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SHOP TALK: New Jobs, Appointments, & Changes; Promotions; Honors; Grants, & Other ‘People News’

doi: 10.1097/01.COT.0000383069.04713.b4
Shop Talk

Adam P. Dicker, MD, PhD, has been appointed Chairman of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University. Dr. Dicker currently co-leads the Radiation Research and Translational Biology Program at the university's Kimmel Cancer Center and serves as Director of the Christine Baxter Research Laboratory for Experimental Cancer Therapies at Jefferson Medical College. He has also been a principal investigator of a significant number of “first in human” developmental therapeutic trials involving novel signal transduction agents and radiation therapy.

The Lymphoma Research Foundation has elected Steven H. Bernstein, MD, and Pedro Jares, PhD, to the Executive Committee of its Mantle Cell Lymphoma Consortium. Dr. Bernstein is Professor and Co-director of the Lymphoma Program at the James P. Wilmot Cancer Center and a recipient of two grants from the foundation. Dr. Jares is a molecular biologist in the Pathology Department of the Hospital Clinic of Barcelona and the Scientific Coordinator of the Genomics Unit of the IDIBAPS (Institut de Investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer) at the University of Barcelona. His research focuses on the identification of new tumor-suppressor genes that may have a role in the development and progression of malignant lymphomas.

Catherine D. DeAngelis, MD, MPH, has been named the first recipient of the Health Research Policy Hero Award from the National Research Center for Women and Families. Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the American Medical Association, Dr. DeAngelis was recognized for her leadership role among medical journal editors and establishment of rigorous standards to protect the integrity of the research published in JAMA and the Archives journals. For example, in 2005, JAMA began requiring industry-sponsored clinical trials to have an independent statistical reviewer with access to all data as a condition of publication; JAMA is the only major general medical journal with that requirement, a news release notes.

James DeGregori, PhD has been appointed Co-leader of the Molecular Oncology Program at the University of Colorado Cancer Center. Dr. DeGregori, who has been a full member there since 1997, succeeds Jessica Tyler, PhD, who has joined the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Steven Grant, MD, Professor of Medicine at Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center and Associate Director for Translational Research, has received a $1.5 million SPORE—Specialized Program of Research Excellence—grant from the National Cancer Institute. The five-year award will build on recent work from Dr. Grant and his team investigating cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors' ability to disrupt multiple myeloma and leukemia cells in order to develop a new treatment approach.

Howard S. Hochster, MD, is now at Yale Cancer Center, as Professor of Medicine in Medical Oncology, Medical Director of Gastrointestinal Oncology, and Associate Director of Clinical Research at Yale Cancer Center. He was previously at NYU School of Medicine and Cancer Institute, where he was Professor of Medicine in the divisions of Medical Oncology and Clinical Pharmacology, as well as Director of the Gastrointestinal Cancer Program and Director of the NYUCI Clinical Trials Office.

The Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG) and the Hope Foundation have named Joanne Jeter, MS, MD, and Daniel Persky, MD, the 2010 Charles A. Coltman Jr., Fellowship awardees. Both physicians hold appointments as assistant professors of clinical medicine at the Arizona Cancer Center. Dr. Jeter has been involved in the SWOG Melanoma and Prevention Committees since her appointment at the cancer center and Dr. Persky has led research to increase survival rates for patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.

The Wistar Institute and University of the Sciences in Philadelphia have named Wistar Institute principal investigator Paul M. Lieberman, PhD, the McNeil Professor of Molecular Medicine and Translational Research. In this role, Dr. Lieberman will provide leadership of the Center for Chemical Biology and Translational Medicine.

Neal J. Meropol, MD, has been appointed Chief of the Division of Hematology and Oncology in the Department of Medicine at University Hospitals Case Medical Center and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. Dr. Meropol, who is also Associate Director for Clinical Research at the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, was previously at Fox Chase Cancer Center.

Joseph I. Miller, Jr., MD, has joined the Piedmont Heart Institute, Atlanta, GA, as the new Chief of Thoracic Surgery and Thoracic Oncologic Surgery. Dr. Miller has been a thoracic surgeon in the Atlanta area for more than 35 years and has served as an examiner on the Board of Cardiothoracic Surgery for the past 19 years. He has also published more than 165 peer-reviewed articles and over 50 book chapters.

Mikhail Nikiforov, PhD, has received a $750,000 grant from the American Cancer Society to develop new pharmaceutical agents to treat malignant melanoma. An Associate Professor in the Department of Cell Stress Biology at Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI), Dr. Nikiforov and his team have identified several promising inhibitors of the oncogene C-MYC that disrupt the growth of human melanoma tumors in laboratory models.

Also at RPCI, Tracey O'Connor, MD, has been named the 2010 inductee of the Richard Sarkin/ Medical Emeritus Faculty Society Chapter of the Gold Humanism Honor Society. The society is an initiative of the Arnold P. Gold Foundation, which was created to honor medical students and educators for “demonstrated excellence in clinical care, leadership, compassion, and dedication to service.” Dr. O'Connor is an Assistant Professor of Breast oncology and a staff physician in the Department of Medicine.

