Awards and Honors
A Selection of Awards Recently Earned by Dana-Farber and Our Staff
October – December 2023
Dana-Farber’s Inpatient Hospital has been selected to receive two Press Ganey awards for exceptional patient experience:
The Guardian of Excellence Award is given to organizations that have consistently achieved the 95th percentile or higher for any of a set of designated survey measures, including Likelihood to Recommend, Overall Rating, and Teamwork.
The Pinnacle of Excellence Award recognizes the top performers based on performance on designated award survey measures for the three-year award period from April 2020 - March 2023.
The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) has been awarded an $11 million grant from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Initiative (PCORI) to support a clinical trial co-led by Erica Mayer, MD, MPH, director of Clinical Research in Breast Oncology and a physician at Dana-Farber. The national randomized trial will study CDK4/6 inhibitors in patients age 65 and older who have hormone receptor-positive metastatic breast cancer.
Kornelia Polyak, MD, PhD, researcher at Dana-Farber and professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School (HMS), is this year’s recipient of the Edward J. Benz Award for Advancing the Careers of Women Faculty. The distinction, offered through Dana-Farber’s Office for Faculty Development and Committee for Women Faculty, recognizes a faculty member’s dedication to advancing women’s careers through mentorship and a commitment to promoting women’s leadership.
Shail Maingi, MD, a medical oncologist at Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center in clinical affiliation with South Shore Hospital, has been named a 2023 Castle Connolly Top LGBTQ+ Doctor. The distinction, presented in partnership with GLMA: Health Professionals Advancing LGBTQ+ Equality, is part of Castle Connolly’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiative to honor top clinicians and enable patients to find clinicians with shared identities, backgrounds, and experiences.
Dana-Farber physician-scientists Mounica Vallurupalli, MD, a hematologist-oncologist, and Nina Weichert-Leahey, MD, a pediatric hematologist-oncologist, are two of the three recipients of this year’s Physician-Scientist Award from the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation. The distinction provides funding to physicians who have completed clinical specialty fellowships, and supports research that fosters the skills necessary for awardees to become leaders in their respective fields.
July – September 2023
Dana-Farber’s Adult and Pediatric Family Advisory Councils (PFAC) were recently honored with two PFACtor Awards at the 7th annual Patient Experience Symposium, hosted by the ICD Healthcare Network. The ICD Healthcare Network’s inaugural PFACtor Awards recognize leadership, creativity, and innovation factors in the implementation of these volunteer groups and other organizations with the same function.
For the 23rd consecutive year, Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center has been recognized as a Best Hospital for Cancer Care by U.S. News and World Report. This year, it ranked No. 5 in the nation, and was noted for being high performing in leukemia, lymphoma, myeloma, and surgery for colon, lung, ovarian, uterine, and prostate cancer.
Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center has been named the No. 2 program in the nation for pediatric cancer care on U.S. News and World Report’s 2023-24 Best Children’s Hospital report. Every year since the ranking’s inception, Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s has been recognized as one of the top three pediatric cancer centers in the country.
Newsweek has named Dana-Farber to its 2023 list of America’s Greatest Workplaces for Women. Companies recognized on this year’s list have a proven track record for creating more equitable and favorable workplaces for women.
Ming-Ru Wu, MD, PhD, a researcher in Dana-Farber's Department of Cancer Immunology and Virology, is one of 10 recipients recognized with the distinguished 2023 Harrington Scholar-Innovator Award. Wu, who is also an assistant professor of Immunology at Harvard Medical School, will use the award’s funding to advance his work in developing a synthetic gene circuit to treat melanoma.
Clark DuMontier, MD, MPH, a researcher and geriatrician in Brigham and Women’s Hospital’s division of Aging, and an affiliated faculty member in Dana-Farber's McGraw/Patterson Center for Population Sciences, has earned the American Society of Clinical Oncology's (ASCO) Conquer Cancer Career Development Award (CDA), sponsored by the Walther Cancer Foundation to promote supportive care in oncology. The award will support ethics research into the principles of overtreatment and undertreatment in older adults with cancer.
Four Dana-Farber scientists have received an infusion of support for their research with Wong Family Awards in Translational Oncology. The awards were established by the Wong Family in 2012 to support innovative projects in clinical and/or translational oncology, biotechnology development, precision medicine, or immunotherapy. The recipients for fiscal year 2023 were:
- Jacob Berchuck, MD, of the Lank Center for Genitourinary Oncology, who is working to improve doctors' abilities to identify patients with metastatic prostate cancer who are likely to benefit from drugs known as PARP inhibitors.
- Jaclyn LoPiccolo, MD, PhD, of the Department of Medical Oncology, is searching for possible inherited genetic mutations that are associated with an increased risk of lung cancer.
- Jeffrey Patterson-Fortin, MD, PhD, of the Department of Radiation Oncology, is exploring a way to turn immunologically "cold" pancreatic cancers – which the immune system largely ignores – into "hot" ones that draw an immune system attack.
- Jonathan Paolino, MD, an instructor in Pediatric Oncology in the lab of Yana Pikman, MD, is conducting tests with living cancer cells from patients with B-cell acute lymphocytic leukemia to determine the susceptibilities of these cells to certain targeted therapies.
April – June 2023
Joyce Liu, MD, PhD, of Dana-Farber’s Gynecologic Oncology Program, received the Victoria’s Secret Global Fund for Women’s Cancers Rising Innovator Research Grant, in Partnership with Pelotonia and the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR). The award supports midcareer female scientists conducting innovative research in breast and gynecologic cancers; it globally fosters innovation in prevention, interception, early detection, diagnosis, and treatment, with the goal of eliminating cancer health disparities and improving patient outcomes.
Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center has been named the No. 2 program in the nation for pediatric cancer care on U.S. News and World Report’s 2023-24 Best Children’s Hospital report. Every year since the ranking’s inception, Dana-Farber/ Boston Children’s has been recognized as one of the top three pediatric cancer centers in the country. Children's hospitals that receive this designation excel at clinical outcomes, level and quality of hospital resources directly related to patient care, and expert opinion among pediatric specialists.
Newsweek has named Dana-Farber to its 2023 list of “America’s Greatest Workplaces for Women.” Companies recognized have a proven track record for creating more equitable and favorable workplaces for women. The list includes the top 600 companies in the United States for women based on Newsweek’s research, reputation monitoring, and a survey of more than 37,000 women working for companies that employ at least 1,000 people.
Senior physicians Nikhil C. Munshi, MD, and Ann Partridge, MD, MPH, have been named “Giants of Cancer Care” by OncLive, the nation’s leading multimedia resource for oncology professionals. Munshi is the Kraft Family Chair, the director of Basic and Correlative Science in the Jerome Lipper Multiple Myeloma Center, and director of the Multiple Myeloma Immune Effector Cell Therapy Program at the Institute. Partridge is the vice chair of Medical Oncology, the Eric P. Winer Chair in Breast Cancer Research, the founder and director of the Program for Young Adults with Breast Cancer, and the director of the Adult Survivorship Program at the Institute.
