Research Summary

Dr. Ella Jones has over 12 years of research experience in the private sector, pioneering the development of targeted molecules for cancer imaging. At UCSF, Dr. Jones has demonstrated her ability to conduct cross-modality imaging research. She has been funded by the NIH/NCI as the PI to develop preclinical optical/nuclear imaging tools for molecular characterization of premalignant breast cancer (R01CA135626), and PET/SPECT imaging agents for prostate cancer (R21CA122126 and R01CA140617: Subcontract PI), which has been successfully translated to human imaging.

In the past ten years, Dr. Jones has devoted her career in translational breast cancer research. Her current work focuses on the evaluation of the primary breast tumor and surrounding architecture using PET and MRI for prediction of treatment response and survival outcome. Dr. Jones has been working with OncoVision since 2014 on integrating the dedicated breast PET (dbPET) into the breast care workflow. Through this academic-industrial partnership (R01CA227763), a new software interface has been successfully developed to improved DICOM compatibility for the dbPET’s use in the clinic and by the I-SPY 2 TRIAL.

Dr. Jones is the PI on multiple projects building the infrastructure of the dbPET at UCSF and working with a team of oncologists, breast and nuclear imaging radiologists and physicists to ensure the success of the dbPET program. She provides the oversight of image quality control, acquisition, processing, and analysis, as well as radiotracer needs for breast cancer imaging from bench to clinical translation. She spearheaded the effort of the IND application for [F-18]fluoroestradiol (FES) and received approval from the FDA in mid-2017.

As the Chair of the NCI Quantitative Imaging Network (QIN) Clinical Trial Design and Development workgroup (CTDD-WG), Dr. Jones has direct access to quantitative imaging tools developed under the QIN, including those for radiomics analysis, auto-segmentation, tracer uptake quantification. As a member of the NCI NCTN-QIN oversight committee, Dr. Jones is committed to evaluating new quantitative imaging methods and translating their use in clinical decision making to improve disease outcomes.

Dr. Jones published over 50 peer-reviewed papers in high impact scientific journals, over 45 abstracts, and 7 patents in diagnostic imaging.

Research Funding

  • February 1, 2019 - January 31, 2024 - Dedicated breast PET and MRI for characterization of breast cancer and its response to therapy, MPI. Sponsor: NIH, Sponsor Award ID: R01CA227763
  • September 30, 2018 - August 31, 2023 - Quantitative Imaging for Evaluation of Responses to Cancer Therapies (U01), Co-I. Sponsor: NIH/NCI, Sponsor Award ID: U01 CA225427
  • September 8, 2017 - August 31, 2022 - I-SPY2 +: Evolving the I-SPY 2 TRIAL to include MRI-directed, adaptive sequential treatment to optimize breast cancer outcomes, Co-I. Sponsor: NIH/NCI, Sponsor Award ID: P01CA210961
  • September 30, 2018 - August 31, 2021 - Quantitative Measures by Dedicated Breast PET and MRI for Early Prediction of Response to Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy, PI. Sponsor: DOD, Sponsor Award ID: W81XWH-18-1-0671


Post-doctoral training, 1993 - Chemistry, University of Oxford
PhD, 1991 - Chemistry, University of California, Davis
BS, 1987 - Chemistry, University of San Francisco

Honors & Awards

  • Member, NCI NCTN-QIN Oversight Committee, 2020
  • Peer Reviewer, National Institute of Health, CTIS, 2019-2020
  • External Reviewer, KWF Kancer Bestrijding, 2019
  • External Reviewer, Western University, Canada, 2019
  • Vice Chair and Chair, NIH/NCI Quantitative Imaging Network - Clinical Trial Design and Development Workgroup, 2016-2020
  • Peer Reviewer, New York State Department of Health, 2015
  • Peer Reviewer, Department of Defense, Breast Cancer, 2014-2020
  • Poster Award Recipient, World Molecular Imaging Congress Meeting, 2013
  • Section Chair and Moderator, World Molecular Imaging Congress Meeting, 2013
  • Peer Reviewer, National Institute of Health, NIBIB Quantum Projects, 2010
  • Peer Reviewer, National Institute of Health, NIBIB Training SEP, 2010
  • Peer Reviewer, Department of Defense, Breast Cancer, 2010
  • Peer Reviewer, Department of Defense, Breast Cancer, 2009
  • Peer Reviewer, National Institute of Health, Challenge grants, 2009
  • Chair of the Solution Science and Engineering Network, Solutia, Inc., 2001
  • Chair of the Monsanto Technical Community, Phosphorus Chapter, Monsanto Chemical Company, 1997-2001
  • 2 Outstanding Patent Awards, Mallinckrodt Medical, Inc., 1994
  • Assoicated Member of Balliol College, University of Oxford, 1991-1993
  • Outstanding Graduate Student Finalist, University of California, Davis, 1991
  • Non-resident Tuition Fellowship, University of California, Davis, 1987-1991
  • Student Award, American Chemical Society, 1987
  • Undergraduate Award in Analytical Chemistry, American Chemical Society, 1986

