Our pathologists have extensive expertise in scoring a wide range of diagnostic assays in the context of clinical trials and biomarker testing. Pathologists receive regular training in both novel and approved scoring methods from the developers of companion diagnostics. In addition, the global team is part of an internal pathology quality program which delivers training, skills sharing and scoring alignment across our global pathology network.

Working in tight collaboration with the team of pathologists our team of imaging scientists consists of highly educated specialists with training in digital pathology, digital imaging, algorithm development, AI, FISH enumeration, and more. For areas of expertise not in-house, we work with many of our long-established consultants.

Mark Kockx, MD, PhD

Chief Medical & Scientific Officer

Mark Kockx, MD, PhD

Dr. Mark Kockx founded HistoGeneX Laboratories in 2001. At the University of Antwerp, Belgium, Dr. Kockx pioneered methodologies to elucidate apoptotic and cytostatic response of cancer patients after treatments with targeted therapies. His subsequent collaborations with global pharmaceutical companies led to the founding of HistoGeneX Laboratories.

Dr. Kockx is an internationally recognized pathologist-scientist who has operated on the forefront of personalized medicine developments. He continues to lead initiatives to standardize biomarker analysis practices in addition to adapting novel technologies. Dr. Kockx has been extensively involved with the clinical trials that led to the approval of well-known targeted therapies such as EGFR, BRAF and MEK inhibitors. His current passions are twofold. He is introducing practices and workflows for next generation IHC, combining innovations of multiplex staining, quantification and image capture. He has also developed an Immunomics program, a state-of-the-art biomarker program that supports the evolving and numerous needs of immunotherapy development.

José Manuel Archuleta, MD

José Manuel Archuleta, MD

Dr. Jose M. Archuleta is a certified clinical-surgical pathologist and hematopathologist, with more than 10 years of experience in surgical pathology, currently working in CellCarta’s pathology department. He obtained his specialist degree in University Hospital of Gerona, Spain, and master’s degree in molecular oncology by University of Rey Juan Carlos in Madrid. During his career he has worked in various countries including Spain, Norway, NL, Aruba, and Curacao.

Paula Lopez Arias, MD

Paula Lopez Arias, MD

Dr. López is a surgical pathologist from Colombia who currently works in CellCarta’s pathology department. She attended the Caldas University of Manizales (Colombia) where she received her medical degree in 2005 and her certified pathologist title from Cauca University (Popayan – Colombia) in 2012. Dr. López received her master’s degree in molecular oncology from CEB Madrid in 2017. She has strong interests in oncopathology, molecular pathology, and digital pathology and has expertise in gastrointestinal biopsies.

Joanna Askren, MD

Joanna Askren, MD

Dr. Askren is a pathologist board certified in forensic, anatomic, and clinical pathology. Dr. Askren’s previous experience includes being a Forensic Pathologist for the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department. Dr. Askren received her undergraduate degree in Biomedical Sciences from the University of California, Riverside. She graduated from the biomedical sciences program with an M.D. degree from UCLA. She did a year of family medicine internship at Kaiser Permanente in Fontana. She completed her pathology residency at USC and her forensic pathology fellowship at the Los Angeles Department of Coroner. After leaving forensic pathology, she completed a surgical pathology fellowship at Olive View – UCLA Medical Center.

Konstantinos Avraam, MD, PhD

Konstantinos Avraam, MD, PhD

Dr. Avraam is a surgical pathologist from Greece who currently works in CellCarta’s pathology department. Dr. Avraam attended the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece) where he earned his medical degree in 2004 and received his title of certified pathologist in Athens (Greece) in 2011. He obtained his PhD from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens in 2012. Dr. Avraam received his postgraduate training in dermatopathology in 2016 at the Evangelismos Hospital in Athens where he also completed his residency in Anatomic Pathology. His areas of expertise include oncopathology examining samples from the gastrointestinal, gynecological and central nervous system and mainly from skin tumors especially melanoma Dr. Avraam previously worked as a military doctor in the Department of Pathology in the 251 Hellenic Air Force hospital where he examined thousands of biopsy slides of different organs.