Four Dana-Farber scientists have received an infusion of support for their research with Wong Family Awards in Translational Oncology – established by the Wong Family in 2012 to support innovative projects in clinical and/or translational oncology, biotechnology development, precision medicine, or immunotherapy. Recipients for fiscal year 2023 were: Jacob Berchuck, MD, of the Lank Center for Genitourinary Oncology, who is working to improve doctors' abilities to identify patients with metastatic prostate cancer who are likely to benefit from drugs known as PARP inhibitors; Jaclyn LoPiccolo, MD, PhD, of Medical Oncology, who is searching for possible inherited genetic mutations that are associated with an increased risk of lung cancer; Jeffrey Patterson-Fortin, MD, PhD, of Radiation Oncology, who is exploring a way to turn immunologically "cold" pancreatic cancers – which the immune system largely ignores – into "hot" ones that draw an immune system attack; and Jonathan Paolino, MD, an instructor in Pediatric Oncology, who is conducting tests with living cancer cells from patients with B-cell acute lymphocytic leukemia to determine the susceptibilities of these cells to certain targeted therapies.
January – March 2023
Rachel Pozzar, PhD, RN, a nurse-scientist in the Phyllis F. Cantor Center for Research in Nursing and Patient Care Services at Dana-Farber and an instructor in medicine at Harvard Medical School, is the recipient of the 2023 Oncology Nursing Society’s (ONS) Victoria Mock New Investigator Award. Given to a single candidate annually, the award recognizes the contributions of new investigators in building a scientific foundation for oncology nursing practice. Pozzar was recognized for her research aimed at overcoming barriers to delivering high-quality supportive cancer care. She designed the Collaborative Agenda-Setting Intervention (CASI) for patients with gynecologic cancers, which allows for patient-clinician communication to be optimized as part of routine treatment practice.
Dana-Farber scientists in Hematologic Malignancies have received separate grants to fund two ambitious, collaborative research efforts:
- One project is aimed at defining the mechanisms underlying chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD). A $12 million grant from the National Institutes of Health will support research on cGVHD, focusing on “the critical questions that plague the field of cGVHD” and “the shortcoming in our understanding of the pathogenesis of human cGVHD,” says Corey Cutler, MD, MPH, director of the Adult Stem Cell Transplantation Program, who is leading the grant. Within the broad research program, Cutler will specifically investigate bronchiolitis obliterans syndrome (BOS), an uncommon but devastating complication of GVHD that affects the lungs.
- The other project seeks to identify causes of relapses following stem cell transplantation for acute myelogenous leukemia (AML). The grant, from the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, provides $5 million over five years to a Specialized Center of Research (SCOR) program led by Robert Soiffer, MD, chief of Hematologic Malignancies and vice chair of Medical Oncology at Dana-Farber. The SCOR brings together an international group of collaborators focusing on patients with AML who relapse after transplantation.
Four Institute researchers rank among the 2022 "Best Female Scientists in the World" list released by science research portal Research.com. The list is the first of its kind and includes the top 1,000 female scientists from around the world out of a total of 166,880 researchers across 24 fields. Research.com bases its ranking on the H-index, which reflects the number of papers published by the researcher and the influence of those papers based on citations. The methodology that determines the ranking draws on data from Microsoft Academics, the largest open bibliometric database. Dana-Farber faculty included in this list include:
- Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, Dana-Farber president and CEO and Richard and Susan F. Smith Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, focuses on the molecular pathways of immune cells and their role in autoimmune and infectious diseases and cancer. She discovered the transcriptional regulatory proteins that control these important immune checkpoints.
- Judy Garber, MD, chief of Cancer Genetics and Prevention, focuses her research on understanding the genetic factors that increase the risk of breast cancer and applying that knowledge to improve treatment and prevention.
- Donna Neuberg, ScD, senior statistician for leukemia, lymphoma, and benign hematology programs, focuses on the planning and analysis of studies that integrate laboratory outcomes at the genome, transcriptome, or proteome level with clinical and demographic information.
- Kornelia Polyak, MD, PhD, professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, focuses on the molecular analysis of breast cancer, with the intent to improve the clinical management of breast cancer patients.
July – December 2022
Dana-Farber has been recognized by Press Ganey with a Guardian of Excellence Award for Outstanding Achievement in Workforce Engagement, in recognition of our 2021 Staff Engagement Survey results. The award is presented to organizations whose Overall Engagement scores ranked in the 95th percentile for their category. Dana-Farber’s Staff engagement scores increased in 2021, at a time when many healthcare organizations experienced a decline in engagement scores. This is a recognition of the many efforts that Dana-Farber made, both in response to our prior Engagement results and through the enhanced support provided to our workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, president and CEO of Dana-Farber, is among the 2022 class of Modern Healthcare’s "50 Most Influential Clinical Executives." The award program honors individuals in health care who are deemed by their peers and the senior editors of Modern Healthcare to be paving the way to better health through their executive responsibility, leadership qualities, innovation, community service, and achievements inside and outside of their respective organizations. Dr. Glimcher is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine, and the American Philosophical Society; a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; and the former president of the American Association of Immunologists.
April – June 2022
U.S. News & World Report named Dana-Farber/Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center No. 1 in the nation in its 2022-23 “Best Children's Hospitals” report. It is the ninth consecutive year that Dana-Farber/Boston Children's has been recognized as one of the top three pediatric cancer centers in the country each year since the ranking's inception, earning more No. 1 rankings than any other program. “This is a testament to our outstanding doctors, nurses, and staff who work tirelessly to provide exceptional clinical care while also conducting world-class research, on behalf of patients and their families,” said Scott A. Armstrong, MD, PhD, president of Dana-Farber/ Boston Children’s.
The Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI) has designated Dana-Farber as a Comprehensive Radiopharmaceutical Therapy Center of Excellence. This distinction is a testament to the steadfast work being done in nuclear medicine at the Institute to further the field through research and quality patient care. SNMMI is a scientific nonprofit organization that promotes the research, technology, and clinical practice of nuclear medicine, molecular imaging, and radiopharmaceutical therapy. SNMMI Radiopharmaceutical Centers of Excellence meet strict regulatory, training, experience, and performance criteria to ensure excellence in the field.
Dana-Farber has once again been designated as an LGBTQ Healthcare Equality Leader by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation (HRC). The distinction is achieved through evaluation by the Healthcare Equality Index (HEI) – in which the Institute earned a perfect score – an annual survey that measures inclusive policies and practices related to LGBTQ+ patients, visitors, and staff.
William G. Kaelin Jr., MD, is the recipient of the Harriet P. Dustan Award for Outstanding Work in Science as Related to Medicine by the American College of Physicians (ACP), a national organization of internists. Established in 1958, this award acknowledges outstanding work in science as related to medicine. Scientists of any country and in any field, whether nonclinical or clinical, biochemical, biological, physical, or social, are eligible for this award. Kaelin is a 2019 Nobel Prize Laureate for Medicine or Physiology (with Sir Peter J. Ratcliffe and Gregg L. Semenza).
