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Erica Goddard

Erica Goddard (they/them) has a background in cancer, metastasis, immunology, and T cell-based immunotherapies. They received a B.S. in Microbiology from the University of Kansas in 2004. During this time they gained experience in a research lab studying herpesviruses. They went on to earn a PhD in Cancer Research from Oregon Health and Sciences University in 2017 while working in the lab of Dr. Pepper Schedin. Erica's PhD work focused on understanding the high rate of metastasis and death observed in patients diagnosed with postpartum breast cancer. They discovered a novel biology of the liver, namely that the liver undergoes tissue involution following cessation of lactation in rodents. This involution establishes a pro-metastatic environment in the liver for a period of time post-weaning that may explain the increased risk for liver metastasis observed in postpartum breast cancer patients. After this work Erica went on to complete a postdoctoral fellowship in Dr. Cyrus Ghajar's laboratory at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. During their postdoc, Erica studied breast cancer dormancy at metastatic sites and determined that numerous T cell-based immunotherapy platforms, including engineered T cells and T cell-based vaccine approaches, are highly effective at clearing dormant disseminated disease in rodent models. In their free time Erica enjoys photography, rock climbing, and alpine mountaineering.