GRU Cancer Center Clinical Employee of the Month
Laura Logue, RN, MSN, AOCN
“Laura connects with her patients, identifies their needs, and calms their fears while providing excellent nursing care to the patient and their family. She communicates with her patients in a way that is indescribable. You must witness it to understand it’s wonderful impact on her patients.”
Welcome New Staff
- Shannon Albert, RN, Infusion
- Roxan Ara, Research Assistant, Chaperone Biology
- Allegra Blair, Admin Asst, Radiation Oncology
- Judith Chang, Research Assistant, Chaperone Biology
- Monica Cromer, Pharmacist
- Argenail Darrington, Project Coordinator
- Laquana Foster, Registered Nurse, Inpatient Services
- Brittany Frankhouser, Nurse Practitioner
- Briana Golphin, Registered Nurse, Inpatient Services
- Quar-an Green, Administrative Assistant
- Rosanne Gschwendner, Dietitian
- Brian Griffin, Pharmacist
- Michal Kuczma, Research Associate, Cancer Immunology, Inflammation and Tolerance
- Xin Li, Post Doc, Molecular Oncology and Biomarkers
- Kenza Mamouni, Post Doc, Molecular Oncology and Biomarkers
- Selena Menendez, Desk Operations
- Ena Novakovic, Post Doc, Molecular Oncology and Biomarkers
- Amber Otis, Nurse Navigator
- Surendra Rajpurohit, Post Doc, Chaperone Biology
- Nicole Walker, Family Support Coordinator with Patient & Family Centered Care
- Wei Yang, Post Doc, Cancer Immunology, Inflammation and Tolerance
- Jinling Yuan, Research Assistant, Chaperone Biology
The following nurses recently earned their oncology certification of nursing:
The GRU Cancer Center Postdoctoral Graduate Association (PGA) is now on LinkedIn!
The PGA has recently developed a LinkedIn group for the professional trainees at the GRU Cancer Center. This group will be used as a means for the PGA to share useful information, including professional development seminar announcements, social event plans, and postings of potential fellowships and job opportunities. Join Us!
|Reflections on Success: It’s all in how you look at it.
“The successful person and the unsuccessful person are looking at the same world. The difference between them is what they see.”— Dr. Steve Maraboli
There are many sides to a success story. How we gauge success is often a matter perception, a matter of point of view.
Such is the case with the NCI Community Oncology Research Program (NCORP) grant recently awarded to the GRU Cancer Center. It’s a success story that reflects differently on the Cancer Center and the work we do here, depending on how you look at it.
On one hand, this is a welcome tool. It increases our ability to not only address those issues of disparity that we have made a priority here, but grants us the privilege of partnering with like-minded scientists and clinicians across the state.
It’s also a validation. Competition for these grants was fierce and to receive one means more than just an acknowledgment of good intentions. It’s sends the message that the work we are doing here, both in terms of minority and underserved populations and generally, meets that standard of excellence we all strive for. We work hard, people notice and we are rewarded. We are rewarded with grants, such as NCORP, but also with the knowledge that the work we do here can, and will, make a difference.
That’s a win, no matter what your perspective.
Have you Heard…?
