Remembering Eliezer A. Rachmilewitz, MD
Eliezer A. Rachmilewitz, MD, professor emeritus of medicine at the Hebrew University Hadassah Medical School in Jerusalem, died on December 17, 2017. Dr. Rachmilewitz was a pioneer in thalassemia research and was one of the first to recognize the relationship between oxidative stress and iron overload in various hematologic disorders.
Source: International BioIron Society, December 19, 2017.
Children’s Mercy Kansas City Receives $150 Million for Pediatric Cancer Research
The Hall Family Foundation and Sunderland Foundation each donated $75 million to Children’s Mercy Kansas City to enhance pediatric cancer research. The hospital will use the funding for the construction of the Children’s Research Institute and recruitment of top researchers to staff the facility. The approximately 375,000-square-foot, nine-floor research building will have nearly six times as much space for pediatric research than the current facility.
“Thanks to the unparalleled generosity of the Hall and Sunderland families, our Children’s Research Institute will allow us to accelerate even more precise diagnoses and treatments for complex childhood diseases, so we can provide groundbreaking care for the most difficult medical cases … in Kansas City and around the globe,” said Randall L. O’Donnell, PhD, president and chief executive officer of Children’s Mercy Kansas City.
Source: Children’s Mercy Kansas City news release, January 11, 2018.
Mohamad Cherry Joins Atlantic Health System
Mohamad Cherry, MD, formerly associate professor of hematology/oncology at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center’s Stephenson Cancer Center, joined Atlantic Health System’s Atlantic Medical Group.
During his time at the University of Oklahoma, Dr. Cherry conducted research on leukemia and lymphoma treatments. “He will help expand our ability to treat leukemia, lymphoma, and multiple myeloma, transforming the level of care available in this area for patients with these blood cancers,” said Eric Whitman, MD, medical director of Atlantic Health System Cancer Care.
Source: Atlantic Health System press release, December 14, 2017.
Joseph Mikhael Named New Chief Medical Officer at the International Myeloma Foundation
The International Myeloma Foundation (IMF) announced that Joseph R. Mikhael, MD, joined the organization as chief medical officer. He will work with Brian G.M. Durie, MD, IMF chairman and Scientific Advisory Board member, to advance the organization’s mission of improving the quality of life for people with multiple myeloma (MM) and working toward the disease’s prevention and cure.
“Dr. Mikhael brings extensive experience in MM treatment and research to his new position,” said Dr. Durie. “In addition, his experience on the global stage makes him perfectly suited to playing an important role in our growing research efforts around the world.”
Dr. Mikhael previously served as the associate dean of graduate medical education and deputy director of the Mayo Clinic Comprehensive Cancer Center in Phoenix, Arizona. Dr. Mikhael will remain in clinical and academic medicine with City of Hope Cancer Center. He also serves as a councillor for the American Society of Hematology.
Source: International Myeloma Foundation news release, January 22, 2018.
Andrew M. Evens Named Associate Director at Rutgers Cancer Institute
Andrew M. Evens, DO, MSc, formerly the director of the Cancer Center at Tufts Medical Center, has been named associate director for clinical services at the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey and RWJBarnabas Health.
In this role, Dr. Evens will provide integrated cancer care across both institutions and oversee and facilitate the integration of all multidisciplinary clinical programs, including those focused on survivorship, palliative care, and navigational support. Dr. Evens will also serve as the director of the Lymphoma Program in the Division of Blood Disorders at the Rutgers Cancer Institute, where he will lead a translational lymphoma laboratory investigating novel targeted treatments. In addition, he will serve as a professor of medicine at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.
Source: Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey press release, January 8, 2018.
NAS Awards James Allison for Outstanding Research
The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) awarded James P. Allison, PhD, chair of immunology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, the 2018 Jessie Stevenson Kovalenko Medal for outstanding research in medical sciences. The medal is awarded every two years, along with a $25,000 prize and $50,000 to support the recipient’s research.
“[Dr.] Allison’s pioneering research has had a vast impact on cancer therapy and the evolution of the entire field of cancer immunology,” said a representative of NAS.
Dr. Allison discovered the protein structure of the T-cell receptor, which led to subsequent discoveries, including the function of CD28 on T cells. His research continues to focus on the basic science of the immune system, as well as efficient ways to combine checkpoint blockade therapy with other drugs to extend the impact of immunotherapy for patients with cancer.
Source: National Academy of Sciences press release, January 17, 2018.