-Kesh, Yosef, Lee, Hassal, Chantzichristos, Dimitrios, Regan, Claire, Preall, Jonathan, Sinha, Sarthak, Rosin, Nicole, Yipp, Bryan, de Almeida, Luiz, Biernaskie, Jeff, Dufour, Antoine, Tober-Lau, Pinkus, Ruusalepp, Arno, Bjorkegren, Johan, Ralser, Markus, Kurth, Florian, Demichev, Vadim, Heywood, Todd, Gao, Qing, Johannsson, Gudmundur, Koelzer, Viktor, Walker, Brian, Meyer, Hannah, Janowitz, Tobias

Restoring adiponectin via rosiglitazone ameliorates tissue wasting in mice with lung cancer

2 Aug 2023 | bioRxiv
Langer, Henning, Ramsamooj, Shakti, Dantas, Ezequiel, Murthy, Anirudh, Ahmed, Mujmmail, Hwang, Seo-Kyoung, Grover, Rahul, Pozovskiy, Rita, Liang, Roger, Queiroz, Andre, Brown, Justin, White, Eileen, Janowitz, Tobias, Goncalves, And

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