José Baselga, MD, PhD, has been named Physician-in-Chief of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, moving from Massachusetts General Hospital, which he joined in 2010 as Chief of the Division of Hematology/Oncology and Associate Director of the MGH Cancer Center. He will assume the new role at MSKCC on January 1, replacing Robert Wittes, MD, who announced last year that he would be stepping down after 10 years.
“Dr. Baselga is a dedicated clinician and a distinguished researcher. I know he will collaborate energetically and enthusiastically with his colleagues throughout this great institution to accelerate cancer discovery and help bring new and more effective treatments to the clinic, while ensuring the highest and most humane standards in patient care,” MSKCC President and CEO Craig B. Thompson, MD, said in a statement.
The Association of American Cancer Institutes will award Margaret R. Spitz, MD, MPH, the AACI Distinguished Scientist Award, and Alan S. Rabson, MD, the AACI Special Recognition Award, later this month at the 2012 AACI/Cancer Center Administrators Forum Annual Meeting.
Spitz was Professor and Founding Chair of the Department of Epidemiology during her 27-year career at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. She most recently joined the Dan L. Duncan Cancer Center at Baylor College of Medicine in 2009 to help direct its population sciences program. Her award recognizes her scientific accomplishments and her contributions to the cancer center and cancer research communities. She has performed innovative molecular and genetic epidemiology research, including a focus on inter-individual variation in susceptibility to tobacco carcinogenesis.
Rabson joined the National Institutes of Health in 1955 and became a staff member in the NCI's Laboratory of Pathology the following year. He was named Director of the NCI's Division of Cancer Biology, Diagnosis, and Centers in 1975, where he served until he was appointed Deputy Director of the Institute in 1995. His award marks his five decades as a pathologist, cancer researcher, administrator, and clinical advisor, as well as his numerous discoveries in virology and authorship of more than 100 scientific journal articles.
Richard L. Schilsky, MD, Professor of Medicine and Section Chief of Hematology/Oncology at the University of Chicago Department of Medi-cine, has been named the recipient of the 2012 Bob Pinedo Cancer Care Prize by the Society for Translational Oncology to recognize his clinical and research leadership in the areas of gastrointestinal cancers and cancer pharmacology, as well as his compassionate care of patients. The $50,000 prize will be presented at the Third Annual STO meeting later this month, where he will deliver the keynote lecture, “Publicly Funded Clinical Trials and the Future of Cancer Care.”
“As a clinician scientist, he combines the ideal of compassionate patient care with a relentless search for clinical improvement,” STO's Co-Chairman, Patrick G. Johnston, MD, PhD, said in a news release. “He has also played a uniquely important role in the design and conduct of high-quality research trials that help in translating new scientific evidence into effective and efficient care for patients with cancer.”
Gary Dunnington, MD, has been named Chair of the Indiana University School of Medicine Department of Surgery. He was the founding medical director of two multidisciplinary breast centers, first at the USC Norris Cancer Center and then at Southern Illinois University, where he was most recently.
Andrew L. Kung, MD, PhD, has joined New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center as Director of the Division of Pediatric Hematology Oncology and Stem Cell Transplantation. He was most recently at Harvard Stem Cell Institute.
“Dr. Kung's ambitious plan to launch a comprehensive program designed to tailor treatments to individual patients and speed the development of new pediatric therapies will further establish New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center as a preeminent leader in cancer research,” Stephen G. Emerson, MD, PhD, Director of the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center at the medical center, said in a news release.
Voichita Bar-Ad, MD, Associate Professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, has been named Residency Program Director.
She was named an “Educator of the Year” by the Association of Residents in Radiation Oncology last year, and was selected to receive the 2012 Department of Radiation Oncology's “Teacher of the Year Award,” by her residents. Her research focuses on treatment-related side effects and toxicities, patient quality of life, and symptom management.
Barbara Curbow, PhD, Professor and Chair of the Department of Behavioral Science and Community Health in the University of Florida College of Public Health and Health Professions, has been selected as Director of the UF Shands Cancer Center's new Population Science Program, which will work to reduce general population cancer burden through research covering cancer risk factors, prevention and early detection strategies, and patient perceptions and behaviors about treatment.