- GRU Cancer Center-led Statewide Consortium Awarded NCI Grant to Lead Only NCORP Minority/Underserved Community Site in Georgia
The GRU Cancer Center has been awarded a five-year grant from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to lead an NCI Community Oncology Research Program (NCORP) Minority/Underserved Community Site. Working in partnership with the Morehouse School of Medicine (Atlanta), University Cancer and Blood Center (Athens) and the Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health at Georgia Southern University (Statesboro), GRU Cancer Center will use the grant to increase awareness of and participation in NCI-sponsored clinical trials and cancer care delivery research throughout Georgia, particularly among minority and underserved populations. >> Continue reading
- The STARs Are Out
Each summer, GRU hosts its Student Training and Research – STAR – Program, designed to introduce undergraduate students to the world of biomedical research. The nine-week program provides mentored, hands-on experience to jumpstart the development of foundational skills for a future career in the biomedical sciences. >> Continue reading
- NIH Annual Progress Reports and Individual Development Plans
On August 4, 2014, NIH released a revised notice on the use of individual development plans for graduate students and postdoctoral researchers. “NIH annual progress reports received on/after October 1, 2014 must include a section to describe how individual development plans (IDPs) are used to identify and promote the career goals of graduate students and postdoctoral researchers associated with the award. >> Continue reading
- GRU Cancer Center Postdoctoral Graduate Association
We are pleased to announce that the Postdoctoral Graduate Association (PGA) for research trainees at the GRU Cancer Center is up and rolling! The purpose of the PGA is to improve career development resources for trainees and to promote a network of collaboration among trainees at GRU and the Cancer Center. Peer mentorship has been shown to contribute to the career success and satisfaction of scientists across disciplines (Johnson et al, Acad Med. 2011 86:1577-82). >> Continue reading
- Two New Series sponsored by the GRU Cancer Center Education Program
In response to feedback from the recently formed GRU Cancer Center Postdoctoral-Graduate Association (PGA), the GRU Cancer Center Education Program will begin a Professional Skills Development series this Fall. This series reflects the Cancer Center’s commitment to the career goals and advancement of all cancer research trainees at GRU. Bi-monthly interactive and engaging Professional Skills Development sessions will be organized during the coming year to provide the opportunity for trainees at all levels to improve their professional skills. The GRU Cancer Center Education Program is also launching an exciting new series called Pathways to Success. This series is intended to consist of interactive discussions – not seminars – that allow successful scientists from diverse backgrounds and various careers to share with Cancer Center trainees how they have successfully navigated key decision-making periods. >> Continue reading
- New Clinical Trial Strategy for Cancer Vaccines
A report recently published in Clinical Cancer Research by Dr. Samir Khleif along with colleagues from the University of Virginia and the National Cancer Institute addresses the FDA’s recognition of a needed paradigm shift in the approach to cancer vaccine development. Since the mechanism of action of cancer vaccines is distinct from that for cytotoxic agents, the applicability of the traditional phase I dose escalation design to identify a maximum tolerated dose or biologically active dose has been questioned. >> Continue reading
- Making No Escape for Tumors
GRU Cancer Center researchers have identified a previously overlooked mechanism that gives tumors an advantage in evading chemoimmunotherapy – and propose how to prevent this evasion to achieve a lasting curative effect. A problem in treating cancer is that many anti-cancer drugs, including cyclophosphamide (CTX), work only initially, followed by tumor relapse. Although CTX is used to stimulate the immune system’s action against tumors, it can also activate cells that suppress immune responses. Recently published in Cancer Research, a team led by Dr. Gang Zhou, along with Cancer Center colleagues Drs. Lei Huang, Kebin Liu, Andrew Mellor, and David Munn, discovered a mechanism responsible for this suppression. >> Continue reading
- Improving Anticancer Immune Strategies
Researchers at the GRU Cancer Center of Georgia Regents University in Augusta, Georgia have identified a way to boost the immune system’s efficacy against cancer. Often immune therapies are stunted due to an increase in immune cells called regulatory T cells (Tregs), which suppress immune responses. Being able to inhibit Tregs without affecting other immune cells has been an ongoing challenge to the development of anticancer immunotherapies. Published in Cancer Immunology Research, a study led by Dr. Samir Khleif, GRU Cancer Center Director, presents a promising new approach. >> Continue reading
- Ali Arbab, MD, PhD, brings to the GRU Cancer Center the remaining $94K of his NCI/NIH R01 grant, “In vivo detection of involvement of endogenous BM progenitor cells in glioma” that was awarded during his time at the Henry Ford Health System.Description: The proposed investigations will shed new lights on the mechanisms of tumor neovascularization following anti-angiogenic/anti-vasculogenic treatments and apply both optical and MR imaging techniques to track changes in the tumor. Specifically, researchers will: 1) create a chimeric animal model by replacing bone marrow cells with GFP+ bone marrow, 2) use established imaging modalities and techniques to determine, in vivo, the changes in the tumors during anti-angiogenic/anti-vasculogenic treatments, 3) track the migration of endogenous GFP+ bone marrow progenitor cells to the sites of tumor, using optical imaging, 4) use exogenous stem cells to determine the role of stem cells during anti-angiogenic/anti-vasculogenic treatments by MRI, and 5) use both optical imaging and cellular MRI to track how progenitor cells become involved in tumor angiogenesis/vasculogenesis during anti-angiogenic/anti-vasculogenic treatments.