Gabriela Beniuga, MD

Gabriela Beniuga, MD

Dr. Gabriela Beniuga received in pathology certification in 2007 in Romania and has since been recognized for her work in Belgium. She began her work in CellCarta in May 2022 and has experience in biomarker development for immuno-oncology. Dr. Beniuga has further interests and expertise in gastrointestinal and uropathology.

Hassina Djedaimi, MD

Hassina Djedaimi, MD

Dr. Djedaimi has been a recognized pathologist since 2015 and currently works in CellCarta’s pathology department. She has a strong background in skin and gynecological pathology. Previously, she worked in UZ Brussel where she examined thousands of slides of breast and digestive pathology and regularly performed autopsies.

Al Zubi Fouad, MD

Al Zubi Fouad, MD

Dr. Fouad is an anatomic pathologist from Syria, working in CellCarta’s clinical pathology department since November 2017. His areas of expertise include oncopathology, ENT pathology and hematopathology. Dr. Fouad previously worked from 2015-2017 in the UCL Saint-Luc University Hospital in Brussels. He also has previous experience as chief of pathology in Saudi Arabia and assistant pathologist in Brugmann University Hospital in Brussels.

Ruben Gamez, MD

Ruben Gamez, MD

Dr. Gamez is board certified in hematopathology, anatomic and clinical pathology. Dr. Gamez’s previous experience includes Staff Hematopathologist and Assistant Laboratory Director for Plus Diagnostics, Staff Hematopathologist and Co-Laboratory Director at Specialty Laboratories, and Staff Pathologist at Georgetown University Hospital. Dr. Gamez obtained both his undergraduate degree and M.D. from the University of Arizona. He completed his pathology residency at the St. Joseph’s Hospital (Phoenix, AZ), with additional fellowship training in hematopathology at Georgetown University Hospital and a Donald West King fellowship at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP) in pulmonary pathology. Dr. Gamez also performed a rotation in lymph node pathology at the National Institute of Health /National Cancer Institute (NIH/NCI) under Dr. Elaine Jaffe.

Alfred Garcia, MD

Alfred Garcia, MD

Dr. Garcia is board certified in anatomic and clinical pathology. Prior to joining CellCarta, Dr. Garcia has worked as a Pathologist at BioPath Medical Group/Fountain Valley Regional Hospital, Foothill Regional Medical Center, Thousand Oaks Pathology Associates Diagnostics/Los Robles Medical Center, and the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at USC. Dr. Garcia obtained his undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences at UC Irvine, and his Medical Degree at USC’s Keck School of Medicine. He completed his anatomic and clinical pathology residency training and fellowships in surgical pathology and cytopathology at LA County/USC Medical Center.

Carlos F. Garcia, MD

Carlos F. Garcia, MD

Thomas Gevaert, MD, PhD

Dorothy Hayden, MD

Dorothy Hayden, MD

Dr. Dorothy Hayden obtained her medical doctorate at LSU Heath Science Center in Shreveport, Louisiana. She completed her pathology training at Ochsner Medical Foundation in New Orleans followed by a Surgical Pathology fellowship at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas. Dr. Hayden has approximately 18 years of hospital-based pathology experience and has served as the Interim Medical Director of Ochsner Medical Foundation, Baton Rouge. With a strong interest in cancer diagnosis and biology, Dr. Hayden took a position at Roche Molecular Solutions/Ventana in Tucson Arizona. Dr. Hayden attained the level of Principal Pathologist and served as the franchise lead for PD-L1 SP263 as well as other biomarkers. She has experience in early assay development, scoring of clinical trial cases, scoring algorithm development, Companion Diagnostics, and FDA submissions. She has a strong interest in digital pathology and has helped to pioneer the training platform used globally for clinical trials. Impressed with CellCarta’s global presence and expertise in clinical trials, Dr. Hayden continued her interests in personalized healthcare by focusing on clinical trial scoring, assay development, and digital pathology.

