Roland B. Walter, MD, PhD, MS

Roland B. Walter, MD, PhD, MS

Associate Member
Clinical Research Division
Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Hematology
University of Washington School of Medicine
Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health
University of Washington

Education and Training

Medical School, University of Zürich, Switzerland (Diplome Federal; 1990-96)
M.D., Faculty of Medicine, University of Zürich, Switzerland (1997)
Resident, Internal Medicine, Rätisches Kantons- und Regionalspital, Chur, Switzerland (1997-99)
Resident, Internal Medicine, University Hospital, Zürich, Switzerland (1999-02)
Ph.D., University of Washington, Seattle, WA (2006)
Research Fellow, Clinical Research Division, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA (2002-08)
Fellow, Division of Hematology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA (2005-07)
M.S. (Epidemiology, Clinical Research), University of Washington, Seattle, WA (2011)

Clinical Interest

Acute Myeloid Leukemia

Research Interest

Research is focused on the the preclinical and early clinical development and characterization of novel antigen-directed immunotherapies for AML, the conduct of trials testing novel treatments and innovative care approaches for AML patients, and approaches to develop and improve diagnostic and prognostic tools in AML.

Research Description

Our research is focused on human acute myeloid leukemia (AML). We are particularly interested in the delineation of the clonal origin of AML, the molecular and phenotypic characterization of AML stem and progenitor cells, and the interaction between AML cells and their environment. An overarching goal of these laboratory-based studies is the development of targeted treatments aimed to eradicate disease-relevant AML cells, with CD33-directed therapies being one important example for our efforts. We are also involved in the early testing of novel drugs and innovative care approaches in patients with AML. Finally, we participate in collaborative projects utilizing large datasets that aim to improve diagnostic and prognostic tools in AML or, together with epidemiologists, study risk factors for the development of this hematological malignancy.

Clinical Trials

Liposomal Cytarabine and Daunorubicin (CPX-351) for Adults with Untreated High-Risk MDS and Non-APL AML at High Risk of Treatment-Related Mortality
Study Number: 2642.00

A Phase 1/2 Trial of G-CSF, Cladribine, Cytarabine, and Dose-Escalated Mitoxantrone (G-CLAM) in Adults with Newly Diagnosed or Relapsed/Refractory Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) or High-Risk Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS)
Study Number: 2734.00

A Phase 1b Dose-Escalation Study of SGN-CD33A in Combination with Standard-of-Care for Patients with Newly Diagnosed Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML)
Study Number: 9233

A Multicenter Open-Label Phase 2a Study of Ibrutinib Monotherapy or in Combination With either Cytarabine or Azacitidine in Subjects with Acute Myeloid Leukemia
Study Number: 9312

A Safety and Tolerability Trial of Crenolanib and Chemotherapy with Cytarabine and Anthracyclines in Patients with Newly Diagnosed Acute Myeloid Leukemia with FLT3 Activating Mutations
Study Number: 9351

A Phase 1 First-In-Human Study Evaluating the Safety, Tolerability, Pharmacokinetics, Pharmacodynamics and Efficacy of AMG 330 Administered as Continuous Intravenous Infusion in Subjects with Relapsed/Refractory Acute Myeloid Leukemia
Study Number: 9382

A Phase 1/2 Study of SL-401 as Consolidation Therapy for Adult Patients with Adverse Risk Acute Myeloid Leukemia in First CR, and/or Evidence of Minimal Residual Disease (MRD) in First CR
Study Number: 9498

Open-label, Dose-escalation, Multicenter Study to Evaluate the Tolerability, Safety, Pharmacokinetics, and Activity of ADCT-301 in Patients with Relapsed or Refractory CD25-positive Acute Myeloid Leukemia or CD25-positive Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia
Study Number: 9513

A phase 1 study of SGN-CD123A in patients with relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia (AML)
Study Number: 9653

Selected Publications

Walter RB, Othus M, Burnett AK, Löwenberg B, Kantarjian HM, Ossenkoppele GJ, Hills RK, Ravandi F, Pabst T, Evans A, Pierce SR, Vekemans M-C, Appelbaum FR, Estey EH. Resistance prediction in AML: analysis of 4,601 patients from MRC/NCRI, HOVON/SAKK, SWOG, and MD Anderson Cancer Center. Leukemia. 2014; Epub ahead of print August 12, 2014.

Walter RB, Laszlo GS, Lionberger JM, Pollard JA, Harrington KH, Gudgeon CJ, Othus M, Rafii S, Meshinchi S, Appelbaum FR, Bernstein ID. Heterogeneity of clonal expansion and maturation-linked mutation acquisition in hematopoietic progenitors in human acute myeloid leukemia. Leukemia. 2014;28(10):1969-1977.