The Oncology Nursing Society elected the following new members to its 2010–2011 Board of Directors:

* Carlton Brown, PhD, RN, Assistant Professor in the School of Nursing at the University of Delaware, President.

* Julie Eggert, RN, PhD, Associate Professor and Doctoral Program Coordinator of Clemson University and the Cancer Risk Screening Program at Bon Secours-St. Francis Eastside in Greenville, SC, Secretary.

* Margaret Barton-Burke, PhD, RN, the Mary Ann Lee Endowed Professor of Oncology Nursing at the University of Missouri in St. Louis, Director-at-Large.

* Mary Pat Johnston, RN, MS, oncology clinical nurse specialist at ProHealth Care at the Regional Cancer Center in Waukesha, WI, Director-at-Large.

* Emma Dann, RN, MS, Senior Clinical Nurse Liaison with Amgen, Inc., also Director-at-Large.

Christopher Pelloski, MD, has joined the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center– Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute as the first Director of Pediatric Radiation Oncology and Director of the Radiation Oncology Residency Program and Medical Student Education. Dr. Pelloski, who received his medical degree from Northwestern University Medical School and completed his residency at M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, holds the joint appointment with Nationwide Children's Hospital for Pediatric Radiation Oncology.

Janet Davison Rowley, MD, has been named the second winner of the Margaret Kripke Legend Award from the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Dr. Rowley, the Blum-Riese Distinguished Service Professor of Medicine, Molecular Genetics and Cell Biology, and Human Genetics at the University of Chicago, is a pioneering researcher on the role of genetic variation in cancer and a mentor and role model for young scientists, noted Elizabeth Travis, PhD, Associate Vice President of Women Faculty Programs at MD Anderson.

“Janet Rowley has transformed the fields of cancer and cytogenetics, and, as a result, the field of molecular oncology. Her scientific work has proven immensely influential. She has had a major impact on patient treatment. For more than 40 years, she's been a dedicated mentor and an excellent role model for women in science and medicine, all while being fully committed to her family, as evidenced by working part-time for 20 years in order to raise her children. I can think of no one who better exemplifies the essence of this award.”

The Society of Gynecologic Oncologists and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists have named Marcia M. Humphrey Schmidt, MD, the recipient of their jointly developed Breast Cancer Fellowship for gynecologic oncologists. Dr. Humphrey Schmidt, who completed her fellowship in gynecologic oncology at the University of South Florida this month, will become the first to participate in the one-year fellowship training program dedicated to the care and treatment of breast cancer and related disease.

Martin S. Tallman, MD, has been appointed Chief of the Leukemia Service in the Department of Medicine at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and Professor of Medicine at the Weill Cornell Medical College. Before joining MSKCC, Dr. Tallman was a tenured professor of medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and Associate Chief of the Division of Hematology/Oncology.

The Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute has received a $2.5 million donation to construct the Joseph Dresner Family Bone Marrow Transplant and Hematologic Malignancies Center on its main campus in Detroit. Named after its donor, the center will focus on improving care for patients with leukemia, multiple myeloma, lymphoma and myelodysplastic syndrome, and enhancing communication among caregivers.

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BioAccelerate NYC Prize Aims to Spur Life Sciences Industry in New York

Three of the six winners of the BioAccelerate NYC Prize, given by the Partnership for New York City and the New York City Economic Development Corporation, are involved in cancer-related research. Each will receive $250,000 to conduct late-stage, proof-of-concept research on products deemed to improve human health.

A news release notes that the goal of the funding is to move research toward commercialization by making it more attractive to venture capital funding, catalyzing the creation of a life sciences industry sector in the city by increasing the number of commercial spin-offs from New York's universities and research institutions.

Each winner is paired with a life science industry entrepreneur to act as a mentor and provide guidance on commercialization and company formation for the duration of the funding. The competition addresses what is seen as a funding gap between projects too commercial to be eligible for academic or NIH grants but also too speculative for private sector investment.

The three winners involving cancer-related research are the following:

Anne Bresnick, PhD, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Yeshiva University—research involving the S100 family of calcium-binding proteins, which are involved in tumor metastasis.

Brent Stockwell, PhD, Columbia University—research involving a new class of drugs to treat cancer in a more selective and non-toxic way by targeting proteins.

Howard Worman, MD, also of Columbia—research involving treatment for patients with cardiomyopathy that would use drugs currently used to treat cancer.

“New York City's bioscience researchers are among the best in the world…. What's been lacking here in New York is a commercial infrastructure to translate research into jobs,” said Partnership for New York City President and CEO Kathryn Wylde. “The BioAccelerate NYC Prize is a key step towards establishing a bioscience cluster that will ultimately employ thousands of New Yorkers.”

Added Maria Gotsch, President & CEO of the New York City Investment Fund, “No longer will New York City scientists who want to start bioscience companies have to go to Boston or Silicon Valley for funding or entrepreneurial advice. By connecting top-flight academic institutions, private sector funding, and entrepreneurial talent, we are on our way to making New York City a world leader in bioscience.”

© 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.
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