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What's New in CPRTP? (Winter/Spring 2012)

Congratulations to CPRTP Director, Dr. Shine Chang

We are pleased to announce the induction of our Director of the Cancer Prevention Research Training Program, Dr. Shine Chang into the University of Texas Academy of Health Science Education, also known as the "hall of fame for health science educators." Dr. Chang said, "I became an epidemiologist to improve the health of groups of people, but I realized that I could reach more people, and have a more profound impact on health, by helping others reach their maximum potential through education. I’m passionate about studying how we educate and mentor the next generation of scientists and health care providers, and my goal is establishing MD Anderson as the model for cancer care and research training."

“The requirements for membership in the Academy are strict, and selection is a real privilege,” says Provost and Executive Vice President Raymond DuBois, MD, PhD “This is an exceptional year for MD Anderson. Only 12 new members are being inducted from the six health care institutions, and five of those are our faculty.”  The induction ceremony is part of the 8th annual Innovations in Health Science Education Conference, which took place in Austin on Thursday, Feb. 23, and Friday, Feb. 24, 2012.

The 2012 UTAHSE Inductees are Gregory Botz, MD, Professor, Critical Care; Shine Chang, PhD, Professor, Epidemiology; Steven Curley, MD, Professor, Surgical Oncology; Larry Driver, MD, Chair Ad Interim, Pain Medicine; and Ed Jackson, PhD, Professor, Imaging Physics.  

Congratulations to Dr. Chang and the other inductees! We are so proud of you!!!

Trainee Accolades

The MD Anderson Alumni and Faculty Association announced the recipients of the Trainee Excellence Award for presentations given during medical or scientific meetings of professional societies between the time periods of August 1, 2011 – February 29, 2012.  One of the 5 recipients, Dianren Xu, PhD, was an R25T Postdoctoral fellow from 9/2008 to 9/2010. Dr. Xu is currently a Postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Cancer Biology and mentored by Dr. Raymond N. DuBois.  The title of his abstract was “Prostaglandin E2 Promotes Intestinal Tumor Growth via DNA Methylation.” Additional awardees were Mona Lisa Alattar, MD, Clinical Fellow, Leukemia, Katherine O. Castle, MD, Resident, Radiation Oncology and Zachary C. Hartman, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow, Clinical Cancer Prevention.

Former CPRTP R25T Postdoctoral fellow, Dr. Michelle A. T. Hildebrandt and former R25E GRA fellow, Dr. Anthony M. D'Amelio were selected to receive the Highly Rated Poster Presentation Award by the 2012 American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Program Committee. This meritorious award is only given to abstracts scoring in the top 2.5% of all those submitted. Dr. Hildebrandt’s poster “Mitochondrial DNA copy number is inversely associated with overall survival in non-small cell lung cancer” will be in Poster Section 23 on Tuesday April 3, 2012 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM (abstract # 4509).  Dr. D’Amelio’s poster “Elucidating significant genetic associations between genes and lung cancer“ will be presented at the same date and time in Poster Section 40 (abstract LB-326). 

We are pleased to announce that Dr. Yessenia Castro, a former R25T postdoctoral fellow in the department of Health Disparities Research, accepted a tenure track Assistant Professor position in the School of Social Work at the University of Texas, Austin. We wish Dr. Castro tremendous success and best wishes in Austin!

Dr. Allison Burton, R25T Postdoctoral Fellow of Behavioral Science, was selected for the Trainee of the Quarter recognition award for September 2011 through November 2011 cycle. In addition to a plaque, she was recognized on the MD Anderson intranet, the Trainee Recognition Programs web site and Ten Seconds with TAA.

CPRTP Alumni, Dr. Jessica Clague, was promoted to Assistant Research Professor in the Division of Clinical Cancer Genetics at the City of Hope, in Duarte, California. Dr. Clague was an R25T Predoctoral Fellow in the department of Epidemiology from August 2007 to May of 2010. 

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2011 Outstanding Trainee & Leading Mentor in Cancer Prevention Awards

This ceremony took place as a part of a special Cancer Prevention Grand Rounds on Friday, January 6, 2012 and featured keynote speaker Dr. Richard Tapia of Rice University. All winners listed below were presented with their awards and gave presentations describing their research. 

2011 Predoctoral Outstanding Trainee in Cancer Prevention: Maria Ching-yi Chang, Behavioral Science (Mentors:  Drs. Karen Basen-Engquist and Joya Chandra)

Predoctoral Honorable Mentions:  Shaoyi Huang, Clinical Cancer Prevention (Mentor: Dr. Xiangwei Wu); Amanda Mathew, Behavioral Science (Mentors: Drs. Jan Blalock and Jason Robinson); Xiang Shu, Epidemiology (Mentor:  Dr. Xifeng Wu); and Selina Vattahil, Epidemiology (Mentor: Dr. Paul Scheet)

2011 Postdoctoral Outstanding Trainee in Cancer Prevention: Dr. Allison Burton, Behavioral Science (Mentors:  Drs. Susan Peterson and Ellen Gritz)

Predoctoral Honorable Mentions:  Dr. Jeffrey Englemann, Behavioral Science (Mentors: Drs. Jason Robinson and Francesco Versace); Dr. Shelly Hovick, Behavioral Science (Mentors: Drs. Susan Peterson, Therese Bevers, Jennifer Irvin-Vidrine, and Lovell Jones); Dr. Summer Nipomnick, Behavioral Science (Mentor: Dr. Michelle Fingeret).

2011 Leading Mentors in Cancer Prevention (tie):  Dr. Susan Peterson, Associate Professor, Behavioral Science and Dr. Ernest Hawk, Vice President for Cancer Prevention

Mentor Honorable Mentions:  Dr. Jan Blalock, Associate Professor, Behavioral Science; Dr. Lorenzo Cohen, Professor, General Oncology; Dr. Jian Gu, Assistant Professor, Epidemiology; Dr. Paul Scheet, Assistant Professor, Epidemiology; and Dr. Eileen Shinn, Assistant Professor, Behavioral Science

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CPRTP Staff Members Selected for 2011 Recognition Awards

We are very proud to announce that two of our staff members were selected for awards as part of the 2011 Division of Cancer Prevention and Population Sciences Employee Recognition & Awards Program and Employee Caring Award. Kava Lewis was awarded for “Excellence in Research Support” and Debbie Vasquez was awarded an "Employee Caring Award".

Meet our new CPRTP Secretary, Erica Garza! 

Erica Garza joined the Cancer Prevention Research Training Program staff in October of 2011.  She transferred from the Department of Symptom Research.. Erica is married and has 3 beautiful children.  She lives in Pasadena, Texas where she also has a small jewelry and accessory business.  Her hobbies include shopping, baking, decorating cakes and spending time with my family. Erica is a delightful addition to our CPRTP staff!

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