- Daron Ferris, MD, received a $40.7K subcontract from a Georgia Southern University NCI/NIH R01 for “Implementation evaluation of a cervical cancer screening initiative in Cusco, Peru.” Description: This project aims to positively impact the gynecological health of Quechua women in the Andean region of Peru. Its innovative design proposes Rapid Assessment Procedures (RAP) to evaluate a large cervical cancer screening initiative and then formulate and implement social media-based intervention to increase participation in screenings.
New Clinical Trials
- Samir Khleif, MD: “Phase 1-2 Study Evaluating High Dose ADXS11-001 (1 x 1010 CFU) Treatment in Women with HPV+ Carcinoma of the Cervix” (Advaxis, Inc.)
- Samir Khleif, MD: “A Phase I/II Study of the Concomitant Administration of Indoximod plus Ipilimumab for Adult Patients with Metastatic Melanoma” (NewLink Genetics, Corp.)
- Asha Nayak, MD: “A Phase 1/2 Study of Indoximod in Combination with Gemcitabine and Nab-Paclitaxel in Patients with Metastatic Adenocarcinoma of the Pancreas”(NewLink Genetics, Corp.)
- Zhonglin Hao, MD: “A Phase 1b, Open-Label, Dose Escalation Trial Investigating Different Doses and Schedules of SYM004 in Combination with Platinum-Doublets in Subjects with Stage IV Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer”(EMD Serono, Inc.)
- Li M, Bolduc AR, Hoda MN, Gamble DN, Dolisca SB, Bolduc AK, Hoang K, Ashley C, McCall D, Rojiani AM, Maria BL, Rixe O, MacDonald TJ, Heeger PS, Mellor AL, Munn DH, Johnson TS. The indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase pathway controls complement-dependent enhancement of chemo-radiation therapy against murine glioblastoma. J Immunother Cancer. 2014 Jul 7;2:21. eCollection 2014.
- Blanco VM, Chu Z, Vallabhapurapu SD, Sulaiman MK, Kendler A, Rixe O, Warnick RE, Franco RS, Qi X. Phosphatidylserine-selective targeting and anticancer effects of SapC-DOPS nanovesicles on brain tumors. Oncotarget. 2014 Jul 14. [Epub ahead of print]
- Howell RJ, Solowski NL, Belafsky PC, Courey MC, Merati AL, Rosen CA, Weinberger PM, Postma GN. Microdebrider complications in laryngologic and airway surgery. Laryngoscope. 2014 Jul 11. [Epub ahead of print]
- Pan ZQ, Xie D, Choudhary V, Seremwe M, Tsai YY, Olala L, Chen X, Bollag WB. The effect of pioglitazone on aldosterone and cortisol production in HAC15 human adrenocortical carcinoma cells. Mol Cell Endocrinol. 2014 Jul 16. pii: S0303-7207(14)00211-1. [Epub ahead of print]
- Rahma OE, Gammoh E, Simon R, Khleif SN. Is the “3+3” dose escalation phase 1 clinical trial design suitable for therapeutic cancer vaccine development? A recommendation for alternative design. Clin Cancer Res. 2014 Jul 18. pii: clincanres.2671.2013. [Epub ahead of print]
- Kindler JM, Ross HL, Laing EM, Modlesky CM, Pollock NK, Baile CA, Lewis RD. Load-Specific Physical Activity Scores are Related to Tibia Bone Architecture. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2014 Jul 14. [Epub ahead of print]
- Tawfik A, Markand S, Al-Shabrawey M, Mayo JN, Reynolds J, Bearden SE, Ganapathy V, Smith SB. Alterations of Retinal Vasculature in Cystathionine-β-Synthase Heterozygous Mice, a Model of Mild to Moderate Hyperhomocysteinemia. Am J Pathol. 2014 Jul 10. pii: S0002-9440(14)00320-4. [Epub ahead of print]
- Rao SS. Current and Emerging Treatment Options for Fecal Incontinence. J Clin Gastroenterol. 2014 Jul 10. [Epub ahead of print]
- Lee JH, Choi SS, Kim HW, Xiong WC, Min CK, Lee SJ. Neogenin as a receptor for early cell fate determination in preimplantation mouse embryos. PLoS One. 2014 Jul 11;9(7):e101989. eCollection 2014.