Pasi A. Jänne, MD, PhD, director of the Lowe Center of Thoracic Oncology at Dana-Farber, received the Léopold Griffuel Award from Foundation ARC, a French nonprofit for cancer research, for his translational and clinical oncological endeavors. In 2004, Jänne discovered genetic mutations in the cells of certain lung cancers which activate the EGF receptor and lead to the accumulation of cancerous cells in the lung. His discovery contributed to the development of drugs that block the abnormally activated EGF receptor, and those drugs are now routinely used in the treatment of certain cancers of the lung.
Margaret Campbell, BSN, RN, received the CURE Extraordinary Healer® 2022 Award during a prestigious dinner event at the Oncology Nursing Society’s annual meeting in Anaheim, California. This annual award is hosted by CURE®, one of the largest publications dedicated to covering the world of cancer care. A panel selected Campbell, a research nurse in breast oncology, for demonstrating extraordinary expertise in her field of cancer care. She was nominated by her colleague Nancy Lin, MD, who referred to her as an "excellent clinician."
Stuart H. Orkin, MD, has been named a 2022 Canada Gairdner Award laureate by The Gairdner Foundation. Orkin, the David G. Nathan Distinguished Professor of Pediatrics at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center and Harvard Medical School, and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, was recognized for the discovery of the molecular mechanism responsible for the switch from fetal to adult hemoglobin gene expression during human development, and translating that into a novel treatment for the hemoglobin disorders known as sickle cell disease and beta-thalassemia.
January – March 2022
The Worksite Wellness Council of Massachusetts (WWCMA) has recognized Dana-Farber as one of the healthiest workplaces in the state. The award acknowledges the Institute’s achievements in developing, implementing, and participating in corporate health-improvement and wellness programs. “We are proud to recognize innovative employers for their outstanding wellness programs focusing on the health and well-being of their employees, especially now with the challenges brought on by COVID-19,” Kristie Howard, WWCMA’s board chair commented.
Narjust Duma, MD, associate director of Dana-Farber’s Cancer Care Equity Program, and assistant professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, was selected as a Healio Honoree. Healio Honorees are health care professionals who go above and beyond in their fields and for their patients. “Dr. Duma has distinguished herself as a leader due to her unparalleled commitment to promoting equity and diversity in medicine,” reads one nomination. “She serves as a fearless role model to women and people of color in academic medicine.”
Three Dana-Farber scientists, recipients of the ’22 Wong Family Awards in Translational Oncology, are pursuing innovative research spanning several areas. The awards, established to advance innovative projects in clinical and/or translational oncology, biotechnology development, precision medicine, or immunotherapy, aim to help make personalized medicine a reality for all patients. The recipients are:
- Riaz Gillani, MD, a pediatric oncologist whose work is on Dissecting the contribution and inheritance of germline DNA damage repair genes in neuroblastoma.
- Eric Smith, MD, PhD, an assistant professor in Medical Oncology, whose project is Developing TROP2 targeted immunotherapy for NSCLC as a model to advance molecular barcode-based pooled screenings for optimal specificity and function.
- Yang (Claire) Zeng, MD, PhD, Instructor in Cancer Biology, whose work is on In situ vaccination by a neoantigen-capturing DNA origami platform for enhanced anti-tumoral immune response.
Praful Ravi, MB, BChir, MRCP, of Genitourinary Oncology, is a recipient of the 2021 John Paulson-Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) Young Investigator Award. Ravi earned this award for his research in neoadjuvant therapy with intense androgen-receptor targeted therapy to improve outcomes in high-risk localized prostate cancer. PCF Young Investigator Awards recognize a cohort of future research leaders who will keep the field of prostate cancer research vibrant with new ideas.
Eric Smith, MD, PhD, director of Translational Research, Immune Effector Cell Therapies, was recently selected as a “performer” for the Wellcome/LEAP R3 initiative to advance RNA-based technologies. Smith and his team are one of 17 international research groups selected to develop novel mRNA-based therapies and will collaborate to upscale their mRNA manufacturing to help increase access to diverse biologics and create sustainable future pandemic responses.
Gordon Freeman, PhD, a leading researcher in Medical Oncology at Dana-Farber and professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, has been named an Inaugural Fellow of the Academy of Immuno-Oncology of 2021 by the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC). The Academy honors individuals who helped make immunotherapy a breakthrough cancer treatment. Freeman was recognized for discovering PD-L1, a molecule on cancer cells which links with PD-1 on T cells, forming a pathway that inhibits immune responses and therefore is central to the issue of T-cell exhaustion.
Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, Dana-Farber president and CEO, was named to Forbes Healthcare Summit’s list of “Top 10 Leaders of the Decade in Healthcare” during their annual event. The list acknowledges influential figures for their role in progressing health care, medicine, and science. “Laurie Glimcher’s empathetic leadership, determination, and dedication to transformative research have powered a series of career firsts that continue to impact the health care sector – from medicine to the role of women in science," the Forbes announcement read.
October – December 2021
Jessica Tsai, MD, PhD, a pediatric oncologist at Dana-Farber, was recently named a Next Generation Leader by the Allen Institute. Tsai will join five other early career researchers on a unique neuroscience advisory panel. Tsai, a postdoctoral scholar and physician, is being recognized for her contributions to the neuro-oncology field. The Allen Institute is a nonprofit research organization dedicated to answering big questions in bioscience and accelerating research worldwide.
Dana-Farber’s Mary E. Cooley, PhD, RN, and Michael Healey, MD, of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, were awarded funding by the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) Oncology Research Program (ORP) for their project, “Optimizing the Process and Uptake of Lung Cancer Screening Among Patients, Providers, and Across the Health Care System.” Cooley is a nurse scientist in the Phyllis F. Cantor Center for Research, in Nursing and Patient Care Services. NCCN is a nonprofit alliance of leading cancer centers devoted to patient care, research, and education. Its goal is to improve and facilitate quality, efficient, and accessible cancer care to improve the lives of patients.
The Commonwealth Institute (TCI) and Boston Globe Magazine have ranked Dana-Farber as the top woman-led business in Massachusetts, honoring Institute President and CEO Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, as an exceptional hospital leader. Glimcher has been at the helm of Dana-Farber since 2016 and is the first woman to hold its role of President and CEO. She is a trailblazer in cancer research, and world-renowned for identifying key transcriptional regulators of protective immunity and the origin of pathophysiologic immune responses underlying autoimmune, infectious, and malignant diseases. Glimcher is a strong advocate and proponent for improving access to health care, improving health policy and medical education, while also serving as a mentor and role model for cancer research trainees and for all women in science.
Daphne Haas-Kogan, MD, Chair of Dana-Farber's Department of Radiation Oncology, has earned the 2021 Edward J. Benz Jr. Award for Advancing the Careers of Women Faculty. Presented by the Office for Faculty Development and Committee for Women Faculty, the award is named after Dana-Farber’s President Emeritus Edward J. Benz Jr., MD. It honors a faculty member who has gone above and beyond to advance women’s careers. Haas-Kogan is cited for her commitment to mentoring and being a consummate role model.
