Ajay Maker

Assistant Professor

Room: 8139 COMRB,

Tel: 312-996-7470

Email: amaker@uic.edu


Link to Dr. Ajay Maker's
Surgical Oncology/Cancer Research Homepage

Dr. Maker is a surgical oncologist with board certification in general surgery. His expertise include treating benign and malignant diseases of the liver, bile ducts, gallbladder and pancreas, as well as colon and other gastrointestinal cancers, melanoma, and sarcoma. He joined the Division of Surgical Oncology and the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Illinois at Chicago after completing a fellowship in surgical oncology with a focus upon hepatopancreatobiliary surgery at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, and a fellowship in Tumor Immunology and Surgical Oncology at the National Cancer Institute. Dr. Maker cares for patients as part of a multidisciplinary team of medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, gastroenterologists, and radiologists who specialize in treating patients with these specific cancers.

Dr. Maker’s research focuses on cancers of the colon and liver. During his surgical residency at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, he spent two years performing translational immunotherapy research with Dr. Steven Rosenberg at the National Institutes of Health, where he and his colleagues were of the first to identify the utility of an anti-CTLA4 antibody as an anti-cancer treatment for patients with metastatic melanoma, and investigated its immunological mechanism of action.  His clinical research has involved identifying immunologic markers of cancer in pancreatic cystic tumors.

In his laboratory at UIC, he and his colleagues continue to focus on studying the role of the immune system in cancer, specifically on colon cancer that has spread to the liver. He is working towards identifying novel immunotherapeutic agents for these conditions and initiating clinical trials to investigate them.  His research has been supported by several grants, including the WCCAB Career Development Award.

Dr. Maker has served as a reviewer for the Annals of Surgical Oncology and the Journal of Surgical Oncology. He is also a member of the numerous societies, including the Society of Surgical Oncology, American Society of Clinical Oncology, American College of Surgeons, and the Association for Academic Surgery.


MD, Yale University School of Medicine
Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard School of Medicine
National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
Board Certifications
American Board of Surgery
Research Interest
Cancer Immunobiology/Immunotherapy for solid organ malignancies
Clinical Expertise
Benign and Malignant Disease of the Liver, Bile Ducts, and Gallbladder; Pancreatic Cancer and cysts (including the Whipple procedure); Colon Cancer; Melanoma/Sarcoma; Minimally Invasive Laparoscopic Surgery; General Surgical Oncology


  1. WCCAB Career Development Award
  2. Philippe Foundation Grant for the study of minimally invasive HPB surgery in Paris, France
  3. American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Foundation Merit Award
  4. Society of Surgical Oncology Award for the Most Cited Annals of Surgical Oncology Article
  5. Accomplished Teacher Citation
  6. American College of Surgeons Poster of Distinction
  7. Mannick Research Award, Brigham and Women’s Hospital Dept. of Surgery
  8. Society of Surgical Oncology Best Clinical Research Award
  9. Excellence in Teaching Award, Faulkner Hospital/Brigham and Women’s Hospital
  10. Association for Academic Surgery/Novartis Research Award
  11. ADA Medical Scholar Grant
  12. Alpha Omega Alpha honors medical fraternity

