Dr. Arteaga is the director of the Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. He is also the associate dean of oncology programs. An international leader in the field of breast cancer research, Dr. Arteaga has contributed to the understanding of breast cancer initiation, progression, and metastasis by identifying and characterizing key molecular pathways dysregulated in this disease. He was the first to report the role of IGF-I receptors and transforming growth factor – (TGF-β) in breast cancer and their use as therapeutic targets. He demonstrated that TGF-β, in addition to contributing to breast carcinogenesis, is also capable of driving epithelial to mesenchymal transition, establishment of metastasis, expansion of cancer stem cells, and resistance to chemotherapy. These observations have been significant for the development of molecularly targeted drugs designed to inhibit these signaling pathways. He also reported one of the first studies describing the synergistic effect of chemotherapy with anti-HER2 antibodies, a finding that contributed to the clinical development of trastuzumab for the treatment of patients with HER2-overexpressing breast cancer.
Dr. Arteaga earned his medical degree from the Universidad de Guayaquil in Ecuador. He trained at the Emory University School of Medicine and at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. He served for many years at the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, where he led a successful translational research program, including an NCI/NIH SPORE in breast cancer. He has received many awards from the American Cancer Society, AACR, the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation, and the American Society of Clinical Oncology. Dr. Arteaga served as the AACR president in 2014-2015.