Daniel J. Powell Jr., PhD

Daniel J. Powell Jr., PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania

Dr. Daniel Powell Jr. is an Associate Professor in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine with a secondary appointment in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Powell is also a member of the Abramson Cancer Center and Penn’s Ovarian Cancer Research Center (OCRC) within the Center for Research on Reproduction & Women’s Health.

Dr. Powell is a cancer immunologist, well-recognized for his detailed investigations of the immunobiology of cancer, patient T cell responses in the control of their cancer, and the use of translational immunotherapy for effective cancer treatment. His research team is pioneering innovative immunotherapeutic strategies, including tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte-based therapeutics, genetically-modified T cell therapy, dendritic cell-based cancer vaccination and antibody-based immune checkpoint inhibition for the treatment of gynecologic and other cancers. These approaches empower a patient’s own immune cells to seek out and destroy their cancer.

Dr. Powell has served as the Deputy Director of PENN’s Cell and Vaccine Production Facility (CVPF) within the Abramson Cancer Center and the Director of the Clinical Tumor Tissue Facility (CTTF), in support of multiple Phase I and II immunotherapy trials. He is the IND sponsor for the clinical application of T cell-based cancer immunotherapy, and has aided in the clinical application of adoptive lymphocyte immunotherapy, immunomodulation and cancer vaccination in various cancer types.

Prior to his recruitment to Penn, he and his colleagues developed novel combinatorial approaches for tumor vaccination, investigated the role of immunosuppressive regulatory T cells in cancer, and successfully applied adoptive T cell immunotherapy for the treatment of metastatic melanoma at the Surgery Branch at the National Cancer Institute, NIH.

Dr. Powell serves on various grant review committees, including those for the NIH and NHLBI’s PACT, scientific advisory boards for industry, as well as academic committees within the University. His research excellence has been recognized by multiple awards including the American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy’s Outstanding New Investigator Award, and multiple NIH Exceptional performance Awards.