Saad A. Khan, MD is a medical oncologist focused on the treatment of head and neck, thyroid and lung cancers. His research interests include therapeutic clinical trials as well as mechanisms of reducing toxicities that patients experience. His research activities include ongoing clinical trials of targeted and immune therapy in aggressive thyroid malignancies. He is a member of the NRG Head and Neck Committee, the ECOG Head and Neck Core and Thoracic Committees and the National Cancer Institute’s Head and Neck Steering Committee Rare Tumor Task Force.

When not in clinic or the hospital he enjoys spending time with his family and 3 children, hiking and sitting on the beach.

Clinical Focus

  • Medical Oncology

Academic Appointments

Professional Education

  • Board Certification: American Board of Internal Medicine, Hematology (2015)
  • Board Certification: American Board of Internal Medicine, Medical Oncology (2012)
  • Fellowship: Temple University Cancer Center Hematology and Oncology Fellowship (2012) PA
  • Board Certification: American Board of Internal Medicine, Internal Medicine (2009)
  • Residency: University of Massachusetts Internal Medicine Residency (2009) MA
  • Cinical Post-Doctoral Fellow, Temple University-Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, PA (2012)
  • Internship: Mayo Clinic General Surgery Residency (2006) MN
  • Resident, University of Massachusetts Medical Center, Worcester, MA (2009)
  • Medical Education: Faisalabad Medical University (2003) Pakistan
  • Internship, Mayo Graduate School of Medical Education, Rochester, MN (2006)
  • MD, Punjab Medical College, Faisalabad, Pakistan (2003)

Clinical Trials

  • Abemaciclib in Metastatic or Locally Advanced Anaplastic/Undifferentiated Thyroid Cancer Recruiting

    The purpose of the study is to evaluate the efficacy of treatment with abemaciclib in patients with anaplastic thyroid/undifferentiated thyroid

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  • Dosing of Brentuximab Vedotin for Mycosis Fungoides, Sezary Syndrome Patients Recruiting

    The purpose of this study is to test any good and bad effects of the study drug called brentuximab vedotin at a lower dose than is FDA-approved.

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All Publications

  • Genomic Analysis of Salivary Gland Cancer and Treatment of Salivary Gland Cancers. Surgical pathology clinics Palsgrove, D., Allahabadi, S., Khan, S. A. 2021; 14 (1): 151–63


    Salivary gland cancer is a heterogenous group of tumors that presents challenges with both diagnosis and therapy. Recent advances in the classification of salivary gland cancers have led to distinct histologic and genomic criteria that successfully differentiate between cancers with similar clinical behavior and appearance. Genomic abnormalities have led to the emergence of targeted therapies being used in their therapy with drastic improvements in outcomes as well as reductions in treatment-related toxicity. Dramatic results seen with molecular targets, such as HER2, TRK, and others, indicate that this approach has the potential to yield even better treatments for the future.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.path.2020.10.001

    View details for PubMedID 33526219

  • Survivin expression and impact on head and neck cancer outcomes. Oral oncology Khan, S. A., Burke, M., Zhu, F., Yang, D., Dubyk, C., Mehra, R., Lango, M. J., Ridge, J. A., Sher, D. J., Burtness, B. 2020; 112: 105049


