Dr. Ferris's research is focused on cellular immune mechanisms of dendritic cells (DC) and T lymphocyte activation against head and neck cancer (HNC) tumor antigens. In addition his group studies immune responses induced by EGFR-specific mAb, cetuximab in cancer patients. His laboratory also investigates the role of inflammatory signals in chemokine receptor 7 (CCR7) expression of metastatic head and neck cancer. His laboratory is funded by two R01 grants, the first studying the role of CCR7 in inflammation associated head and neck carcinogenesis, and the second R01 focused on cellular immune mechanisms of DC and T lymphocyte activation induced by EGFR-specific mAb, cetuximab in cancer patients. He is also PI/Project Leader for a recently completed phase I/II, DC-based cancer vaccine trial targeting p53, funded by the Head and Neck SPORE NCI P50 grant. This completed trial is being monitored at the UPCI. His laboratory is focused on mechanisms of tumor antigen processing and immunologic evasion used by head and neck cancer cells, which are translated into phase I and phase II immunotherapy trials. Dr. Ferris has been PI on several clinical trials of immunotherapy, vaccines, and translational science based on DC, peptides or monoclonal antibodies.