Laszlo GS, Gudgeon CJ, Harrington KH, Dell’Aringa J, Newhall KJ, Means GD, Sinclair AM, Kischel R, Frankel SR, Walter RB. Cellular determinants for preclinical activity of a novel CD33/CD3 bispecific T-cell engager (BiTE) antibody, AMG 330, against human AML. Blood. 2014;123(4):554-561.

Kung Sutherland MS, Walter RB, Jeffrey SC, Burke PJ, Yu C, Kostner H, Stone I, Ryan MC, Sussman D, Lyon RP, Zeng W, Harrington KH, Klussman K, Westendorf L, Meyer D, Bernstein ID, Senter PD, Benjamin DR, Drachman JG, McEarchern JA. SGN-CD33A: a novel CD33-targeting antibody-drug conjugate utilizing a pyrrolobenzodiazepine dimer is active in models of drug-resistant AML. Blood. 2013;122(8):1455-1463.

Walter RB, Othus M, Burnett AK, Löwenberg B, Kantarjian HM, Ossenkoppele GJ, Hills RK, van Montfort KGM, Ravandi F, Evans A, Pierce SR, Appelbaum FR, Estey EH. Significance of FAB subclassification of “acute myeloid leukemia, not otherwise specified” in the 2008 WHO classification: analysis of 5848 newly diagnosed patients. Blood. 2013;121(13):2424-2431.

Walter RB, Appelbaum FR, Estey EH, Bernstein ID. Acute myeloid leukemia stem cells and CD33-targeted immunotherapy. Blood. 2012;119(26):6198-6208.

Walter RB, Othus M, Borthakur G, Ravandi F, Cortes JE, Pierce SA, Appelbaum FR, Kantarjian HM, Estey EH. Prediction of early death following induction therapy for newly diagnosed acute myeloid leukemia with pretreatment risk scores: a novel paradigm for treatment assignment. J Clin Oncol. 2011;29(33):4417-4424.

Walter RB, Milano F, Brasky TM, White E. Long-term use of acetaminophen, aspirin, and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and risk of hematologic malignancies: results from the prospective VITamins and Lifestyle (VITAL) study. J Clin Oncol. 2011;29(17):2424-2431.

Walter RB, Gooley TA, Wood BL, Milano F, Fang M, Sorror ML, Estey EH, Salter AI, Lansverk E, Chien JW, Gopal AK, Appelbaum FR, Pagel JM. Impact of pre-transplant minimal residual disease, as detected by multiparametric flow cytometry, on outcome of myeloablative hematopoietic cell transplantation for acute myeloid leukemia. J Clin Oncol. 2011;29(9):1190-1197.

Walter RB, Alonzo TA, Gerbing RB, Ho PA, Smith FO, Raimondi SC, Hirsch BA, Gamis AS, Franklin JL, Hurwitz CA, Loken MR, Meshinchi S. High expression of the very late antigen (VLA)-4 integrin independently predicts reduced risk of relapse and improved outcome in pediatric acute myeloid leukemia: a report from the Children’s Oncology Group. J Clin Oncol. 2010;28(17):2831-2838.

Walter RB, Kantarjian HM, Huang X, Pierce SA, Sun Z, Gundacker HM, Ravandi F, Faderl SH, Tallman MS, Appelbaum FR, Estey EH. The effect of complete remission (CR) and CR with incomplete platelet recovery (CRp) on outcome in acute myeloid leukemia: a combined Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG), Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG), and M.D. Anderson Cancer Center study. J Clin Oncol. 2010;28(10):1766-1771.

Walter RB, Gooley TA, van der Velden VHJ, Loken MR, van Dongen JJM, Flowers DA, Bernstein ID, Appelbaum FR. CD33 expression and P-glycoprotein-mediated drug efflux inversely correlate and predict clinical outcome in patients with acute myeloid leukemia treated with gemtuzumab ozogamicin monotherapy. Blood. 2007;109(10):4168-4170.

Walter RB, Raden BW, Kamikura DM, Cooper JA, Bernstein ID. Influence of CD33 expression levels and ITIM-dependent internalization on gemtuzumab ozogamicin-induced cytotoxicity. Blood. 2005:105(3):1295-1302.


Contact Information

(206) 667-3599
(206) 667-6519
Additional contact

Office Address:

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
1100 Fairview Ave., N. D2-190
Seattle, WA  98109-1024