Judy Garber, MD, MPH, chief of Cancer Genetics and Prevention at Dana-Farber, and Susan F. Smith Center chair, has been honored with the prestigious Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction in Clinical Research by the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. The award honors a researcher who has significantly advanced breast cancer care and medicine. Garber was recognized for her groundbreaking research on the role of the BRCA gene mutation in breast cancer, and the treatment and prevention of triple-negative breast cancer and other BRCA-associated cancers.
Philip Kranzusch, PhD, a principal investigator in Dana-Farber's Department of Cancer Immunology and Virology, has earned the New Innovator Award from the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) High-Risk, High-Reward Research program. The prestigious award supports exceptionally creative early career investigators pursuing research with the potential for broad impact in biomedical, behavioral, or social sciences. Kranzusch is among 106 highly distinguished researchers who will receive funding over five years to further his impact on – and address challenges in relation to – biomedical science.
July – September 2021
The Massachusetts Life Sciences Center recently awarded Dana-Farber a $1.82 million grant titled, Mass Spectrometry Metabolomics Solutions for Highly Scalable Integrated Omics: Charting Metabolic Contributions to Disease Development and Therapeutic Outcomes. The award will help support a new facility at Dana-Farber to provide cutting-edge metabolomics tools for researchers. It will include a unique technology for systematic application of discovery metabolomics for fast, accurate high-resolution mass profiling of complex biologic samples from patients, and integration with other “omics” data. This data can provide novel insights into metabolic control of cell physiology, disease processes, or response to therapy that can profoundly impact our basic understanding and clinical treatments. “This critical investment will allow Dana-Farber to expand its use of metabolomics, an exciting technology that can enhance both our understanding of cancer biology as well as therapeutic outcomes,” said Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, Dana-Farber's president and CEO.
Five Dana-Farber faculty members have been selected to join the 2021 Giants of Cancer Care® Program. Giants of Cancer Care celebrates the achievements of leading researchers and educators whose discoveries have helped propel the field of oncology and established the building blocks for future advances. New members from Dana-Farber are:
- Toni Choueiri, MD, director of the Lank Center for Genitourinary Oncology
- Pasi Jänne, MD, PhD, director of the Lowe Center for Thoracic Oncology
- Matthew Meyerson, MD, PhD, director of the Center for Cancer Genomics
- Paul Richardson, MD, director of Clinical Research of the Jerome Lipper Multiple Myeloma Center
- Richard Stone, MD, director of Translational Research of the Adult Leukemia Program
Three senior scientists have received grants from the Dana-Farber's Accelerator Program for research with the potential to be rapidly put to clinical use. The program, administered by the Belfer Office for Dana-Farber Innovations, is designed to close the gap between scientific advances and the translation of those advances into new and better therapies for patients. Funds are awarded for one year to bring research projects to the stage where they can attract investment for clinical development. The 2021 recipients are:
- Pasi Jänne, MD, PhD, director of the Lowe Center for Thoracic Oncology, whose project is The Development of Next-generation Drugs That Target the EGFR Protein in Patients with Non-small Cell Lung Cancer Resistant to the Drug Osimertinib
- Jerome Ritz, MD, director of the Connell and O’Reilly Families Cell Manipulation Core Facility, whose project is The Production and Testing of a Novel CAR T-cell Therapy That Harnesses “Helper” T Cells to Cure Patients with Hard-to-treat B-cell Malignancies
- Eric Smith, MD, PhD, director of Translational Research for Immune Effector Cell Therapies, whose project is Using Genetically Engineered Hematopoietic Stem Cells as Factories for CAR-effector Cells
April – June 2021
U.S. News & World Report has named Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center the top pediatric cancer program in New England and No.2 in the nation in its 2021-22 Best Children’s Hospitals report. Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s has been recognized as one of the top three pediatric cancer centers in the country each year since the ranking’s inception, earning more No.1 rankings than any other hospital. Boston Children’s Hospital remains the No.1 pediatric hospital in the nation for the eighth consecutive year in U.S. News’ top hospital listings.
Make-A-Wish® Massachusetts and Rhode Island has named Dana-Farber as recipient of the 2021 Community Hero Award. Institute President and CEO Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, accepted the award on April 10 during the Make-A-Wish Gala: Heroes for Hope, a virtual event. The Community Hero Award recognizes an organization or individual providing vital partnership in the Make-A-Wish Massachusetts and Rhode Island mission to create life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. Dana-Farber has championed the Make-A-Wish mission for more than 30 years, referring more than 2,500 children in Massachusetts and Rhode Island to experience the powerful impact of a wish fulfilled.
A. Thomas Look, MD, of Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, has received the 2021 Society of Memorial Sloan Kettering Prize. The Society Prize is awarded annually to a researcher, physician, or team leader who has made a positive and lasting impact in the fight against pediatric cancer. Founded in 1946, The Society of Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) is a volunteer-led organization within MSK dedicated to promoting the well-being of patients, supporting cancer research, and providing education on the early prevention, detection, and treatment of cancer.
Alan D’Andrea, MD, director of the Susan F. Smith Center for Women’s Cancers and the Center for DNA Damage and Repair at Dana-Farber, has been elected to the prestigious National Academy of Sciences (NAS). The election recognizes D’Andrea’s distinguished and continuing achievements in original scientific research. D’Andrea also serves as the Fuller-American Cancer Society Professor of Radiation Oncology at Harvard Medical School. Scientists are elected by their peers to the National Academy of Sciences for their outstanding contributions to research. D'Andrea is internationally recognized for his research in DNA damage and repair.
George Demetri, MD, director of the Center for Sarcoma and Bone Oncology at Dana-Farber, has been elected a Fellow of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Academy. AACR Academy Fellows serve as a global brain trust of top contributors to cancer science and medicine; they help advance the mission of the AACR to prevent and cure all cancers through research, education, communication, collaboration, science policy and advocacy, and funding for cancer research. Only individuals whose work has had a significant and enduring impact on cancer research are considered for election and induction into the AACR Academy.
January – March 2021
Dana-Farber, the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, and Count Me In, a nonprofit research initiative that conducts patient-partnered studies of cancer, have been awarded a new, $16 million grant from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to accelerate research in two rare forms of cancer. The funding will support research projects in leiomyosarcoma and osteosarcoma, two cancers that have seen few recent therapeutic advances. The projects will also yield new information about the best ways to engage with patients traditionally underrepresented in cancer research.
Benjamin Ebert, MD, PhD, chair of Medical Oncology at Dana-Farber, the George P. Canellos, MD, and the Jean S. Canellos Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and member of the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, has received the Sjöberg Prize, an international accolade given annually for cancer research. Ebert was honored for his discovery of the mode of action of lenalidomide in the treatment of hematological disorders.