Selected Publications

  1. Liu G, Mitra D, Jones EF, Franc BL, Behr SC, Nguyen A, Bolouri MS, Wisner DJ, Joe BN, Esserman LJ, Hylton NM, Seo Y Mask-Guided Convolutional Neural Network for Breast Tumor Prognostic Outcome Prediction on 3D DCE-MR Images.  View on PubMed
  2. Hathi DK, Li W, Seo Y, Flavell RR, Kornak J, Franc BL, Joe BN, Esserman LJ, Hylton NM, Jones EF Evaluation of primary breast cancers using dedicated breast PET and whole-body PET.  View on PubMed
  3. Li W, Newitt DC, Gibbs J, Wilmes LJ, Jones EF, Arasu VA, Strand F, Onishi N, Nguyen AA, Kornak J, Joe BN, Price ER, Ojeda-Fournier H, Eghtedari M, Zamora KW, Woodard SA, Umphrey H, Bernreuter W, Nelson M, Church AL, Bolan P, Kuritza T, Ward K, Morley K, Wolverton D, Fountain K, Lopez-Paniagua D, Hardesty L, Brandt K, McDonald ES, Rosen M, Kontos D, Abe H, Sheth D, Crane EP, Dillis C, Sheth P, Hovanessian-Larsen L, Bang DH, Porter B, Oh KY, Jafarian N, Tudorica A, Niell BL, Drukteinis J, Newell MS, Cohen MA, Giurescu M, Berman E, Lehman C, Partridge SC, Fitzpatrick KA, Borders MH, Yang WT, Dogan B, Goudreau S, Chenevert T, Yau C, DeMichele A, Berry D, Esserman LJ, Hylton NM Predicting breast cancer response to neoadjuvant treatment using multi-feature MRI: results from the I-SPY 2 TRIAL.  View on PubMed
  4. Arasu VA; Kim Pl; Li W; Strand F; McHargue C; Harnish R; Newitt DC; Jones EF; Glymour MM; Kornak J; Esserman LJ; Hylton NM and the ISPY2 investigators Predictive Value of Breast MRI Background Parenchymal Enhancement for Neoadjuvant
    Treatment Response among HER2− Patients  View on PubMed
  5. Arasu VA, Kim P, Li W, Strand F, McHargue C, Harnish R, Newitt DC, Jones EF, Glymour MM, Kornak J, Esserman LJ, Hylton NM Predictive Value of Breast MRI Background Parenchymal Enhancement for Neoadjuvant Treatment Response among HER2- Patients.  View on PubMed
  6. Jones EF, Hathi DK, Freimanis R, Mukhtar RA, Chien AJ, Esserman LJ, Van't Veer LJ, Joe BN, Hylton NM Current Landscape of Breast Cancer Imaging and Potential Quantitative Imaging Markers of Response in ER-Positive Breast Cancers Treated with Neoadjuvant Therapy.  View on PubMed
  7. Jones EF, Buatti JM, Shu HK, Wahl RL, Kurland BF, Linden HM, Mankoff DA, Rubin DL, Tata D, Nordstrom RJ, Hadjiyski L, Holdhoff M, Schwartz LH. Clinical Trial Design and Development Work Group Within the Quantitative Imaging Network  View on PubMed
  8. Nguyen A, Vignesh A, Strand F, Wen L, Onishi N, Gibbs J, Jones EF, Joe BN, Esserman LE, Newitt DN, Hylton NM Comparison of segmentation methods in assessing background parenchymal enhancement as a biomarker for response to neoadjuvant therapy  View on PubMed
  9. Onishi N, Li W, Gibbs J, Wilmes LJ, Nguyen A, Jones EF, Arasu V, Kornak J, Joe BN, Esserman LJ, Newitt DC, Hylton NM. Impact of MRI Protocol Adherence on Prediction of Pathological Complete Response in the I-SPY 2 Neoadjuvant Breast Cancer Trial  View on PubMed
