Dr. Levis’ laboratory research focuses on the development of molecularly targeted therapies for leukemia. Currently, he is actively involved in the pre-clinical and clinical development of small molecule inhibitors of the receptor tyrosine kinase, FLT3. The research involves studying the biochemical effects of these inhibitors on primary blast samples from leukemia patients. In addition, the NOD/SCID mouse is used as a model system to study the leukemia stem cell and its response to FLT3 inhibitors.
- Levis, M., Tse, K-F., Smith, B.D., Garrett, E., and Small, D. (2001). A FLT3 tyrosine kinase inhibitor is cytotoxic to AML blasts harboring a FLT3/ITD mutation. Blood. 98:885.
- Levis, M., Allebach, J., Tse, K-F., Sheng, R., Baldwin, B.R., Smith, B.D., Jones-Bolin, S., Ruggeri, B., Dionne, C., and Small, D. (2002). A FLT3-targeted tyrosine kinase inhibitor is cytotoxic to leukemia cells in vitro and in vivo. Blood 99:3885.
- Smith, B.D., Levis, M., Beran, M., Giles, F., Brown, P., Russell, L., Hellriegel, E., Murphy, K., Dauses, T., Allebach, J., and Small, D. (2004) Single agent CEP-701, a novel FLT3 inhibitor, shows initial response in patients with refractory acute myeloid leukemia. Blood. 103:3669
- Levis, M. and Small, D. (2003). FLT3:ITDoes matter in leukemia. Leukemia. 17:1738.
- Murphy, K.M., Levis, M., Hafez, M.J., Geiger, T., Cooper, L.C., Smith, B.D., Small, D., and Berg, K.D. (2003). Detection of FLT3 internal tandem duplication and D835 mutations by a multiplex polymerase chain reaction and capillary electrophoresis assay. J Mol Diagn. 5: 96-102.
- Zheng, R., Levis, M, Piloto O, Brown P, Baldwin B., and Small, D. (2003) FLT3 ligand (FL) causes autocrine signaling in AML cells. Blood. 103:267.
- Levis, M., and Small, D. (2004). Small molecule FLT3 tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Current Pharmaceutical Design. 10:1183.