Ebert has also received the prestigious Stanley J. Korsmeyer Award from the American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI) for his contributions to the understanding of the genetics, biology, and treatment of myeloid malignancies. The award recognizes the outstanding achievements of ASCI members in advancing knowledge in a specific field and in mentoring future generations of life science researchers. The award is named in honor of Stanley J. Korsmeyer, MD, a Dana-Farber faculty member, and a dedicated and accomplished physician-scientist mentor.
Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, Dana-Farber president and CEO, has been recognized by Modern Healthcare as one of 2021’s Women Leaders Luminaries. The honorees are high achievers who are developing policy, leading change, and guiding health care delivery improvement across the U.S.
The MDS Foundation has honored Ilene Galinsky, BSN, MSN, with its Compassionate Care Award, and Coleman Lindsley, MD, PhD, with its Nobility in Science Award.
Galinsky has been at Dana-Farber for 32 years and is the Senior Adult Leukemia Program research nurse practitioner for the Adult Leukemia Program at Dana-Farber and Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
Lindsley is an assistant professor of Medicine at Dana-Farber and Harvard Medical School. His research focuses on basic and translational investigations of myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML) – specifically on understanding the impact of somatic genetic alterations on disease progression and clinical outcomes in patients undergoing allogeneic stem cell transplantation.
Bruce Spiegelman, PhD, recently received the Albert Renold Award, which is a part of the American Diabetes Association’s (ADA) 2021 National Scientific and Health Care Achievement Awards. This award is presented to an individual whose career is distinguished by outstanding achievements in the training and mentorship of scientists focused on diabetes, and in the development of scientific communities to enhance diabetes research. Spiegelman’s work focuses on the molecular basis of adipose tissue development and function including systematic metabolism and mitochondrial-dependent energy balance. His work has had translational impact in how obesity and diabetes are treated, as well as advances in cancer metabolism.
Stuart H. Orkin, MD, of Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, is the recipient of the 2021 Gruber Genetics Prize. Orkin is a hematologist-oncologist and geneticist, and is being recognized for his pioneering discoveries of the genetic underpinnings of blood disorders. His work has not only revolutionized our understanding of how these illnesses occur, but has also led to promising new gene-based therapies for thalassemia and sickle cell disease, two inherited blood disorders that affect millions of people. Orkin is also the David G. Nathan Distinguished Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.
Natasha Archer, MD, a physician at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, and an assistant professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, has been awarded a K08 Clinical Investigator Award by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) for her project, “Red blood cell modifiers for plasmodium falciparum growth in sickle cell disease erythrocytes.” The award provides individuals who have a clinical doctoral degree with an intensive, supervised, research career development experience.
The Wong Family Awards program began in 2012 and the endowment provides a distribution that funds the awards annually: the amount for fiscal 2021 is $300,000. This year’s recipients and their projects are:
- Wallace Bourgeois, MD, who aims to determine if certain novel drugs used in adults might be effective in treating acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in children. The need is great because only one new drug has been approved in the past 20 years for treating pediatric AML, while there have been eight new drug approvals in the past five years for adults with AML, according to Bourgeois.
- Rizwan Haq, MD, PhD, and Scott Rodig, MD, PhD, who are working to identify immunologic barriers to effective immunotherapy in uveal melanoma. This extremely rare form of cancer affects the eye, and in more than 50% of patients, the melanoma will spread to other parts of the body with fatal results. Haq and Rodig are using a sophisticated technique called multiplexed ion beam imaging to identify the type of immune cells present in uveal melanoma tumors: these immune cells could be what prevents existing melanoma therapies from working in the eye.
- Yufei Wang, PhD, who will use her Wong Family award funding to develop chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells capable of mounting an immune response against solid tumors. CAR T-cell therapy has been used successfully in blood cancers but less so in solid tumors for a variety of reasons. She will equip the CAR T cells with a fine-tuned molecule that will prevent them from being activated by the smaller number of cancer-related antigens on normal cells, thus avoiding side effects. She is also engineering the CAR T cells with an immune checkpoint inhibitor (ICI) antibody to restore the active anti-tumor immunity and keep the tumor from turning off the CAR T cells. In her project, Wang will create miniature tumors in the laboratory made from patient samples of metastatic clear cell renal cell carcinoma, to test how well the CAR T cells are working.
Researchers from Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center have received a $14.4 million federal grant for a team-based research project aiming to improve immune-based treatments for glioblastomas, the most lethal brain tumors. The National Cancer Institute grant will fund the research of 11 investigators in four integrated research projects under the leadership of David Reardon, MD, clinical director of Neuro-Oncology, and E. Antonio Chiocca, MD, PhD, both of Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center. The project’s goal is to improve the body’s immune cell recognition and destruction of glioblastoma cells. In addition to Reardon and Chiocca, team members affiliated with Dana-Farber are: Gordon Freeman, PhD; Donna Neuberg, ScD; Mario Suva, MD, PhD; Catherine Wu, MD; and Kai Wucherpfennig, MD, PhD.
October – December 2020
Dana-Farber has once again been designated as an LGBTQ Health Care Equality Leader by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation (HRC). This distinction is achieved through evaluation by the Healthcare Equality Index (in which the Institute earned a perfect score), an annual survey that measures inclusive policies and practices related to LGBTQ+ patients, visitors, and staff. “This distinction tells us we’re on the right path for creating an equitable care experience for everyone,” explains Ildemaro Gonzalez, vice president, Dana-Farber's chief inclusion and diversity officer. “It’s part of our conscious effort to show patients and employees that when you’re here you can be yourself, and that all are welcomed."
Sarah J. Hill, MD, PhD, has received the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director’s Early Independence Award for her project titled, “Dissecting the Interaction Between DNA Damage Repair Defects and the Tumor Microenvironment.” The award “supports exceptional junior scientists who have recently received their doctoral degree or completed their medical residency to skip traditional postdoctoral training and move immediately into independent research positions.” Hill is a faculty member of both Medical Oncology and Molecular and Cellular Oncology at Dana-Farber.
Ursula A. Matulonis, MD, has been named this year’s Albany Medical School College Alumni Association’s Distinguished Alumna. Matulonis is chief of Gynecologic Oncology at the Susan F. Smith Center for Women’s Cancers and the Brock-Wilson Family Chair at Dana-Farber. The Distinguished Alumna award honors an alumnus who has earned national recognition for outstanding leadership in health care.
Loren Walensky, MD, PhD, has recently been named to Nature Bioentrepreneur’s Top 20 Translational Researchers of 2019 list which recognizes researchers who are actively developing biotechnology to meet a clinical need. Walensky’s clinical interests are hematologic malignancies and his research is directly related to understanding and treating those malignancies. Nature Bioentrepreneur’s Top 20 Translational Researchers list is based on the researcher’s total number of patents and includes their top-cited patents.