- Liu Z, Zhang J, Gao Y, Pei L, Zhou J, Gu L, Zhang LH, Zhu BD, Hattori N, Ji JF, Yuasa Y, Kim WH, Ushijima T, Shi H, Deng D. Large-scale characterization of DNA methylation changes in human gastric carcinomas with and without metastasis. Clin Cancer Res. 2014 Jul 9. pii: clincanres.3380.2013. [Epub ahead of print]
- Maria BL. Mitochondrial Disease: Current Understanding and Future Directions. J Child Neurol. 2014 Jul 9. pii: 0883073814540524. [Epub ahead of print] No abstract available.
- Refaey ME, Zhong Q, Ding KH, Shi XM, Xu J, Bollag WB, Hill WD, Chutkan N, Robbins R, Nadeau H, Johnson M, Hamrick MW, Isales CM. Impact of dietary aromatic amino acids on osteoclastic activity. Calcif Tissue Int. 2014 Aug;95(2):174-82. Epub 2014 Jul 8.
- Mansour J, Fields B, Macomson S, Rixe O. Significant anti-tumor effect of bevacizumab in treatment of pineal gland glioblastoma multiforme. Target Oncol. 2014 Jul 8. [Epub ahead of print]
- Mei L, Nave KA. Neuregulin-ERBB Signaling in the Nervous System and Neuropsychiatric Diseases. Neuron. 2014 Jul 2;83(1):27-49. Review.
- Pherson M, Yon JR, Wilhelm S, Toscano MP, Kruse EJ. Mantle cell lymphoma metastasis to the gallbladder. Am Surg. 2014 Jul;80(7):198-9. No abstract available.
- Lee YY, Gangireddy V, Khurana S, Rao SS. Are We Ready for Combination Therapy in Moderate-to-Severe Ulcerative Colitis? Gastroenterology. 2014 Aug;147(2):544.
- Bollag WB. Regulation of aldosterone synthesis and secretion. Compr Physiol. 2014 Jul 1;4(3):1017-55.
- Son CO, Mott FE. Pemetrexed and communicating hydrocephalus. Ochsner J. 2014 Summer;14(2):292-4.
- Zhi W, Ferris D, Sharma A, Purohit S, Santos C, He M, Ghamande S, She JX. Twelve serum proteins progressively increase with disease stage in squamous cell cervical cancer patients. Int J Gynecol Cancer. 2014 Jul;24(6):1085-92.
- Geem D, Medina-Contreras O, McBride M, Newberry RD, Koni PA, Denning TL. Specific Microbiota-Induced Intestinal Th17 Differentiation Requires MHC Class II but Not GALT and Mesenteric Lymph Nodes. J Immunol. 2014 Jul 1;193(1):431-8.
- Pan G, Cao J, Yang N, Ding K, Fan C, Xiong WC, Hamrick M, Isales CM, Shi XM. Role of Glucocorticoid-induced Leucine Zipper (GILZ) in Bone Acquisition. J Biol Chem. 2014 Jul 11;289(28):19373-19382.
- Olala LO, Shapiro BA, Merchen TC, Wynn JJ, Bollag WB. Protein kinase C and Src family kinases mediate angiotensin II-induced protein kinase D activation and acute aldosterone production. Mol Cell Endocrinol. 2014 Jul 5;392(1-2):173-81.
- Pye C, Elsherbiny NM, Ibrahim AS, Liou GI, Chadli A, Al-Shabrawey M, Elmarakby AA. Adenosine kinase inhibition protects the kidney against streptozotocin-induced diabetes through anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant mechanisms. Pharmacol Res. 2014 Jul;85:45-54.
- Ranganathan P, Jayakumar C, Mohamed R, Weintraub NL, Ramesh G. Semaphorin 3A inactivation suppresses ischemia-reperfusion-induced inflammation and acute kidney injury. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2014 Jul 15;307(2):F183-94.