Ingrid Jarutat, MD

Ingrid Jarutat, MD

Dr. Jarutat is a board certified anatomical and surgical pathologist and board certified gynaecological cytologist with 20+ years of work experience in pathology.

In the patient care setting she worked as a Deputy Head of Pathology at a major teaching hospital and as a co-owner of a private pathology diagnostic lab. In parallel, she started working in pharmaceutical and biotech industry as a professional consultant.

After practicing pathology in several Certified Cancer Centres for breast, gynaecology, lung and urology she switched her focus to digital pathology with founding her own Consultancy Firm. Since 2009 she supports digital pathology activities through quality review of (routine and experimental) stainings and diagnostic expert review of slides. She is further regularly involved in the development process of image analysis algorithms and “AI-Apps” through cell marker annotation and segmentation, or through serving as a diagnostic reference for calibration of algorithms to improve specifity and sensitivity in multiplex or single stainings.

Dr. Jarutat works as an independent consultant for CellCarta since 2021.

Ibrahim Kassem, MD

Dr Ibrahim is an anatomic pathologist from Lebanon, who graduated from the Lebanese University, faculty of medical science in 2014. He is recognised as a medical doctor in Belgium. He is working in CellCarta’s clinical pathology department since March 2022.

He had a scholarship and a fellowship (ULB university) at the Institute Jules Bordet in Brussels between 2013 and 2015. During his fellowship at the Institute Jules Bordet, he grows his expertise in bone and soft tissue pathology and dermatopathology under the supervision of Dr Nicolas de Saint Aubin (soft tissue and bone pathology expert). Dr Ibrahim work since 2016 at the CMP laboratory in Brussels.

His areas of expertise include skin, soft tissue, and bone pathology.

Miriam Marichal, MD, PhD

Miriam Marichal, MD, PhD

Dr. Marichal has been with CellCarta since 2016 and is emeritus Professor of Pathology at Free Brussels University (VUB) and former Head of the Department of Pathology at VUB-University Hospital. During her academic career, she was responsible for the courses in General and in Surgical Pathology to graduate medical and biomedical students and for the postgraduate training of residents in pathology. Dr. Marichal has published several articles in the fields of pathology, diabetes, islet cells and transplantation. She has a particular interest in endocrine-, gastrointestinal- and uro-pathology. Dr. Marichal has served many years in the Executive Committee of the European Society of Pathology.

Nadia Naderi, MD

Nadia Naderi, MD

Dr. Naderi earned her medical degree from the University of Tehran Azad Medical Sciences in Iran and completed four years of residency in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology at Tehran University of Medical Sciences. After several years in pathology, she came to the United States and completed a residency in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. She completed her gastrointestinal and oncology surgical pathology fellowships at Boston University and Roswell Park Cancer Institute, respectively. She has previous experiences in gastrointestinal pathology at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, as well as a staff pathologist in private practices and Kaiser Permanente in California.

Emil Nakov, MD

Emil Nakov, MD

Dr. Nakov works in CellCarta’s clinical pathology department. His area of expertise is in oncopathology, examining samples from the breast, the lung, and the urogenital and gastrointestinal systems. He also specializes in neuroendocrine pathology. Previously, Dr. Nakov previously worked in the Department of Clinical Pathology in the Military Medical Academy of Bulgaria. He has examined thousands of biopsy and cytology slides and regularly performed intraoperative express examinations and autopsies.

TuDung Nguyen, MD, PhD

TuDung Nguyen, MD, PhD

Dr. Nguyen is an anatomic pathologist, hematopathologist and molecular pathologist who is board certified in anatomic pathology, hematopathology and molecular pathology. She received her B.S. at UC Irvine and completed a combined M.D./Ph.D. program at the USC Keck School of Medicine where she obtained her medical degree and doctorate in Biochemistry/Molecular Biology. She completed residency in Anatomic Pathology and fellowships in Surgical Pathology, Hematopathology and Molecular Genetic Pathology at Stanford University. She previously worked as a faculty member at Washington University School of Medicine where she also served as the Associate Director of the fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) laboratory and Program Director of the Hematopathology Fellowship; a Hematopathologist at Genzyme Genetics and CSI Laboratories; and the Medical Director of Cancer Genetics Inc. and Oncogene Diagnostics. She has 25+ years of cancer research experience and has published over 40 peer-reviewed papers plus book chapters on the topics of molecular pathology and cytogenetic FISH technologies.

