Faculty

Peter Kuhn, Ph.D.
Dean’s Professor of Biological Sciences
Professor of Medicine
Professor of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering & Biomedical Engineering
Associate Director, The Bridge@USC

Peter Kuhn is a scientist and entrepreneur with a career long commitment in personalized medicine and individualized patient care. He is focused on the redesign of cancer care. Kuhn’s research team in physics oncology has discovered new ways of how cancer spreads to the human body and is using those breakthroughs to impact patient care.

Dr. Kuhn is the Dean’s Professor of Biological Sciences and Professor of Medicine and Engineering at USC, a founding member of the Michelson Center for Convergent Biosciences, a co-founder of The Bridge@USC and director of the Southern California Physics Oncology Center. Dr. Kuhn’s strategy is to advance our understanding of the human body to improve the human condition. His research is shedding new light at how cancer spreads through the body. This new science will lead to a personalized care strategy that is biologically informed and clinically actionable.

Dr. Kuhn is a physicist who trained initially at the Julius Maximilians Universität Würzburg, Germany, before receiving his Masters in Physics at the University of Albany, Albany, NY in 1993 and his Ph.D. in 1995. He then moved to Stanford University where he later joined the faculties of Medicine and Accelerator Physics. From 2002 to 2014, he established a translational science program at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, CA bringing together over forty scientists from basic, engineering and medical sciences to work on understanding the spread of cancer in the human body. He has published over 200 peer-reviewed scientific articles and patents as a result of his research. He founded Epic Sciences, Inc. in 2009 to develop cancer diagnostic products. Today Epic Sciences is a premier partner to most pharmaceutical and biotech companies in the development of precision companion diagnostics for cancer care.

James Hicks, Ph.D.
Research Professor of Biological Sciences
Research Professor, The Bridge@USC

Dr. Hicks is a pioneer of single cell genomics and translational cancer research with a focus in breast and prostate cancer. He is focused on the development and implementation of high content single cell assays to understand the spatial and temporal evolution of cancer in the human body.  He is an experienced academic researcher and corporate entrepreneur with a long history of translating science into useful products having published over one hundred scientific papers and patents, as well as having started a number of companies.

His ground breaking developments in single cell genomics have enabled the routine whole genome analysis of individual cells that he initially applied to solid tumor biopsies until, in 2012, he started work with Dr. Kuhn to utilize the combined technologies as a high density single cell analysis framework across all solid and liquid biopsies. This work is rapidly becoming the standard in research focused on the spatial and temporal evolution of cancer.

His future work at The Bridge@USC will expand on this theme to understand a broad range of systemic diseases including cancer, cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes, which all suffer from similar challenges of poorly understand disease evolution under natural and therapeutic pressures.

Dr. Hicks is a geneticist who trained initially at the University of Oregon and built his career with research and faculty appointments at Cornell University and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories, as well as a broad range of industrial leadership positions. In addition to his appointment at The Bridge@USC, Hicks is also an adjunct professor of medicine at the Charles University of Prague.