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Thomas Powles


Thomas Powles

University of London and Barts Cancer Centre

United Kingdom

Thomas Powles is a Professor of urology cancer at the University of London (2012 onwards) and the Director of Barts Cancer Centre (2017 onwards), which is one of the UKs largest Cancer Centres with over 4000 new cancer patients per year and a CRUK Major Cancer Centre. He trained as an Oncologist at Imperial College. His MD thesis from the University of London was on mechanisms of resistance to systemic therapy in urology cancer.

Prof. Powles has had a major role in the development of biomarkers and new drug strategies in urology cancers. This includes multiple EMA and FDA approvals. Notably, front line immune/targeted therapy combinations in RCC, immune checkpoint inhibitions alone or in combination in bladder cancer and antibody drug conjugates in urothelial cancer. His biomarker work has resulted in a greater understanding of resistance to immune therapy (TGFb), personalised therapy in bladder cancer (PD-L1, CD8) and renal cancer (MET) and the development of circulating biomarkers (ctDNA). He has authored 10 NEJM or Lancet publications with two first author NEJM publications and 2 first author Nature publications. He authors over 40 peer-reviewed publications per annum. He has presented plenary data at major global meetings. 
Prof. Powles has led many clinical trials (including 21 randomised trials) and translational oncology projects that have appeared in the major journals. He leads both university led and pharmaceutical company sponsored work in equal balance. His grant income over the last 10 years for university sponsored studies is over £15 million. He has presented plenary data at ASCO 2020 and was awarded the Bladder Cancer annual award at ASCO/GU in 2018.

He has an active role on social media with over 50,000 listens to podcasts he co-leads (Uromigos) and over 3000 followers on Twitter. His ‘ASCO Post’ video was the most viewed in 2020. Prof. Powles is currently Editor-in-Chief of Annals of Oncology and a member of the ESMO Council. He previously led the ESMO guidelines for non-GU prostate cancer (2020-2023). He is a member of the EAU renal cancer guidelines. He is the track chair for non-prostate GU cancer in 2021 (Paris). He has previously participated in the steering committee for the educational and scientific tracks for ESMO, ESMO IO, ESMO Asia and EMUC. He mentors five clinicians and has supervised 10 PhDs or MDs. He leads a clinical trials team.

His current work focuses on early bladder and kidney cancer with novel adjuvant/neoadjuvant therapies and the identification of patients at risk of relapse after surgery.

Last update: February 2024

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