Dieter Peeters, MD, PhD

Dieter Peeters, MD, PhD

Dr. Peeters is a surgical pathologist who joined CellCarta in August 2018. He received his medical degree from the University of Antwerp in 2009 after which he obtained a PhD in Medical Sciences from the same university. His PhD research focused on the isolation and molecular characterization of circulating tumour cells (CTCs) in patients with metastatic breast cancer. Dr. Peeters has strong interests in oncopathology, immuno-oncology, molecular pathology and digital pathology, including imaging analysis. Apart from his work at CellCarta, Dr. Peeters also works as a surgical pathologist for a clinical laboratory that provides pathology services for three hospitals in the wider Antwerp area.

Mary V. Schneck, MD, FCAP

Mary V. Schneck, MD, FCAP

Dr. Mary V. Schneck is an AP/CP Board certified pathologist (subspecialty board certified in cytopathology) with more than 31 years of diagnostic and applied research experience. She attended the Perelman School of Medicine followed by residency training in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology at the University of Pennsylvania, where she also completed a fellowship in cytopathology. She received her early training in immunohistochemistry as a Howard Hughes Medical Institute – NIH Research Scholar in the laboratory of Immunology and Tumor Biology at the NIH. Dr. Schneck went on to practice diagnostic surgical pathology and cytopathology for 27 years (with a special interest in gynecologic pathology) while maintaining a focus in biomarker analysis and molecular pathology. Since 2016, she has dedicated her expertise to the discovery and validation of novel treatments as a CellCarta pathologist.

Diana Stanoeva, MD, PhD

Diana Stanoeva, MD, PhD

Dr. Stanoeva came to CellCarta from the diagnostic pathology world challenged by the pathologist’s role and the impact of the pharmaceutical industry on the growing need of new responsibilities of pathologists in a field which links larger collaboration, provides feedback on pre-analytic factors, quality assurance, and develops testing algorithms. It is a welcome work shift that allows her to play outside the routine pathology lab and inside oncology as a whole. She holds a PhD on placental changes in pathological pregnancies.

Ghita Tagmouti, MD

Ghita Tagmouti, MD

Dr. Tagmouti is a clinical pathologist from Casablanca, Morocco. She received her Medical Degree from the Complutense University of Madrid in 2015 and her certified pathologist title from Hospital del Mar in Barcelona (Universitat Pompeu Fabra). Dr. Tagmouti worked as a surgical pathologist in a laboratory that offers pathology services in Wallonia and Brussels area. She has interests in breast pathology and gastrointestinal pathology. Her work at CellCarta includes histopathological evaluations, study of biomarkers related to immune-oncology therapies, assay development, support of the validation of algorithms and digital image analyses.

James Thompson, MD, PhD

Medical Director

James Thompson, MD, PhD

Dr. Thompson is a surgical and hematopathologist who is board certified in anatomic pathology. Dr. Thompson’s previous experience includes faculty positions at UC Irvine Medical School, Medical and Laboratory Director of Meyer Pharmaceuticals, Medical Director/Vice President of Technology Development at Impath, Medical Director of Oncotech, President and Medical Director of Pathogenesys, Medical Director of US LABS, Medical Director of Ambry Genetics, and Director of Hematopathology at Genoptix. Dr. Thompson obtained his undergraduate degree from University of California Irvine with his medical degree and doctorate in Microbiology and Molecular Genetics from University of California Irvine School of Medicine. He completed his pathology residency at the Stanford, with additional fellowship training in molecular pathology at Stanford and hematopathology at University of California Schools of Medicine.

