Valerie M. Weaver, PhD

Valerie M. Weaver, PhD

UCSF Medical Center

Research Interests

Molecular mechanisms whereby extracellular matrix receptors modulate cell fate; how mechanical and topological properties of the matrix, related to its composition and organization, regulate the function of matrix receptors to alter cell behavior; understanding how matrix composition and organization influences mammary tissue development and tumor progression; clarifying the role of matrix force on embryonic and adult stem cell fate.

Current Affiliations

Director, Center for Bioengineering and Tissue Regeneration; Professor, Departments of Surgery, Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, and Radiation Oncology; Core, Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program; Core, Joint UCSF/UC Berkeley Bioengineering Graduate Program; Member, UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center; Member, Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research; and Member, Developmental Biology and Stem Cell Graduate Program, University of California, San Francisco, California.

Previous Positions

Codirector, UCSF Brain Tumor Microenvironment Network (2011-2016); Professor, Anatomy (2010-2017); Codirector, Bay Area Center for Physical Sciences and Oncology (2009-2015); Associate Professor, Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences (2008-2010); Associate Professor (2006-2010), Anatomy and Surgery (2006-2010), University of California, San Francisco, California; Associate Professor (adjunct), Bioengineering (2006-2009); Member, University of Pennsylvania Abramson Cancer Center (2000-2006); Full Member, Institute for Medicine and Engineering, and Assistant Professor, Pathology (1999-2006), University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Postdoctoral Training

Postdoctoral Fellow, Cancer and Cell Biology, Life Sciences Group, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (1994-1999), University of California, Berkeley, California; Postdoctoral Fellow, Molecular Cell Biology, Institute for Biological Sciences, National Research Council of Canada (1992-1994), Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Selected AACR Service, Honors, and Awards

Member, AACR Distinguished Lectureship in Breast Cancer Research Committee (2018-2020); Invited Major Symposium Speaker, Annual Meeting (2018); Chair (2017-2018), Chair-Elect (2016-2017), and Member, Steering Committee (2013-2015), Tumor Microenvironment Working Group; Cochair (2017-2018) and Member (2013-2014), Annual Meeting Program Committee; Invited Speaker, Annual Meeting (2017); Chair, Annual Meeting Special Educational Session (2017); Invited Speaker, Special Conference, “Engineering and Physical Sciences in Oncology” (2016); Speaker, Special Conference, “Tumor Metastasis” (2015); Recipient, Pancreatic Cancer Action Network-AACR Innovative Grant, supported by the Blum-Kovler Foundation (2013); Member, Special Conferences Committee (2010-2013); Chair, Special Conference, Symposium on Metastasis and the Matrix (2010); Chair, AACR-NCI-EORTC International Conference on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics: “Discovery, Biology, and Clinical Applications” (2007); Chair, Annual Meeting Symposium on Organotypic 3D Models (2006).

Selected Non-AACR Service, Honors, and Awards

Invited Keynote Seminar Speaker, Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU BTS) Knight Cancer Institute. Betty Hise for Cancer Research Lectureship (2018); Recipient, The Colin Thomson Medal of Honor, Beatson Institute, Glasgow, Scotland (2018); Elected Inaugural Fellow, The American Society of Cell Biology (2017); Special Issues Editor, Mechanobiology at Molecular Cell Biology of the Cell (2017-2019); Invited Keynote Speaker, “The Hippo Pathway Across Species and Disciplines,” European Molecular Biology Organization, Rome, Italy (2017); Invited Keynote Speaker, “Treating Tumors in Context: The Importance of Biophysical and Biochemical ECM Heterogeneity in Treatment Response,” Women of Distinction in Science and Medicine Lecture, Barts Cancer Institute, Queen Mary, University of London (2016); Elected Fellow, American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (2014); Recipient, The James O. Davis Graduate Student Distinguished Lectureship, University of Missouri (2014); Recipient, Women in Cell Biology Mid-Career Award for Sustained Excellence in Research, American Society of Cell Biology (2014); Recipient, BCRP Breast Cancer Scholar Expansion Award, Department of Defense (2013).


PhD (1992) and HonBSc (1987), Biochemistry, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada; BSc, Chemistry/Biochemistry, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada (1985).