“Of particular interest is to identify and address the needs of low-income residents of rural north Florida and other vulnerable populations in our own neighborhood,” she said in a statement.
Before joining UF in 2006, Curbow served on the faculty at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, where she remains adjunct professor.
William S. Dynan, PhD, has joined Emory University School of Medicine and Winship Cancer Institute as Professor of Radiation Oncology and Biochemistry. His research focuses on DNA repair in tumor cells that could lead to increasing the effectiveness of radiation therapy. He most recently served as Associate Director for Research in the Institute of Molecular Medicine and Genetics at Georgia Health Sciences University, and was also a Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar.
The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas Foundation has named Joseph S. Bailes, MD, Chairman of the Board of Directors; and Barbara Canales, Vice Chairman. Bailes, a member of OT's Editorial Board, a Past President and Interim EVP/CEO of ASCO, and a partner in Texas Oncology, P.A., is a founding member of the CPRIT Foundation Board and Vice Chairman of the CPRIT Governing Board, as well as a founding member of Physician Reliance Network, a predecessor of US Oncology, Inc.
The Association of American Cancer Institutes has awarded the following four Translational Cancer Research Fellowships:
- Scott V. Bratman, MD, PhD, a resident and postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Stanford Cancer Institute, for “A genomic strategy for residual disease monitoring in non-small cell lung cancer,”
- Shaun Rosebeck, PhD, a research fellow in pediatric hematology/oncology at the University of Michigan Health System, for “Deregulated RIP1 protein modifications in B-lymphomagenesis,”
- Hubing Shi, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in the division of dermatology at David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, for “A PDGFRβ-EGFR hetero-complex in B-RAF mutant melanomas with acquired resistance to B-RAF inhibition,” and
- David VanderWeele, MD, a fellow in the section of hematology/oncology at the University of Chicago, for “Prostate cancer oncogenesis: one disease or two?”
Stephen Byers, PhD, Professor and Associate Director for Shared Resources at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center and Director of the Translational Technologies and Resources component of the Georgetown/Howard Universities Clinical and Translational Sciences Center, has been awarded an NCI Provocative Questions Project grant.
The four-year, $2.5-million grant, which includes collaboration with other researchers at Georgetown, as well as from Harvard and Columbia Universities, will address the question (#5 on the NCI's list of 24), “Given the evidence that some drugs commonly and chronically used for other indications, such as an anti-inflammatory drug, can protect against cancer incidence and mortality, can we determine the mechanism by which any of these drugs work?”
The National Cancer Institute has renewed its funding of the Yale Specialized Programs of Research Excellence in Skin Cancer grant over the next five years, for a total of $11.5 million. The grant supports multidisciplinary research in biomarkers and therapy targets based on Next-Gen DNA sequencing, genomics, and proteomic analyses. Ruth Halaban, PhD, Senior Research Scientist in the Department of Dermatology at Yale Cancer Center, is the project's principal investigator.
The Institute of Medicine and the Food and Drug Administration's Center for Tobacco Products have named the first FDA Tobacco Regulatory Science Fellows. The fellows will spend a year in Rockville, Md., where they will actively participate in the development of science-based public health strategies and lead specific projects related to tobacco product regulation. Each fellow will be assigned to one of three offices within CTP for the full year: the Office of Health Communication and Education, Office of Policy, and Office of Science. The 2012–2013 fellows are:
- Atanaska Dineva, communications associate, Institute for Global Tobacco Control, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
- Candice Jongsma, PhD, research scientist, Conoco-Phillips, Bartlesville, Okla.
- Elizabeth Laposata, JD, research analyst, Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education, University of California, San Francisco.
The Ohio State University Com-prehensive Cancer Center—Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute has announced the development of an international pancreatic cancer research effort to develop a collaboration with scientific investigators in Taiwan and Germany.
“We will bring multinational talent and will have access to a robust tumor bank for pancreatic cancer, which will help to speed drug discovery and cure for this dreadful disease,” Tanios Bekaii-Saab, MD, Section Chief of the Section of Gastrointestinal Oncology, said in a statement.
