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Professor Richard Kefford

Head of Department, Clinical Medicine and Head, Cancer Clinical Program

Clinical Medicine

Contact Details

Tel: (02) 9812 3961


F10A, Level 4, Room 407, 2 Technology Place, Macquarie University

Professor Richard Kefford (RK) was Founding Director of the Department of Medical Oncology at Westmead Hospital in 1986, the Familial Cancer Service at Westmead in 1992 and the Westmead Institute for Cancer Research (WICR) in 1996. WICR was one of three institutes that united to form the Westmead Millennium Institute in 1999, and RK was founding Deputy Director 1999-2013. He was a founding Member of Melanoma Institute Australia and Co-Director of Research since its inception. He was University of Sydney Professor of Medicine at Westmead Hospital 1998-2013. Since 2014, as Head of Clinical Medicine, he is playing a leading role in the design of the new global MD program at Macquarie University



Research Interests

Professor Kefford is a medical oncologist and clinico-laboratory investigator with principal interest in translational research in improving the medical management of melanoma, a disease that kills approximately 1800 Australians annually and takes a disproportionately high toll in young adults.

Select Publications 

1. Shi H, Hugo W, Kong X, Hong A, Koya RC, Moriceau G, Chodon T, Guo R, Johnson DB, Dahlman KB, Kelley MC, Kefford RF, Chmielowski B, Glaspy JA, Sosman JA, van Baren N, Long GV, Ribas A, Lo RS. Acquired resistance and clonal evolution in melanoma during BRAF inhibitor therapy. Cancer Discov. 2014;4(1):80-93. 

2. Robert C, Ribas A, Wolchok JD, Hodi FS, Hamid O, Kefford R, Weber JS, Joshua AM, Hwu WJ, Gangadhar TC, Patnaik A, Dronca R, Zarour H, Joseph RW, Boasberg P, Chmielowski B, Mateus C,Postow MA, Gergich K, Elassaiss-Schaap J, Li XN, Iannone R, Ebbinghaus SW, Kang SP, Daud A. Anti-programmed-death-receptor-1 treatment with pembrolizumab in ipilimumab-refractory advanced melanoma: a randomised dose-comparison cohort of a phase 1 trial. Lancet. 2014;384(9948):1109-17. 

3. Rizos H, Menzies AM, Pupo GM, Carlino MS, Fung C, Hyman J, Haydu LE, Mijatov B, Becker TM, Boyd SC, Howle J, Saw R, Thompson JF, Kefford RF, Scolyer RA, Long GV. BRAF inhibitor resistance mechanisms in metastatic melanoma: spectrum and clinical impact. Clin Cancer Res. 2014;20(7):1965-77. 

4. Hamid O, Robert C, Daud A, Hodi FS, Hwu WJ, Kefford R, Wolchok JD, Hersey P, Joseph RW, Weber JS, Dronca R, Gangadhar TC, Patnaik A, Zarour H, Joshua AM, Gergich K, Elassaiss-Schaap J, Algazi A, Mateus C, Boasberg P, Tumeh PC, Chmielowski B, Ebbinghaus SW, Li XN, Kang SP, Ribas A. Safety and tumour responses with lambrolizumab (anti-PD-1) in melanoma. N Engl J Med. 2013;369(2):134-44.

5. Wilmott JS, Long GV, Howle JR, Haydu LE, Sharma RN, Thompson JF, Kefford RF, Hersey P, Scolyer RA. Selective BRAF inhibitors induce marked T-cell infiltration into human metastatic melanoma. Clin Cancer Res. 2012;18(5):1386-94.

Recent Grant Success 

Professor Kefford has been CIA on an NHMRC Program Grant on melanoma susceptibility, prognosis and treatment since 2006 together with 6 other outstanding Australian melanoma leaders in surgery, pathology, immunology and molecular genetics. This Program has been successfully funded for 2016-2021 ($14.2m).

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