Louis Stancato, PhD

Vice President of Enabling Technologies and Global Leader of Pediatric Rare Disease Platform

Joined the IBRI in September 2023

Louis Stancato

Louis Stancato, PhD, joins the Indiana Biosciences Research Institute (IBRI) with more than 25 years of experience as a drug hunter at Eli Lilly and Company, spanning the continuum of drug discovery. Stancato is an internationally recognized expert in pediatric oncology research and development, and is passionate about helping children with cancer.

At Eli Lilly and Company, Stancato was an Oncology Translational Research group leader for portfolio molecules in adult and pediatric cancer. Stancato's team supported clinical development for both small and large molecules that led to new clinical trial opportunities for pediatric patients, collaborating extensively with internal and external experts. Stancato's team’s translational research underpins numerous ongoing pediatric cancer clinical trials.

In 2016, Stancato co-led an EU-funded public-private partnership spanning 30 institutions across eight countries entitled “A Comprehensive Pediatric ‘Preclinical Proof-of-Concept Platform’ to Enable Clinical Molecule Development for Children with Cancer.” This first-of-its-kind consortium created an innovative, data-driven pediatric cancer research platform to accelerate drug development. In 2023, it became a nonprofit gGmbH named ITCC-P4.

Stancato also has extensive experience in early preclinical drug discovery including assay development and high throughput screen design, implementation and analysis; target identification and validation; lead generation and candidate selection; enabling technologies; high throughput gene knockdown; and phenotypic drug discovery.

Stancato and his wife live with their canine friends Bo and Maizie in Fishers, where they raised three kids. His passion for helping children extends into his personal life, where he's a mentor for the Youth Mentoring Initiative. For relaxation, Stancato loves going to Michigan Wolverines football games, delights in gardening and enjoys fishing the Florida Gulf Coast.

Areas of Expertise

  • Early phase clinical development
  • Pharmaceutical research and drug development
  • Preclinical translational oncology research
  • Public-private partnerships


  • Doctor of Philosophy (Pharmacology), The University of Michigan, 1995
  • Bachelor of Science (Cellular and Molecular Biology), The University of Michigan, 1990

Awards & Certifications

  • National Institutes of Health "Fellows Award for Research Excellence," 1995, 1997
  • National Cancer Institute, Intramural Research Training Appointee, 1995 to 1997

Honorary Societies

  • Industry Advisory Board, Harper Cancer Research Institute, University of Notre Dame
  • Strategy Oversight Committee, CureSearch for Children's Cancer
  • Editorial Board, Senior Editor, Molecular Cancer Therapeutics
  • Chair, Scientific Advisory Board, ITCC-P4 gGmbH