Bekaii-Saab will partner with Pin-Win Lin, MD, Professor in the Graduate Institute of Clinical Medicine and School of Medicine in the Department of Surgery and Superintendent of National Cheng Kung University Hospital in Taiwan; Yan-Shen Shan, PhD, and Po-Hsien Huang, PhD, both Assistant Professors at Cheng Kung; Ching-Shih Chen, PhD, Professor of Internal Medicine at Cheng Kung; Mark Bloomston, MD, Director of OSU's Surgical Oncology Fellowship Program; and Christoph Plass, PhD, Head of the Division of Epigenomics and Cancer Risk Factors at the German Cancer Research Center.
The Wistar Institute will receive a $1 million grant from Pennsylvania's Commonwealth Universal Research Enhancement Pro-gram to support research to develop a blood test for lung cancer. Louise C. Showe, PhD, Professor in the Molecular & Cellular Oncology Program and Director of the Genomics and Bioinformatics facilities, who will lead the research, said in a statement, “Our recent published studies show that with a simple blood draw, we can detect lung cancer, show the effectiveness of cancer surgery, by sampling the same patient's blood for analysis after surgery, and even determine if the cancer may return. We are working to further validate and expand our findings by studying more patient samples so that we have enough evidence to take this concept into clinical trials.”
The Oncology Nursing Certification Corporation will be offering a new certification program in blood and marrow transplantation nursing, covering autologous and allogeneic transplantation in adult and pediatric patients. The Blood and Marrow Transplantation Certified Nurse Examination will be offered for the first time in February 2014.
“As the field of blood and marrow transplantation has evolved, nurses in the specialty have developed a unique body of knowledge. BMTCN certification will validate that knowledge,” the Executive Director, Cyndi Miller Murphy, MSN, RN, CAE, said in a statement.
The American Association for Cancer Research is accepting nominations for its annual series of awards and lectureships. Recipients will be honored at the 2013 AACR Annual Meeting, to be held April 6–10 in Washington, DC. More information is available at www.AACR.org/ScientificAwards
Correction: In the August 25th issue, the organizations that awarded the 2012 Susan Matsuko Shinagawa LIVESTRONG Cancer Control Leadership Award to COL (Ret.) James E. Williams, Jr., U.S. Army, MS, SPHR, and Olga G. Sánchez, Community Health Program Representative at San Diego State University/University of California San Diego Cancer Center Comprehensive Partnership, were incorrectly listed. The awards were presented by the Intercultural Cancer Council and the Lance Armstrong Foundation at the ICC's 25th Anniversary Biennial Symposium on Minorities, the Medically Underserved & Health Equity.
Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Awards $12 Million in Research Grants to Address Four ‘Critical Areas of Unmet Medical Need’
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society has awarded 20 grants, totaling $12 million, under its Translational Research Program, an initiative designed to accelerate the movement of promising discoveries from the lab to the clinic. Each grant awards $600,000 over three years.
The grants were awarded to the following individuals to address these four areas of high, unmet medical need in blood cancers:
The leukemic stem cell in AML and MDS and the identification of potential targeted therapies:
- Alan D'Andrea, MD, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
- James Griffin, MD, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
- H. Leighton Grimes, PhD, Children's Hospital Medical Center of Cincinnati
- Guzman, PhD, Joan & Sanford I. Weill Medical College of Cornell University
- Duane Hassane, PhD, Joan & Sanford I. Weill Medical College of Cornell University
- Anthony Letai, MD, PhD, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
- Ross Levine, MD, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
- A. Thomas Look, MD, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
- Li Zhang, MSc, MD, PhD, University Health Network
Novel therapeutic strategies for non-cutaneous T-cell lympho-proliferative disorders:
- Jaroslaw Maciejewski, MD, PhD, Cleveland Clinic Foundation
- Owen O'Connor, MD, PhD, Columbia University
Development of therapeutic strategies for high-risk myeloma:
- Jennifer Carew, PhD, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
- Irene Ghobrial, MD, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
- Christoph Heuck, MD, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
- Alexander Stewart, MD, Mayo Clinic
Mechanisms underlying long-term and late effects related to cancer treatment and the development of measures to reduce or prevent these toxicities:
- Smita Bhatia, MD, MPH, City of Hope
- Eric Chow, MPH, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
- Ruben Niesvizky, MD, Joan & Sanford I. Weill Medical College of Cornell University
- Pavan Reddy, MD, University of Michigan
- Daniela Salvemini, PhD, Saint Louis University.
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