    INTRODUCTION: Survivin is an inhibitor of apoptosis that is proposed as a target for anti-cancer therapy because of its high expression in cancer cells. It has potential as a prognostic and predictive biomarker of response to radiation and systemic therapies. We report its expression in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) and its correlation with treatment response and survival.METHODS: We measured survivin protein expression in tumor specimens from 96 patients with HNSCC treated at Fox Chase Cancer Center, of whom 21 were p16+. Quantitative automated immunofluorescence was employed to score nuclear and cytoplasmic survivin in 5 tissue microarrays (TMAs) consisting of 316 H&N tumor cores and 107 control tissue cores. Survivin levels were then correlated to therapy response and survival outcomes.RESULTS: Using the median score as the cutoff, overall survival (OS) was significantly shorter for the group expressing higher survivin in nuclear (p=0.013), cytoplasmic (p=0.018) and total compartments (p=0.006). No correlation was seen between survivin expression and patient sex or grade of tumor, T or N stage, or p16 status. Survivin expression in metastases did not significantly differ from that in primary tumors. Levels of p53 expression showed a significant positive correlation with higher survivin expression in the cytoplasm (p=0.0264) and total compartments (p=0.0264), but not in the nucleus (p=0.0729).CONCLUSIONS: Survivin expression above the median is associated with shorter overall survival in HNSCC, including for patients treated with chemotherapy or radiation. p16 expression did not correlate with survivin levels.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.oraloncology.2020.105049

    View details for PubMedID 33221541

  • Safety and Efficacy of Andecaliximab (GS-5745) Plus Gemcitabine and Nab-Paclitaxel in Patients with Advanced Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma: Results from a Phase I Study. The oncologist Bendell, J. n., Sharma, S. n., Patel, M. R., Windsor, K. S., Wainberg, Z. A., Gordon, M. n., Chaves, J. n., Berlin, J. n., Brachmann, C. B., Zavodovskaya, M. n., Liu, J. n., Thai, D. n., Bhargava, P. n., Shah, M. A., Khan, S. A., Starodub, A. n. 2020


    Matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP9) expression in the tumor microenvironment is implicated in multiple protumorigenic processes. Andecaliximab (GS-5745), a monoclonal antibody targeting MMP9 with high affinity and selectivity, was evaluated in combination with gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel in patients with advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma.This phase I study was completed in two parts: part A was a dose-finding, monotherapy phase that enrolled patients with advanced solid tumors, and part B examined andecaliximab in combination with chemotherapy in specific patient cohorts. In the cohort of patients with pancreatic adenocarcinoma (n = 36), andecaliximab 800 mg every 2 weeks was administered in combination with gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel. Patients were treated until unacceptable toxicity, withdrawal of consent, disease progression, or death. Efficacy, safety, and biomarker assessments were performed.Andecaliximab combined with gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel appeared to be well tolerated and did not demonstrate any unusual toxicities in patients with pancreatic adenocarcinoma. The most common treatment-emergent adverse events were fatigue (75.0%), alopecia (55.6%), peripheral edema (55.6%), and nausea (50.0%). Median progression-free survival was 7.8 months (90% confidence interval, 6.9-11.0) with an objective response rate of 44.4% and median duration of response of 7.6 months. Maximal andecaliximab target binding, defined as undetectable, andecaliximab-free MMP9 in plasma, was observed.Andecaliximab in combination with gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel demonstrates a favorable safety profile and clinical activity in patients with advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma.The combination of andecaliximab, a novel, first-in-class inhibitor of matrix metalloproteinase 9, with gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel in patients with advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma provided a median progression-free survival of 7.8 months and objective response rate of 44.4%. The majority of systemic biomarkers related to matrix metalloproteinase 9 activity and immune suppression increased at 2 months, whereas biomarkers related to tumor burden decreased. Although this study demonstrates promising results with andecaliximab plus chemotherapy in patients with advanced pancreatic adenocarcinoma, andecaliximab was not associated with a survival benefit in a phase III study in patients with advanced gastric/gastroesophageal junction carcinoma.

    View details for DOI 10.1634/theoncologist.2020-0474

    View details for PubMedID 32812320

  • A phase 2 study of tarloxotinib bromide (TRLX) in patients (Pts) with recurrent or metastatic (R/M) squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN) or skin (SCCS). Rischin, D., Boyer, M. J., Brzezniak, C. E., Colevas, A., Doebele, R., Gilbert, J., Gitlitz, B., Khan, S. A., Mehra, R., Seiwert, T. Y., Kroll, S., Pearce, T. E., Liu, S. V. AMER SOC CLINICAL ONCOLOGY. 2016