Indiana University School of Medicine has announced the hiring of Kelvin Lee, MD, to lead the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center, bolstered by a $15 million fund established by the Walther Cancer Foundation to support him in this role.
Jan Kitajewski, PhD, has been appointed director of the University of Illinois (UI) Cancer Center effective November 13, 2020. He has served as interim director since December 2019 and joined UI Cancer Center in 2016 from Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Hannah Hazard-Jenkins, MD, associate chair of surgery for cancer services and a native West Virginian, has been named the permanent director of the WVU Cancer Institute after having served in the position on an interim basis since January.
The coronavirus pandemic has challenged the cancer research community in countless ways, and the 2020 AACI/CCAF Annual Meeting was no exception. Held virtually for the first time during two days in October, the event drew nearly 900 cancer center colleagues for presentations on topics ranging from cancer screening guidelines and managing change in clinical trials to pediatric oncology and end-of-life care.
AACI's Clinical Research Innovation (CRI) has published a digital book of abstracts and posters from the 12th Annual AACI CRI Meeting. The book features 77 abstracts from 31 cancer centers submitted for virtual presentation at the CRI meeting this past July. The CRI Clinical Trials Office (CTO) Medical Director Working Group will host a virtual roundtable on Tuesday, November 10. The discussion will focus on the results of a recent survey distributed to CTO medical directors.
At the 2020 AACI/CCAF Annual Meeting, AACI President Karen E. Knudsen, MBA, PhD, announced plans for her presidential initiative, which will leverage the expertise of North America's 102 leading cancer institutes to address cancer health disparities. Through a two-phase process, the initiative will convert understanding of cancer disparities across AACI cancer centers into meaningful, measurable actions to improve the lives of people with cancer.
AACI recently launched a federal legislation tracking tool for its Public Policy Resource Library (PPRL). The legislation tracker will provide updates on the status of cancer-related bills and will track efforts by AACI and likeminded organizations to advance the legislation. The tracker will specifically highlight federal legislation that has been endorsed by AACI’s Board of Directors.
B. Mark Evers, MD, FACS, director of UK Markey Cancer Center, has been elected to the National Academy of Medicine. Dr. Evers was elected for his expertise on intestinal hormones and hormonal arcades in oncogenesis.
The national breast cancer organization Susan G. Komen® has announced that Donald McDonnell, PhD, is one of two breast cancer researchers named to receive the nonprofit's Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction — Komen's highest scientific honor.
Cardiothoracic surgeon Timothy W. Mullett, MD, MBA, FACS, has started a two-year term as chair of the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. He serves as medical director of the UK Markey Cancer Center Affiliate Network and specializes in the treatment of lung cancer.
Antoni Ribas, MD, PhD, has been named to the National Academy of Medicine. He was recognized for defining the mechanistic basis of how patients respond to or develop resistance to checkpoint inhibitors and for leading multicenter clinical trials for patients with advanced melanoma.
Colleen Tetzlaff, MHS, PA-C, an advanced practice clinician at Fox Chase Cancer Center, was recently named president of the Association of Physician Assistants in Oncology for 2020-2021.
The Advanced Practitioner Society for Hematology and Oncology (APSHO) presented the third annual Mary Pazdur Award for Excellence in Advanced Practice in Oncology to Christina Cone, DNP, APRN, ANP-BC, AOCNP®, of Duke Cancer Institute, at JADPRO Live Virtual 2020, an educational conference for oncology advanced practitioners.
Press Ganey has recognized Fox Chase Cancer Center with its 2020 Guardian of Excellence Award for providing outstanding clinical performance for patients in its outpatient clinics. The award honors organizations who continually perform in the top five percent for patient experience, engagement, or clinical quality performance throughout each quarter of the award year.
A team of researchers from the Rogel Cancer Center received an $11.2 million grant from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute to study how to use the microbiome to limit complications of stem cell transplants for blood cancers and other diseases. Principal investigator is Pavan Reddy, MD.
The Walther Cancer Foundation will invest $11 million to advance collaborative cancer research at Indiana University and Purdue University by supporting scientists through bioinformatics. Income from the new fund will continuously support bioinformatics personnel, technology, and other tools shared by the cancer research programs at both universities. IU and Purdue will also make their own investments into the fund.