Four Dana-Farber physicians have been named to Expertscape’s Top 15 Breast Cancer Specialists list. They are: Harold Burstein, MD, PhD, institute physician and professor of medicine; Ian Krop, MD, PhD, associate chief, Breast Oncology; Ann Partridge, MD, MPH, vice chair of Medical Oncology at Dana-Farber, director of the Adult Survivorship Program, and founder and director for the Young and Strong Program for Young Adults with Breast Cancer; and Eric P. Winer, MD, senior vice president for Medical Affairs and chief Clinical Development officer, and director of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center Breast Cancer's Specialized Program of Research Excellence. Expertscape is an online platform that identifies and ranks physicians and researchers that excel in the treatment and diagnosis of specific disease conditions.
Lyn Jones, PhD, and Matthew Meyerson, MD, PhD, of Dana-Farber have been named American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Fellows among the 489 members selected this year. Meyerson was selected for Biological Sciences and Jones for Pharmaceutical Sciences. Election as a fellow honors members whose efforts advance science or its applications in service to society have distinguished them among their peers and colleagues. Meyerson is the director of the Center for Cancer Genomics at Dana-Farber as well as a professor of Pathology at Dana-Farber and Harvard Medical School. Jones is now the director of the Center for Protein Degradation at Dana-Farber.
Mark Awad, MD, PhD, is recipient of the 2020 ALK-Positive Lung Cancer Research Award. LUNGevity in partnership with ALK-Positive, selected three physicians who focus on high-impact research related to the treatment of ALK-positive non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The award supports efforts that will transform the disease into a chronic or potentially curable condition instead of a deadly one.
George P. Canellos, MD, will receive this year’s OncLive Giants of Cancer Care award for lymphoma. Canellos, a senior physician with Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Hospital, is being recognized for his extensive work in the diagnosis and treatment of this cancer. He is one of 15 being honored with the Giants of Cancer Care award in a variety of cancer areas. He has also been the recipient of several other illustrious awards throughout his career. OncLive’s Giants of Cancer Care award program was developed in 2013 to “celebrate the achievements of leading researchers and educators whose discoveries have helped propel the field forward and established the building blocks for future advances.” The award recognizes individuals who have achieved landmark successes within the global field of oncology.
Donald Alexis, of Dana-Farber Information Services, has been named to the Boston Business Journal’s “40 Under 40” list. This annual award recognizes Boston's “best and brightest young professionals.” Alexis was recognized for his work as president of Caribbean Integration Community Development (CICD), a housing and community development organization that “creates and maintains affordable housing in areas of Boston where large numbers of people of Caribbean descent reside.”
July – September 2020
Dana-Farber is one of 16 health care organizations across the U.S. receiving the Employer of Excellence award from the American Association of Physician Assistants’ (AAPA) Center for Healthcare Leadership and Management (CHLM). The award showcases organizations that have implemented practices that create positive work environments for physician assistants (PAs) and encourage collaborative provider teams, stating that “our country needs health care providers working together to meet the demand for high-quality care. Employer of Excellence winners serve —as outstanding examples of how organizations can establish modern, efficient workplaces that ensure patients get the care they need.”
Lesley Solomon, MBA, Dana-Farber’s senior vice president and chief Innovation officer, is one of 10 health care leaders in Massachusetts honored with the 2020 Extraordinary Women Advancing Health Care Awards. Each year, the Commonwealth Institute recognizes 10 remarkable leaders shaping health care in Massachusetts. The awards recognize and support recipients for their outstanding career achievements, demonstrating collaboration, mentorship, innovation, and encouraging diversity.
Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, Dana-Farber’s president and CEO, has been recognized by the Boston Municipal Research Bureau with the 2020 Henry L. Shattuck Public Service Award – Champion of Business. The award honors individuals who provide dedicated public service to the city of Boston and its community, acknowledging individuals who exemplify “integrity, initiative, leadership, and commitment to the public good.”
Kirsty Hillier, MD, a third-year pediatric hematology/oncology fellow at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, is recipient of the American Society of Hematology's (ASH) Research Training Award for Fellows. The award aims to “encourage junior researchers in hematology, hematology/oncology, and other hematology-related training programs to pursue careers in academic hematology.” Hillier treats patients with hematologic and oncologic disorders at Dana-Farber, and pursues her research interest of the development of lymphocytes and autoreactivity in disorders of the immune system.
The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation has awarded Dana-Farber’s Kenneth Kehl, MD, MPH; David Liu, MD, MPH, MS; and Srinivas R. Viswanathan, MD, PhD, the 2020 Doris Duke Clinical Scientist Development Award (CSDA). The nationwide program received 208 applicants for this year’s award, which provides “grants to junior physician-scientists to facilitate their transition to independent clinical research careers.”
William G. Kaelin Jr., MD, has been named the Association of American Cancer Institutes’ Distinguished Scientist for 2020. The AACI is recognizing Kaelin, the Sidney Farber Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and an investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, for his long-term research on how cells sense and adapt to changing oxygen levels. The AACI Distinguished Scientist Award was created in 2002 to recognize a major contributor to the field of cancer research.
David Frank, MD, PhD, an associate professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, has been named Chair-Elect of the Medical Sciences section of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Frank’s research lab studies signaling pathways that are important in normal cell growth which become corrupted in cancer. These studies have led to the identification of new targeted therapies currently being tested in clinical trials. The AAAS is the largest multidisciplinary scientific society in the world, and is the publisher of the journal Science.
George D. Demetri, MD, director of Dana-Farber’s Sarcoma Center, senior vice president for Experimental Therapeutics, and professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, has been honored with the David A. Karnofsky Memorial Award and Lecture by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO). The award recognizes an oncologist who has made outstanding contributions to cancer research, diagnosis, and/or treatment. Demetri specializes in sarcomas and studying their biological characteristics in order to help create new therapies to target them. Demetri was instrumental in developing a therapy to treat gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST).
February – June 2020
U.S. News & World Report has named Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center the top pediatric cancer program in New England and No. 2 in the nation in its 2020-21 Best Children’s Hospitals list. Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s has been recognized as one of the top three pediatric cancer centers in the country each year since the ranking’s inception in 2007, including more No. 1 rankings than any other program. Boston Children’s Hospital remains the No. 1 pediatric hospital in the nation for the seventh year in a row in U.S. News’ top hospital listings.
New England Patriots owner and Institute Trustee Robert K. Kraft has made another gift to honor his longtime partnership with Dana-Farber: the endowed Kraft Family Chair to support the Institute’s innovative work in hematological malignancies. The Chair will be renamed the Kraft Family and Kenneth C. Anderson, MD, Chair at Dana-Farber, to recognize Anderson’s preeminence in multiple myeloma research.
Heng Li, PhD, assistant professor of Biostatistics and Computational Biology in Data Sciences, will receive funding from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) to support open source software projects that are essential to biomedical research. CZI’s Essential Open Source Software for Science program announced $5 million in funding for these grants to support software maintenance, growth, development, and community engagement for more than 40 critical open source tools.