Dino U. Vallera, MD, FCAP

Medical Director

Dino U. Vallera, MD, FCAP

Dr. Vallera attended the University of Chicago, and earned a bachelor’s degree in the Biological Sciences. He earned his medical degree at the University of Chicago’s Pritzker School of Medicine, where he also completed a residency in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology. Following residency, he completed a Fellowship in Cytopathology and Fine Needle Aspiration pathology at the University of Illinois Medical Center with Dr. Richard Mac DeMay. Dr. Vallera has been in private practice at AMITA Health Adventist Hinsdale and La Grange hospitals, Adventist Glen Oaks and Adventist Bolingbrook hospitals. He was the Regional Medical Director of the Adventist Midwest Laboratories from 2006 to 2019. He has also served in many leadership roles for the Medical Staff and was President of the Medical Staff (Chief of Staff) for AMITA Health Adventist Hinsdale and La Grange hospitals. Dr. Vallera was the medical director of the Quintiles Westmont Illinois laboratory from 2005 to 2012. He has also been a hospital and laboratory surveyor for the Joint Commission International.

Pieter-Jan Van Dam, MD, PhD

Molecular Pathologist

Pieter-Jan Van Dam, MD, PhD

Dr. Van Dam is a molecular pathologist who joined CellCarta in March 2018. He received his medical degree from the University of Leuven in 2013 after which he obtained a PhD in Medical Sciences from the University of Antwerp. His PhD research in Bioinformatics and Translational Oncology focused on the molecular, histopathological and radiologic profiling of the growth patterns of liver metastases in patients with metastatic cancer. Dr. van Dam has strong interests in bioinformatics and data analysis, molecular diagnostics, translational oncology and data integration in the context of oncological clinical trials. Apart from being molecular pathologist, Dr. van Dam also leads the bioinformatics team at CellCarta, supporting the genomics group and providing clinical data analysis capabilities.

Bharathi Vennapusa, MD

Natalia Bautista Vera

Natalia Bautista Vera

Dr. Bautista is a General Pathologist with more than ten years of experience in Surgical and Clinical Pathology. She has also worked extensively in the Legal Medicine field, performing many tasks common to forensic doctors such as autopsies, lesion reports, and corpse removal reports. She was an Associate Pathology Professor at the Medical University of Málaga for two years. Her lessons were held in the Autopsies room, using the actual surgical and clinical specimens.

Wim Waelput, MD, PhD

Zheng Yuan, MD

Zheng Yuan, MD

Zheng Yuan is a surgical pathologist and joined CellCarta in June 2020. He completed his medical education from Baotou Medical College and obtained a PhD in Pathology from Peking University. He worked as a pathologist in hospitals for 12 years, including 7 years in Cancer Hospital Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, engaged in diagnostic pathology and research, mainly solid tumor disease including lung, breast, thyroid, urinary, digestive tract and lymphoma etc.. In addition, before joining CellCarta, he worked for 6 years in the Anatomical Pathology (AP) laboratory of global CRO, focusing on biomarker detection. During this period, he was mainly responsible for establishing of laboratory methodology, including analysis/verification various of IHC, ISH, and real-time PCR biomarkers used in targeted therapy and immunotherapy projects. At the same time, he also participated in the evaluation of tumor markers for global and local clinical trials, including dozens of Companion Diagnostic studies.

Li-Jie Zhang, MD, PhD

Medical Director

Li-Jie Zhang, MD, PhD

Dr. Zhang completed her medical education at Beijing Medical University and Capital Medical University. She entered the pharmaceutical industry 12 years ago when a central lab set up the first anatomic pathology (AP) department in China. Dr. Zhang’s oncology drug development journey began with a breast cancer study, followed by various tumor studies including NSCLC, GC, CRC, UC, DLBCL, etc. as well as many companion diagnostic studies. The customers were top-30 global pharmaceutical companies with a gradual increasing presence of domestic Chinese companies.

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