  10. McNitt-Gray M, Napel S, Jaggi A, Mattonen SA, Hadjiiski L, Muzi M, Goldgof D, Balagurunathan Y, Pierce LA, Kinahan PE, Jones EF, Nguyen A, Virkud A, Chan HP, Emaminejad N, Wahi-Anwar M, Daly M, Abdalah M, Yang H, Lu L, Lv W, Rahmim A, Gastounioti A, Pati S, Bakas S, Kontos D, Zhao B, Kalpathy-Cramer J, Farahani K. Standardization in Quantitative Imaging: A Multicenter Comparison of Radiomic Features from Different Software Packages on Digital Reference Objects and Patient Data Sets  View on PubMed
  11. Li W, Newitt DC, Yun B, Jones EF, Arasu V, Wilmes LJ, Gibbs J, Nguyen AA, Onishi N, Kornak J, Joe BN, Esserman LJ, Hylton NM. Tumor Sphericity Predicts Response in Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy for Invasive Breast Cancer  View on PubMed
  12. 68Ga FAPI PET/CT: Tracer Uptake in 28 Different Kinds of Cancer.  View on PubMed
  13. Li W, Newitt DC, Wilmes LJ, Jones EF, Arasu V, Gibbs J, La Yun B, Li E, Partridge SC, Kornak J, Esserman LJ, Hylton NM Additive value of diffusion-weighted MRI in the I-SPY 2 TRIAL.  View on PubMed
  14. Jones EF, Ray KM, Li W, Chien AJ, Mukhtar RA, Esserman LJ, Franc BL, Seo Y, Pampaloni MH, Joe BN, Hylton NM Initial experience of dedicated breast PET imaging of ER+ breast cancers using [F-18]fluoroestradiol.  View on PubMed
  15. Bartelink IH, Jones EF, Shahidi-Latham SK, Lee PRE, Zheng Y, Vicini P, van 't Veer L, Wolf D, Iagaru A, Kroetz DL, Prideaux B, Cilliers C, Thurber GM, Wimana Z, Gebhart G Tumor Drug Penetration Measurements Could Be the Neglected Piece of the Personalized Cancer Treatment Puzzle.  View on PubMed
  16. Huang SY, Franc BL, Harnish RJ, Liu G, Mitra D, Copeland TP, Arasu VA, Kornak J, Jones EF, Behr SC, Hylton NM, Price ER, Esserman L, Seo Y Exploration of PET and MRI radiomic features for decoding breast cancer phenotypes and prognosis.  View on PubMed
  17. Press RH, Shu HG, Shim H, Mountz JM, Kurland BF, Wahl RL, Jones EF, Hylton NM, Gerstner ER, Nordstrom RJ, Henderson L, Kurdziel KA, Vikram B, Jacobs MA, Holdhoff M, Taylor E, Jaffray DA, Schwartz LH, Mankoff DA, Kinahan PE, Linden HM, Lambin P, Dilling TJ, Rubin DL, Hadjiiski L, Buatti JM The Use of Quantitative Imaging in Radiation Oncology: A Quantitative Imaging Network (QIN) Perspective.  View on PubMed
  18. Olshen A, Wolf D, Jones EF, Newitt D, van ‘t Veer LJ, Yau C, Esserman L, Wulfkuhle JD, Gallagher RI, Singer L, Petricoin EF, Hylton N, Park CC Features of MRI stromal enhancement with neoadjuvant chemotherapy: a subgroup analysis of the ACRIN 6657/I-SPY TRIAL.  View on PubMed
  19. L. Singer, E. Jones, D. Newitt, J. Kornak, N. Hylton, C.C. Park Dynamic Contrast-Enhanced MRI in Monitoring Changes in Tumor-Associated Stroma During Treatment With Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy in Patients With Locally Advanced Breast Cancer.  View on PubMed
  20. Bartelink IH, Prideaux B, Krings G, Wilmes L, Lee PRE, Bo P, Hann B, Coppé JP, Heditsian D, Swigart-Brown L, Jones EF, Magnitsky S, Keizer RJ, de Vries N, Rosing H, Pawlowska N, Thomas S, Dhawan M, Aggarwal R, Munster PN, Esserman LJ, Ruan W, Wu AHB, Yee D, Dartois V, Savic RM, Wolf DM, van 't Veer L Heterogeneous drug penetrance of veliparib and carboplatin measured in triple negative breast tumors.  View on PubMed

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