Publications/Book Chapters

  1. Shambaugh GE, Maker AV, Radosevich JA. Rapid Simultaneous Determination of Protein and Salt Concentrations in Ion-Exchange Fractions. Biotechniques. 19(5):725-8. 1995.
  2. Eisenberg ML, Maker AV, Slezak L, Nathan J, Sritharan K, Jena BP, Geibel JP, Andersen DK. Insulin Receptor (IR) and Glucose Transporter 2 (GLUT2) Proteins Form a Complex on the Rat Hepatocyte Membrane. Cellular Physiology and Biochemistry. 15(1-4):51-8, 2005.
  3. Ajay V. Maker and Dennis P. Orgill. Rapid Acute Amiodarone Induced Hepatotoxicity in a Burn Patient. Journal of Burn and Rehabilitation. 26(4):341-3. 2005.
  4. Ajay V. Maker and Dao Nguyen. Malignant Pleural Effusions as Viewed Through the Thoracoscope. Annals of Thoracic Surgery. 80(5):1941. 2005.
  5. Maker AV, Phan GQ, Attia P, Yang JC, Sherry RM, Topalian SL, Kammula US, Royal RE, Haworth LR, Levy C, Kleiner D, Mavroukakis SA, Yellin M, Rosenberg SA.  Tumor Regression and Autoimmunity in Patients Treated with CTLA-4 Blockade and IL-2: A Phase I/II Study. Annals of Surgical Oncology. 12(12):1005-16. 2005.
  6. Aisner D, Maker AV, Rosenberg SA, Berman D. Loss of S100 Antigenicity in Metastatic Melanoma. Human Pathology. 36(9):1016-9.2005.
  7. Attia P, Maker AV, Haworth LR, Freezer-Rogers L, Rosenberg, SA.  Inability of a Fusion Protein of IL-2 and Diphtheria Toxin (Denilukin Diftitox, ONTAK) to Eliminate Regulatory T Lymphocytes in Patients with Melanoma.  Journal of Immuntherapy. 28(6):582. 2005.
  8. Attia P, Phan GQ, Maker AV, Yang JC, Sherry RM, Topalian SL, Restifo NP, Haworth LR, Levy C, Freezer LJ, Morton KE, Mavroukakis SA, Yellin M, Rosenberg SA.  Autoimmunity Correlates with Tumor Regression in Patients with Metastatic Melanoma Treated with anti-CLTA-4.  Journal of Clinical Oncology. 23(25):6043-53. 2005.
  9. Maker AV, Attia P, Rosenberg SA. Analysis of the Cellular Mechanism of Anti-Tumor Responses and Autoimmunity in Patients Treated with CTLA-4 Blockade. Journal of Immunology. 175(11):7746-54. 2005. 
  10. Attia P, Powell DJ Jr, Maker AV, Kreitman RJ, Pastan I, Rosenberg SA. Selective elimination of human regulatory T lymphocytes in vitro with the recombinant immunotoxin LMB-2. Journal of Immunotherapy. 29(2):208-14. 2006.
  11. Maker AV, Yang JC, Sherry RM, Topalian SL, Kammula US, Royal RE, Restifo NP, Yellin M, Haworth LR, Levy C, Allen T, Mavroukakis SA, Attia P, Rosenberg SA. Intra-patient Dose Escalation of Anti-CTLA-4 Antibody in Patients with Metastatic Melanoma. Journal of Immunotherapy. 29(4):455-463.2006.
  12. Maker AV, Raut C, Lee L, Clancy T, Russell S, Swanson R. Cytology from Pancreatic Cysts is of Marginal Utility in Surgical Decision Making.  Annals of Surgical Oncology. 15(11):3187-92. 2008.
  13. Maker AV, Warth JA, Zinner MJ.  Novel Presentation of a Familial Pancreatic Cancer Syndrome. Journal of Gastrointestinal Surgery. 13(6):1151-4. 2009. 
  14. Rudloff U, Maker AV, Brennan M, Allen P, Randomized Controlled Trials in Pancreatic Cancer. In: Surgical Oncology Clinics of North America. 19(1):115-150.2010.
  15. Maker AV, Katabi N, Gonen M, DeMatteo RP, D’Angelica MI, Fong Y, Jarnagin WR, Brennan MF, Allen P. Cyst Fluid Mucin Levels Predict Dysplasia in Intraductal Papillary Mucinous Neoplasms of the Pancreas (IPMN). Ann Surg Onc. 18(1):199.2011.
  16. Maker AV, Katabi N, Schattner M, Klimstra, D, Jarnagin WR, Allen P. Cyst Fluid Cytokines Distinguish Low and High Risk Intraductal Papillary Mucinous Neoplasms (IPMN). Clinical Cancer Research. 17(6):1502. 2011.
  17. Li  L, Jayaram S, Ganesh L, Qian Q, Rotmensch J, Maker AV, Prabhakar BS. Knockdown of MADD and c-FLIP overcomes resistance to TRAIL-induced apoptosis in ovarian cancer cells. American J Obstetrics & Gynecology. Epub May 2011
  18. Maker AV, Gayet B. Totally laparoscopic left lateral sectorectomy for hepatic malignancies: A modified technique J of Gastrointest Sur. Epub June 2011
  19. Maker AV, Oxenberg J, Butte J, Kuk D, Gonen M, Fong Y, DeMatteo RP, D’Angelica MI, Allen P, Jarnagin WR. Is Port Site Resection Necessary in the Surgical Management of Gallbladder Carcinoma? Ann Surg Onc. Epub June 2011


  1. Ajay V. Maker, Studies on the Molecular Mechanics of Insulin Resistance in Pancreatogenic Diabetes. M.D. Thesis. Permanent Collection, Sterling Library of Medicine, New Haven, CT. 2001.
  2. Ajay V. Maker, The Clinical Years. In: Future M.D. Writers Club Press, 1st ed., 2002.
  3. Desai S, Barshes N, Maker AV, Surgery Clerkship: 150 Biggest Mistakes and How To Avoid Them. MD2b Press, Houston, TX. 2005. (editor)
  4. Maker AV and D’Angelica M, Hepatic Resection. In: Surgical management of hepatobiliary and pancreatic disorders, 2nd Edition. 2011.
  5. Maker AV, Covey A, Jarnagin W, Liver Anatomy: Variant Venous Anatomy - Implications for Resection. In: Venous Embolization of the Liver: Radiological and Surgical Practice. 2011