The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine and OSUCC – James have been awarded a five-year, $9.1 million renewal from the National Cancer Institute. The grant will allow principal investigator Patrick Green, PhD, and colleagues to continue studying retrovirus models of cancer.
Ginny L. Clements has given $8.5 million to the UArizona Cancer Center to strengthen the center's breast cancer patient care and research programs. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1956 at the age of 15.
Cedars-Sinai has been awarded a five-year, $8.3 million grant by the National Cancer Institute to study the diversity and determinants of the immune-inflammatory response to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Using comprehensive longitudinal data collection and analyses, the research will focus on the ethnically and racially diverse population served by the Cedars-Sinai Health System in Los Angeles.
Researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai will receive more than $7.3 million from the National Cancer Institute as part of its new Serological Sciences Network, one of the largest coordinated national efforts to study immunology and SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
With a new $7.2 million grant from the National Cancer Institute, Rogel Cancer Center researchers and their national collaborators will test whether blocking inflammatory processes could protect cells and potentially prevent some cancers.
OSUCCC – James and the Ohio State College of Pharmacy have been awarded a five-year, $7 million grant renewal from the National Cancer Institute. This grant will allow research to continue on potential anticancer drug leads based on compounds from tropical plants, coastal lichens, cultured cyanobacteria, and filamentous fungi.
Researchers with the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center have secured $4 million in funding from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to establish an HIV-associated Malignancy Research Center focused on lung cancer in East Africa.
Subhamoy Dasgupta, PhD, has received a five-year, $2.52 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to support investigations into how communication channels between a cancer cell’s nucleus and the mitochondria are driving cancer metastasis. The award is part of the NIH’s High-Risk, High-Reward Research Program.
Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey has received a $1.6 million, five-year grant from the National Cancer Institute to support the Rutgers Youth Enjoy Science (RUYES) Program. RUYES seeks to increase the diversity of the biomedical, cancer research workforce in order to reduce cancer disparities in both New Jersey and across the United States.
The National Institutes of Health has awarded a Research Project Cooperative Agreement grant to Yale Cancer Center. The two-year, $1.4 million U01 award will fund immuno-serological assays for monitoring COVID-19 in patients with hematologic malignancies.
Dean W. Felsher, MD, PhD, is a 2020 recipient of the National Cancer Institute's (NCI) Outstanding Investigator Award. His lab will target the MYC oncogene pathway to treat human cancer using recent fundamental insights into how MYC initiates and maintains tumorigenesis.
David Gius, MD, PhD, a breast cancer and radiation researcher, has joined the Mays Cancer Center. He was recruited from the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University with a $6 million senior investigator recruitment grant from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas.
Michaela A. Dinan, PhD, has been appointed co-leader of the Cancer Prevention and Control Research Program at Yale Cancer Center beginning January 1, 2021. She joins Yale from Duke Cancer Institute/Duke Clinical Research Institute.
Deirdre J. Cohen, MD, MS, has joined Mount Sinai Health System as director of the Gastrointestinal Oncology Program and medical director of the Cancer Clinical Trials Office at The Tisch Cancer Institute.
Ruben Mesa, MD, FACP, has been named executive director of the Mays Cancer Center. The appointment broadens Dr. Mesa's scope of responsibility in coordinating and integrating all aspects of cancer prevention, screening, care, and survivorship with practice, education, and research across UT Health San Antonio.
After serving as interim director since January 1, Ben Ho Park, MD, PhD, has been named director of the division of hematology and oncology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He is associate director for translational research, co-leader of the breast cancer research program, and director of precision oncology at Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center.
Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine Interim Dean Stanton L. Gerson, MD, has agreed to extend his term for another year, to June 30, 2022. Dr. Gerson is a Distinguished University Professor, longtime director of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, and a past president of AACI.
Brad Cairns, PhD, has accepted an appointment as chief academic officer at Huntsman Cancer Institute. In addition, Alana Welm, PhD, has accepted an appointment as senior director of basic science, a role previously held by Dr. Cairns.
Karen Winkfield, MD, PhD, associate director for Community Outreach and Engagement and director of the Office of Cancer Health Equity at Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center, has been named the new executive director of the Meharry-Vanderbilt Alliance.