Wendy London, PhD, along with international investigators, recently received a three-year grant from Solving Kids’ Cancer to analyze biomarkers of survival in high-risk neuroblastoma. Her project is titled, “International Integrated Analysis to Identify Markers of Poor Survival in High-risk Neuroblastoma.” London holds positions as an associate professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, director of Biostatistics of Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, and faculty director of the Survey and Data Management Core of Dana-Farber Harvard Cancer Center.
Stuart H. Orkin, MD, of Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, a David G. Nathan Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, and an investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has been named a 2020 King Faisal Prize Laureate in Medicine for his research contributions in hemoglobin disorders.
Harvey Cantor, MD, the Baruj Benacerraf Professor of Immunology at Harvard Medical School, has been named a 2020 Distinguished Fellow of the American Association of Immunologists (AAI). The program annually recognizes long-term members who have demonstrated excellence in research accomplishment in the field of immunology; exceptional leadership to the immunology community in academia, foundations, nonprofits, industry, or government at a national or international level; and/or notable distinction as an educator. It is among the highest honors presented by AAI.
Sandy Monteiro, BSN, RN, has been honored with the 2020 Excellence in Nursing Award from the New England Region of the Black Nurses Association. The annual distinction is given to nurses who, in addition to their clinical skills, demonstrate their understanding of the increasing needs of ethnically, racially, and culturally diverse populations.
Alan D’Andrea, MD, director of the Susan F. Smith Center for Women’s Cancers and director of the Center for DNA Damage and Repair at Dana-Farber, has been honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Fanconi Anemia Research Fund (FARF). D’Andrea was recognized for dedicating his 30-plus-year career to the advancement of Fanconi anemia (FA) research, and for making tremendous discoveries in understanding DNA damage in FA and how the FA pathway works. Defects in this pathway account for the chromosome instability and drug sensitivity of many cancers, including women’s cancers, in the general (non-FA) population.
The Pancreatic Cancer Collective, the strategic partnership of the Lustgarten Foundation and Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C), has awarded up to $16 million to four teams of top researchers, including a team at Dana-Farber, as part of its New Therapies Challenge Grants. The Dana-Farber team will receive up to $4 million over a three-year term for their project led by Alan D. D’Andrea, MD, director of Dana-Farber’s Susan F. Smith Center for Women’s Cancers and director of the Center for DNA Damage and Repair, and James M. Cleary, MD, PhD. Key collaborators include Geoffrey Shapiro, MD, PhD, director of the Early Drug Development Center and clinical director of the Center for DNA Damage and Repair; Brian M. Wolpin, MD, MPH, director of the Gastrointestinal Cancer Center and the Hale Family Research Center, and the Robert T. and Judith B. Hale Chair in Pancreatic Cancer; and Andrew Aguirre, MD, PhD.
Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, Dana-Farber president and CEO, recently was named among “The 100 Most Influential People in Boston.” The list, composed and published by Boston Magazine, includes politicians, philanthropists, business moguls, and more. Glimcher was recognized for being a renowned immunologist, a “top-notch” fundraiser, and having a collaborative spirit.
Three Dana-Farber faculty members are among the 19 international scientists recently elected to the prestigious Fellows of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Academy. The AACR Academy recognizes and honors distinguished scientists whose scientific contributions have propelled significant innovation and progress against cancer. The members of the 2020 class of Fellows of the AACR Academy from Dana-Farber are:
- Myles A. Brown, MD, Emil Frei III Professor of Medicine, and director of the Center for Functional Cancer Epigenetics
- Alan D. D’Andrea, MD, director of the Susan F. Smith Center and director of the Center for DNA Damage and Repair
- Kornelia Polyak, MD, PhD, professor of medicine
Edward J. Benz, Jr. MD, president and CEO Emeritus of Dana-Farber and the Richard and Susan Smith Distinguished Professor at Harvard Medical School, has received the American Society of Hematology’s (ASH) 2020 Award for Leadership in Promoting Diversity. The award honors hematologists who have supported the development of an inclusive hematology workforce, encouraged the career development of underrepresented minority trainees, or made a commitment to inclusiveness through contributions in support of ASH’s mission.
November 2019 - January 2020
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute was named one the most noteworthy companies and non-profits led by women in MA. Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, President and CEO is #7 on the 2019 Top 100 Women-Led Business in Massachusetts by the Commonwealth Institute and the Boston Globe Magazine. The list, created by The Commonwealth Institute – a non-profit that supports female business leaders – examined revenue, operating budget, and other variables, including number of fulltime employees in Massachusetts, workplace and management diversity, and innovative projects.
Dana-Farber was recognized by the Human Rights Campaign as an LGBTQ Health Care Equality Top Performer in its annual Healthcare Equality Index (HEI). The HEI is recognized as the national benchmarking tool for evaluating the policies and practices of health care facilities as related to the equity and inclusion of their LGBTQ patients, visitors, and employees.
The Worksite Wellness Council of Massachusetts named Dana-Farber a Gold Award winner for the third consecutive year in its annual WorkWell Massachusetts Awards program. The program recognizes the state’s employers of all sizes for their exemplary work in worksite health promotion and showcases their employee wellness programs’ performance.
Boston Magazine has named more than 110 Dana-Farber-affiliated physicians and surgeons to its annual "Top Doctors" guide. Drawing from a Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. physician database, the list consists of hundreds of Boston-area physicians from many medical specialties.
Twenty-four Dana-Farber researchers have been named as Highly Cited Researchers, according to the Highly Cited Researchers 2019 list from the Web of Science Group. The following Dana-Farber faculty are on the list: Kenneth C. Anderson, MD; Philippe Armand, MD, PhD; Toni K. Choueiri, MD; Judy E. Garber, MD, MPH; Anita Giobbie-Hurder, MS; Nathanael S. Gray, PhD; William C. Hahn, MD, PhD; Stephen Hodi, MD; Rafael A. Irizarry, PhD; Anthony Letai, MD, PhD; Heng Li, PhD; Shirley Liu, PhD; Donna Neuberg, ScD; Patrick A. Ott, MD, PhD; Kornelia Polyak, MD, PhD; Paul G. Richardson, MD; Jerome Ritz, MD; Chris Sander, PhD; Geoffrey I. Shapiro, MD, PhD; Margaret A. Shipp, MD; Richard M. Stone, MD; Marc Vidal, PhD; Patrick Y. Wen, MD; Eric P. Winer, MD.
Suneet Agarwal, MD, PhD, co-program leader of the Stem Cell Transplant Center at Dana-Farber/ Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center and an assistant professor at Harvard Medical School, has been awarded the 2019 Excellence in Medicine Award by Team Telomere. Team Telomere is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing information and support to those affected by DKC and telomere biology disorders.
The Center for Cancer Genomics (CCG) has awarded grants of $75,000 to Andrew Aguirre, MD, PhD, and Srinivas Viswanathan, MD, PhD, respectively, for genomics-related research. The awards encourage collaborations among CCG investigators and faculty of Dana-Farber, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Boston Children’s Hospital, for projects having broad implications in translational oncology or precision medicine. Aguirre’s focus will be on using a single-cell RNA sequencing method to predict the effectiveness of drugs within hours from the time of a patient’s biopsy. Viswanathan will use his funding to investigate a rare and very aggressive disease known as translocation kidney cancer – a form of non-clear cell kidney cancer that makes up only 1-5% of all kidney cancers often affecting young adult patients.
