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Dr. Raffit Hassan

Dr. Raffit Hassan

Head, Solid Tumor Immunotherapy Section Senior Investigator

Medical oncologist Dr. Raffit Hassan at the National Cancer Institute is a specialist in pleural mesothelioma and a research leader in developing new ways to treat it more effectively.

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About Raffit Hassan

  • Peritoneal Mesothelioma icon

    Peritoneal Mesothelioma

  • Pleural and Lung Cancer icon

    Pleural and Lung Cancer

  • Immunotherapy icon


  • Research Excellence icon

    Excellence in Research

  • Gene Therapy icon

    Gene Therapy

Dr. Raffit Hassan is a medical oncologist and senior investigator at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland, specializing in thoracic malignancies such as pleural mesothelioma.

Hassan has been a leader in developing and implementing the latest in immunotherapy treatments for lung cancer, mesothelioma and pancreatic cancer.

The National Cancer Institute, which is part of the National Institutes of Health, provides the vast resources for research that often are not available anywhere else, attracting patients from around the country.

His clinical trials, and the immunotoxins being utilized, have broken new ground in achieving tumor regression for his patients with various diseases.

Hassan has spent almost 20 years serving at the National Cancer Institute, determined to make a difference in the field of treatment. His laboratory focuses on finding more effective molecular targets to fight cancer.

Dr. Raffit Hassan’s Experience & Medical Education

  • National Cancer Institute

  • University of Oklahoma College of Medicine

  • National Cancer Institute (Fellowship)

  • Sisters Hospital, University of Buffalo (Residency)

  • University of Kashmir, India (Medical degree)

  • American Board of Thoracic Surgery (Thoracic and cardiac surgery certification)

Awards and Other Recognitions

  • ASCO Career Development Award

  • NIH Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award

  • Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation Pioneer Award Mesothelioma Guide

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Mesothelioma Clinical Trials Under Dr. Raffit Hassan

  • A phase II clinical trial studying the efficacy of Lynparza (olaparib), a protein inhibitor, on patients with either pleural or peritoneal mesothelioma. The drug already is being used effectively for breast and ovarian cancer and has shown promise in the laboratory with treating mesothelioma tumor cells.

  • A phase II clinical trial for either pleural or peritoneal patients that will try to determine if LMB-100, an immunotoxin targeting the protein mesothelin, can increase the effectiveness of Keytruda (pembrolizumab), which is being used with several different cancers.

  • A phase III clinical trial to help investigators better understand how, and why, mutated genes can lead to various cancers, including mesothelioma. They will be studying the BAP1 gene, often mutated at birth. Tumor tissue from previous surgeries will be used.

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Publications of Dr. Raffit Hassan

  • Pastan, I., Hassan, R. (2014, June 1). Discovery of mesothelin and exploiting it as a target for mesothelioma. Cancer Research.

  • Hassan, R. et al. (2013, October 23). Major Cancer Regressions in Mesothelioma After Treatment with an Anti-Mesothelin Immunotoxin and Immune Suppression. Science Translational Medicine.

  • Hassan, R. et al. (2010, December 15). Phase I Clinical Trial of the Chimeric Anti-Mesothelin Monoclonal Antibody MORAb-009 in Patients with Mesothelin-Expressing Cancer. Clinical Cancer Research.

Disclaimer: Dr. Raffit Hassan has no professional affiliation with

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Tim Povtak is an award-winning writer with more than 30 years of reporting national and international news. His specialty is interviewing top mesothelioma specialists and researchers, reporting the latest news at mesothelioma cancer centers and talking with survivors and caregivers.

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1 Cited Article Sources

The sources on all content featured in The Mesothelioma Center at include medical and scientific studies, peer-reviewed studies and other research documents from reputable organizations.

  1. interview with Raffit Hassan, M.D. (2011, November 14).

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Last Modified August 7, 2020

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