Nearly 1 in 8 commercially insured patients nationwide who underwent an elective colonoscopy between 2012 and 2017 performed by an in-network provider received "surprise" bills for out-of-network expenses, often totaling hundreds of dollars or more, new analysis from a team led by James M. Scheiman, MD, shows.
A broad collaboration of scientists co-led by Robert Schreiber, PhD, has identified five features of neoantigens that optimize the ability to trigger T cells to attack cancer and leave healthy tissue untouched. The discovery could improve immunotherapies against the disease.
Risk for melanoma can be estimated long before detection of any suspicious moles, according to A. Hunter Shain, PhD, who led a new study to detect DNA mutations in individual skin cells. The genomic methods used to probe skin damage in the study could be developed to be used to estimate baseline melanoma risk for individuals in the general population.
A new study from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center has discovered that mutations found in cancers do not accumulate randomly, but are found in distinct patterns that vary based on the three-dimensional organization of the genome in the cell as well as the underlying factors causing the mutations.
In his previous role at Moffitt Cancer Center, Said Sebti, PhD, and colleagues discovered FGTI-2734, a drug that overcomes a major hurdle in halting the growth of malignant tumors driven by the KRAS protein, including pancreatic cancer. In collaboration with VCU Massey Cancer Center researchers, Dr. Sebti intends to further develop FGTI-2734 to eventually gain FDA approval for testing the drug in clinical trials.
A study from Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University has the potential to change how patients whose prostate cancer recurs after prostatectomy are treated. The Emory Molecular Prostate Imaging for Radiotherapy Enhancement, or EMPIRE-1, trial is the first randomized trial of men with prostate cancer with recurring cancer to show that treatment based on advanced molecular imaging can improve disease-free survival rates.
University of Florida Health researchers Sumita Bhaduri-McIntosh, MD, PhD, and Michael McIntosh, PhD, and their collaborators have published new research showing a class of drugs used to treat a limited set of breast and ovarian cancers are also effective against cancers linked to the Epstein-Barr virus when tested on human cells.
Patients receiving care for advanced cancer at Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego Health were more likely to survive or experience a longer period without their disease progressing if they received personalized cancer therapy, report University of California San Diego School of Medicine researchers led by Razelle Kurzrock, MD.
A promising new biomarker that appears in patients before stomach cancer develops may help with early detection of the disease and improve patient response to therapy, according to findings in a study led by Juanita L. Merchant, MD, PhD, and colleagues at the University of Arizona Health Sciences.
Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have genetically modified human Natural Killer T (NKT) cells with a chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) that enables them to specifically recognize and attack neuroblastoma. Expressed with the CAR is interleukin-15 (IL-15), a natural protein that supports NKT cell survival.
In a large randomized clinical trial, researchers evaluated the immunotherapy drug avelumab for patients with advanced urothelial cancer. And the findings of the trial, called the JAVELIN Bladder 100 study, are "practice-changing," according to Petros Grivas, MD, PhD, of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, who is the co-leader of this global, industry-sponsored trial.
For patients with non-small cell lung cancer, two major treatment strategies have emerged: tyrosine kinase inhibitors and immune checkpoint inhibitors. However, choosing the right therapy isn’t always an easy decision, as biomarkers can change during therapy rendering that treatment ineffective. Moffitt Cancer Center researchers are developing a noninvasive, accurate method to analyze a patient’s tumor mutations and biomarkers to determine the best course of treatment.
Researchers at the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center have found that a drug that activates the body’s natural defenses by behaving like a virus may also make certain stealthy melanoma tumors visible to the immune system, allowing them to be better targeted by immunotherapy.
A new study by UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals and the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia has quantified the impact of repealing the 2010 Affordable Care Act (ACA), which enables 18- to 25-year-olds to remain on their parents insurance plans, including cancer patients who require long-term medical follow-up. The study builds on previous UCSF research showing that children covered by private health insurance have better outcomes than those who are not.
Peng Mao, PhD, and his team have discovered an intricate series of events that cells use to repair DNA, finding that in transcription-coupled DNA repair, RNA polymerases change shape when one type of protein binds and dislodges other proteins. The shape change switches RNA polymerase from transcribing DNA to repairing.
