Dr. Duru received a B.Sc. degree in Biological Sciences and Bioengineering from Sabanci University in 2004 and then in between 2004 to 2007, he worked as a research assistant in the Molecular Biology and Genetics Department at Bogazici University, Istanbul. He received his Ph.D. from Karolinska Institutet (KI), Stockholm in September 2012 where he studied MHC-class I restricted-peptide based immunomodulation of T cells and NK cells.
In January 2013, he started his postdoctoral studies in the Cell and Gene Therapy Group located at the Center for Hematology and Regenerative Medicine at KI and focused on developing novel cell culture agents and methods for ex vivo NK cell expansion. In parallel, Dr. Duru investigated the impact of novel immunomodulatory drugs and biological agents on prognosis and treatment of multiple myeloma patients. In September 2014, Dr. Duru moved to the Vaccine and Gene Therapy Institute of Florida to establish KI labs at the Center for the Diseases of Aging. At VGTI Florida, Dr. Duru served as senior scientist and head of the Cell Therapies Core facility. He has recently been appointed as an Assistant Professor at the Cell Therapy Institute, Nova Southeastern University (NSU), Florida. He is currently setting up his new research group focusing on optimizing hematopoietic stem cell-derived NK cell differentiation and expansion platforms in an attempt to develop novel NK cell-based immunotherapy products for cancer treatment. In addition, his research includes modeling the interactions of NK cells with the tumor stroma and its impact on NK cell development and function.
Furthermore, Dr. Duru is the scientific director of the Cell Therapy Core Facility (CTC) at NSU, which is capable of design, manufacturing, pre-clinical evaluation and optimization of cell therapy products as well as stem cell differentiation (including embryonic, hematopoietic and mesenchymal stem cells) in addition to long term culture and expansion of various cell lineages and cell lines.