- Terry AV Jr, Callahan PM, Beck WD, Vandenhuerk L, Sinha S, Bouchard K, Schade R, Waller JL. Repeated exposures to diisopropylfluorophosphate result in impairments of sustained attention and persistent alterations of inhibitory response control in rats. Neurotoxicol Teratol. 2014 Jul-Aug;44:18-29.
- Ding ZC, Lu X, Yu M, Lemos H, Huang L, Chandler P, Liu K, Walters M, Krasinski A, Mack M, Blazar BR, Mellor AL, Munn DH, Zhou G. Immunosuppressive Myeloid Cells Induced by Chemotherapy Attenuate Antitumor CD4+ T-Cell Responses through the PD-1-PD-L1 Axis. Cancer Res. 2014 Jul 1;74(13):3441-53.
- Yamaguchi M, Zhu S, Zhang S, Wu D, Moore TM, Snyder JP, Shoji M. Curcumin analogue UBS109 prevents bone loss in breast cancer bone metastasis mouse model: involvement in osteoblastogenesis and osteoclastogenesis. Cell Tissue Res. 2014 Jul;357(1):245-52.
- Olala LO, Choudhary V, Johnson MH, Bollag WB. Angiotensin II-Induced Protein Kinase D Activates the ATF/CREB Family of Transcription Factors and Promotes StAR mRNA Expression. Endocrinology. 2014 Jul;155(7):2524-33.
- Duke WS, White JR, Waller JL, Terris DJ. Endoscopic Thyroidectomy is Safe in Patients with a High Body Mass Index. Thyroid. 2014 Jul;24(7):1146-50.
- Reid ME, El Beshlawy A, Inati A, Kutlar A, Abboud MR, Haynes J Jr, Ward R, Sharon B, Taher AT, Smith W, Manwani D, Ghalie RG. A double-blind, placebo-controlled phase II study of the efficacy and safety of 2,2-dimethylbutyrate (HQK-1001), an oral fetal globin inducer, in sickle cell disease. Am J Hematol. 2014 Jul;89(7):709-13.
- Jin Y, Sharma A, Bai S, Davis C, Liu H, Hopkins D, Barriga K, Rewers M, She JX. Risk of type 1 diabetes progression in islet autoantibody-positive children can be further stratified using expression patterns of multiple genes implicated in peripheral blood lymphocyte activation and function. Diabetes. 2014 Jul;63(7):2506-15.
- Penwell-Waines L, Wilson CK, Macapagal KR, Valvano AK, Waller JL, West LM, Stepleman LM. Student perspectives on sexual health: implications for interprofessional education. J Interprof Care. 2014 Jul;28(4):317-22.
- Metz R, Smith C, DuHadaway JB, Chandler P, Baban B, Merlo LM, Pigott E, Keough MP, Rust S, Mellor AL, Mandik-Nayak L, Muller AJ, Prendergast GC. IDO2 is critical for IDO1-mediated T-cell regulation and exerts a non-redundant function in inflammation. Int Immunol. 2014 Jul;26(7):357-67.
- Lee HS, Burkhardt BR, McLeod W, Smith S, Eberhard C, Lynch K, Hadley D, Rewers M, Simell O, She JX, Hagopian B, Lernmark A, Akolkar B, Ziegler AG, Krischer JP; TEDDY study group. Biomarker discovery study design for type 1 diabetes in The Environmental Determinants of Diabetes in the Young (TEDDY) study. Diabetes Metab Res Rev. 2014 Jul;30(5):424-34.
- Kazi AA, Flowers WJ, Barrett JM, O’Rourke AK, Postma GN, Weinberger PM. Ethical issues in laryngology: Tracheal stenting as palliative care. Laryngoscope. 2014 Jul;124(7):1663-7.
- Sharma L, Wu J, Patel V, Sitapara R, Rao NV, Kennedy TP, Mantell LL. Partially-desulfated heparin improves survival in Pseudomonas pneumonia by enhancing bacterial clearance and ameliorating lung injury. J Immunotoxicol. 2014 Jul;11(3):260-7.