Opioids for pain relief are often a necessity for cancer patients, but opioid use comes with its own set of risks. Two papers published by researchers at The University of Kansas Cancer Center bring those risks to light. Using the National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results-Medicare database, Andrew Roberts, PharmD, PhD, and his team conducted two retrospective studies.
Breast cancer is one of the most common cancers among women and the most costly to treat. Now, Jefferson researchers have shown that although the use of an effective and less expensive treatment is on the rise, some patients, specifically Black women and those without private insurance, are offered the beneficial therapy less often.
Ambitious efforts at the UVA Cancer Center to improve care delivered to patients with cancer that has spread to the brain have yielded important insights and tools that can benefit other hospitals, a new publication reports. The tools include the first set of metrics to assess care provided for these secondary tumors, known as brain metastasis.
The inflammasome—a protein signaling network that is activated to rid the body of virus or bacteria-infected cells—may play an important role in triggering an immune response to cancer and causing an existing class of drugs to work better against cancers. A collaborative research study led by experts at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center, supported by Stand Up To Cancer and the Adelson Medical Research Foundation, found that the inflammasome imparts a DNA repair defect-like state in cancer cells.
Colon cancer may be treated or even prevented by altering microorganisms in the intestine and by combating inflammation with a clinical treatment previously used to treat inflammatory bowel diseases, findings from a study led by the University of Florida suggest.
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers are taking a closer look at the genomic features of prostate cancer tumors among men of different races in hopes of better understanding why African Americans are more susceptible to the disease. In a new study, the research team describes the immune-oncologic differences in prostate cancer tumors of African-American men and how those variations may be exploited to develop more personalized treatment approaches for this population.
Many of the most aggressive and hard-to-treat cancers are highly effective at blocking T cells from reaching and responding to tumors. But research led by Fumito Ito, MD, PhD, FACS, and Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center colleagues details a new strategy for overcoming this resistance by zeroing in on dendritic cells and enhancing their function as "accessory cells" supporting other immune cells.
A new study points to a need for oncologists to ask their patients about sexual health after chemotherapy, radiation, and other cancer treatments. In a survey of nearly 400 cancer survivors, 87 percent said they experienced sexual side effects, but most also said their oncologist had not formally asked about them. Female patients were especially unlikely to be asked about sexual dysfunction.
A new study led by VCU Massey Cancer Center researcher Jeanine Guidry, PhD, compared how HPV vaccination was portrayed on Pinterest before and after the social media platform began moderating vaccine-related content. Findings may help public health officials utilize social media to tackle potentially harmful rhetoric and disseminate trustworthy health information.
A new study led by researchers at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center and the University of Pittsburgh shows for the first time how certain drugs used to treat HIV and cancer drive the cellular aging process, at least in part, by blocking telomeres from replenishing themselves. Patty Opresko, PhD, is senior author on the study.
In a new medical records analysis of racial disparities in end-of-life care, researchers at Johns Hopkins Medicine and three collaborating institutions report that Black patients voluntarily seek substantially more intensive treatment, such as mechanical ventilation, gastronomy tube insertion, hemodialysis, CPR, and multiple emergency room visits in the last six months of life, while white patients more often choose hospice services.
A new modeling tool may be able to help doctors assess which treatments are best for individual patients with colorectal cancer. The artificial intelligence program analyzes a patient's disease details—such as the stage of cancer and other chronic conditions—and compares those details to other colorectal cancer cases to predict the patient's chance of surviving past 10 years.
Results from a leadership diversity survey conducted by AACI in partnership with The Cancer Letter (TCL) show that there’s a long road ahead in confronting cancer disparities in the oncology leadership pipeline. In an editorial published in the October 9 edition of TCL, AACI President Karen E. Knudsen, MBA, PhD, and Immediate Past President Roy A. Jensen, MD, shared their thoughts on the survey results.
Researchers affiliated with the Cancer Center at Illinois discovered a novel small molecule compound that is now the subject of a new global licensing agreement between the pharmaceutical company Bayer AG and the cancer drug development company Systems Oncology LLC.
The Focus Fund GP, LLC, in partnership with The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, has launched Cancer Focus Fund, LP, an oncology-focused investment fund designed to support the advancement of compelling investigational cancer therapies from late preclinical development through Phase I and Phase Ib/II clinical trials.