Judith Agudo, PhD, was recently awarded a Career Catalyst Research Grant from Susan G. Komen®. Agudo will use the $450,000 grant to investigate ways to use the immune system to attack breast cancer cells that have spread to the lungs. The goal is to develop an immunotherapy to target and eliminate breast metastases.
Six Dana-Farber researchers were awarded Career Development Program (CDP) grants from the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS). The grants support promising early-career researchers who focus on understanding and treating blood cancers and relevant premalignant conditions. Dana-Farber CDP grant award winners are: Anat Biran, PhD; Juliette Bouyssou, PhD; Sondra Downey-Kopyscinski, PhD; Annamaria Gulla, MD; Shan Lin, PhD; and Gongwei Wu, PhD.
Myles Brown, MD, is the recipient of the 2019 American Association for Cancer Research Distinguished Lectureship in Breast Cancer Research Award, supported by Aflac Inc. He received the honor at the 2019 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. Brown, the Emil Frei III Professor of Medicine at Dana-Farber and Harvard Medical School, was recognized for his pioneering research involving steroid hormone receptors, which has put a spotlight on the dynamic ability of these proteins to regulate the genome.
Steven DuBois, MD, director of Experimental Therapeutics at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, senior physician in Pediatric Oncology, and associate professor at Harvard Medical School, has received funding from TeamConnor Childhood Cancer Foundation and the Cookies for Kids’ Cancer organization. The funding will support a clinical trial for ALRN-6924, a drug that blocks certain proteins in tumor cells called MDM2 and MDMX which may be important to the growth of some cancers.
Benjamin L. Ebert, MD, PhD, chair of the Department of Medical Oncology and the George P. Canellos, MD, and Jean S. Canellos Professor of Medicine, recently received the Meyenburg Stiftung Cancer Research Prize in Germany for his outstanding research on the pathogenesis and treatment of leukemia. Ebert’s laboratory is known for the identification of genetic mutations in blood and bone marrow cells that predispose older people to developing leukemia and for elucidation of the mechanism of action of thalidomide and its derivatives.
Alexander A. Gimelbrant, PhD, of Chemical Biology, and assistant professor of genetics at Harvard Medical School, is among one of six pairs named to the Pew Charitable Trusts’ 2019 class of Innovation Fund investigators. His lab focuses on the function of cell identity based on allele-specific gene expression.
Shahrzad Giudici, BSN, RN, received the DAISY Award, a quarterly honor given to an extraordinary member of the nursing department.
Nathanael Gray, PhD, the Nancy-Lurie Marks Professor of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School, is one of three researchers awarded the 2019 Paul Marks Prize for Cancer Research by Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK). The award recognizes promising scientists for their accomplishments in the area of cancer research. All recipients must be age 45 or younger at the time of their nomination.
Alejandro Gutierrez, MD, has been recognized with the Milagros para Niños Award for his contributions to improving care for children with cancer, research targeting drug-resistant cancers, and work in Latin America. He received the award at the Milagros para Niños Gala, where the organization celebrated its 10th anniversary.
Daphne A. Haas-Kogan, MD, and Catherine J. Wu, MD, have been elected to the 2019 National Academy of Medicine (NAM) for their outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service. It is considered one of the highest honors in the health and medicine fields. Haas-Kogan is a professor of radiation oncology at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and chair of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Dana-Farber and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Wu is a professor of medicine at HMS and chief of Dana-Farber’s Division of Stem Cell Transplantation and Cellular Therapies.
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s Heng Li, PhD, Assistant Professor of Biostatistics and Computational Biology in the Department of Data Sciences, will receive funding from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) to support open source software projects that are essential to biomedical research. CZI’s Essential Open Source Software for Science program, announced $5 million in funding for these grants to support software maintenance, growth, development, and community engagement for over 40 critical open source tools.
Robert Knoerl, PhD, RN, an instructor in Medicine and nurse scientist in Dana-Farber’s Phyllis F. Cantor Center for Research in Nursing and Patient Care Services, has been awarded the 2020 Oncology Nursing Society’s (ONS) Victoria Mock New Investigator Award. This award recognizes the contributions of new investigators in building a scientific foundation for oncology nursing practice.
Nikhil Munshi, MD, director of Basic and Correlative Science, and associate director of the Jerome Lipper Multiple Myeloma Center, has been named president of the International Myeloma Society (IMS). The appointment, announced during the 17th International Myeloma Workshop in Boston, runs for two consecutive two-year terms.
Erin Parry, MD, PhD, of the Department of Medical Oncology, is one of nine physician scientists selected by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation to be awarded its Physician Scientist Fellowship in its inaugural year. Parry was recognized for her project entitled, “Dissecting the Mechanisms Underlying Response and Resistance to Immune Checkpoint Blockade in Richter’s Transformation.”
Kornelia Polyak, MD, PhD, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute has been named a 2019 Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Election as an AAAS Fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers.
Grant Rowe, MD, PhD, received the David B. Frohnmayer Early Investigator Award from the Fanconi Anemia Research Fund during its Scientific Symposium. Rowe, a physician in Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center and an instructor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, will use the funding to model the hematopoietic clonal evolution in Fanconi anemia (FA).
Clare Sullivan, BSN, MPH, clinical program manager, Patient Education, was named chair-elect of the Cancer Patient Education Network (CPEN). Renee Siegel, MSW, LCSW, program manager, Patient and Family Advisory Councils, was elected member-at-large. CPEN is a group of health care professionals who share experiences and best practices in all aspects of cancer patient education.
Myra Tamba, BSN, RN, formerly of Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center at Milford Regional Medical Center and now on Dana-Farber’s Longwood campus, received the DAISY Award, a quarterly honor given to an extraordinary member of the nursing department.
Deborah Toffler, MSW, LCSW, received the (Up) Beat Cancer Award at the 12th annual gala, presented by the Joe Andruzzi Foundation (JAF). Each year the award is given to an individual whose work best represents JAF’s mission: providing help, hope, and a reason to smile for cancer patients and their families by contributing financial support when it is needed most.
With a $4.3 million grant from the federal Cancer Moonshot program, a team of Dana-Farber investigators has launched an effort to understand why immunotherapy drugs, which are dramatically effective in some cases of advanced head and neck cancer, fail to work in some patients. The multidisciplinary team, led by principal investigator Ravindra Uppaluri, MD, PhD, is using an array of cutting-edge methods to probe immunotherapy resistance in head and neck tumors – aiming to improve the drugs’ rate of response. Uppaluri, director of surgical oncology in the head and neck program, is working with co-investigators Robert Haddad, MD, chief of head and neck oncology at Dana-Farber, and David Barbie, MD, associate director, Belfer Center for Applied Cancer Science.