Cancer Institute A national cancer institute
designated cancer center

October 2011 Cancer Institute Bulletin


The Cancer Institute is midway through a strategic planning process.  I want to thank all the Cancer Institute members who participated in our sessions aimed at gathering inputs for the plan.  Your suggestions were thoughtful and will be helpful in determining long run goals and for making other changes in the near-term.  The output of the plan will help determine needs for future research programs and provide the outlines of a fundraising plan.

Keep in mind that the Letter of Intent for NCI’s “Provocative Questions” RFA is due on October 14.

Separate from the RFA, and related to our strategic planning, we will be sending out a short survey to gather your opinion on which of the NCI’s 24 “Provocative Questions” are of greatest scientific importance and which might the Cancer Institute be able to approach in a programmatic manner.  I hope you can take a few minutes to fill out the brief questionnaire.



Foundations accepting proposals on an ongoing basis (no specific deadlines):
Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure
Dana Foundation
James S. McDonnell Foundation Collaborative Activity Award
Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation Biomarker Trials and Technology Award
National Brain Tumor Society Innovation Grants
Solving Kids Cancer Therapeutic Development Initiative (TDI) Project Grant Awards

Foundations with October deadlines:
American Cancer Society (Oct. 15)
American Lung Association (Oct. 20)
California Breast Cancer Research Program (Oct. 25)

Foundations with November deadlines:
Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Specialized Center of Research (Nov.1)
Melanoma Research Foundation (Nov. 1)
California Breast Cancer Research Program Conference Award (Nov. 8)


The new Stanford Brain Tumor Center was inaugurated on September 21.  Creating the Center did not require bricks and mortar, but rather reflects a collaborative organizational structure designed to streamline how patients receive care.  For example, an interdisciplinary brain tumor board – including physicians and nurses from neuropathology, imaging, neurosurgery and neuro-oncology – meets weekly to review and discuss patient treatment plans. The Center also employs nurses with certification in neurological care as well as social workers experienced in the needs of tumor patients and their families, including resources in neuropsychology, rehabilitation and counseling. 

“The goal,” said Center Director Griff Harsh, MD, “is to give patients the highest quality of care, delivered with a matching level of efficiency.”

Visit the Center’s home page at:


Samuel Cheshier, MD PHD, assistant professor of neurosurgery was awarded a St. Baldricks Foundation Childhood Cancer Research Grant for his proposal, “Identification of Lineage Hierarchy in Human Pediatric Brain Tumors.”



The Cancer Institute is pleased to announce the 2011 DCRA recipients. Congratulations, and thanks to all who applied.

 Interactive Projects

 James M Ford, MD
Associate Professor, Oncology
An integrated approach to gastric cancer pathogenesis and therapy
Co-PI: Hanlee Ji, MD, Calvin Kuo, MD, PhD, Manual Ameiva, MD, PhD

 Daria Mochly-Rosen, PhD
Professor, Chemical & Systems Biology
Novel Aldehyde Dehydrogenase Regulators as Potential Anti-chemoresistance Drugs for Head and Neck Cancer
Co-PI: John Sunwoo, Yanru Chen-Tsai, Che-Hong Chen, Jeewon Kim

 Population Science Research

Allison Kurian, MD, MSc  
Assistant Professor, Oncology, Health Research & Policy (Epidemiology)
Can Emerging Genetic Tests Improve Breast Cancer Risk Assessment?
Co-PI: Alice Whittemore, PhD, James Ford, MD, Gail Gong, PhD

Ingrid Oakley-Girvan, PhD
David H. Rehkopf, ScD
Res. Scientist II
Acting Assist. Professor, Research (CPIC)
Do telomere lengths act as predictors of prostate cancer survival?
Co-PI: Alice Whittemore, PhD

Manali Patel, MD,PhD
Post-doctoral fellow, Hematology-Oncology
How do social factors explain outcomes in non-small cell lung cancer among Hispanic/Latino patients in California?
Co-PI: Heather Wakelee, Ellen Chang, Scarlett Gomez

Sharon Pitteri, PhD  
Assistant Professor, Radiology
Identification of Circulating Proteins for Breast Cancer Early Detection in Pre-Diagnostic Plasma Samples
Co-PI: Esther John, PhD

Wei Wang, PhD  
Research Scientist II, CPIC / Research
A whole genome sequencing study of breast cancer
Co-PI: E. John, M. Snyder, A. Whittemore, M. Clark, H.Im

Translational Research

 Laura Attardi, PhD 
Associate Professor, Oncology
Evaluating the Desmosomal Protein Perp as a Prognostic Indicator for Breast Cancer
Co-PI: Fred Dirbas, MD

Gregory Behbehani, MD,PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow, Hematology and Oncology
Single Cell Mass Cytometry to Model Hematopoietic Differentiation of Myelodysplastic Syndrome
Co-PI: Garry Nolan, PhD, Peter Greenberg, MD

Heike Daldrup-Link, MD  
Associate Professor, Radiology
Tumor MR Imaging with the new Superparamagnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticle GEH121333: Development for the Clinic
Co-PI: Brian Rutt, Srabani Bhaumik

Basem Goueli, MD,PhD
Third-Year Fellow, Hematology and Oncology
The Role of the Rab GTPase-Activating-Protein, TBC1D16, in Melanomagenesis
Co-PI: Suzanne Pfeffer, PhD, Sunil Reddy, MD, Marianne Powell,PhD

Aya Kamaya, MD
Chang, MD
Assistant Professor, Radiation
Perfusion CT in evaluation of colorectal carcinoma treated with chemoradiation
Co-PI: Dominik Flieshmann, MD, Grace Tye, MD

Susan Knox, MD,PhD
Associate Professor, Radiation Oncology
A Pilot Study of Ipilimumab in Subjects with Stage IV Melanoma Receiving Palliative Radiation Therapy
Co-PI: Susan Swetter, MD, Joseph Mollick, MD, Sunil Reddy, MD 

John Leppert, MD
Assistant Professor, Urology
Nanofluidic proteomic immunoassays in renal cell carcinoma diagnosis and treatment response
Co-PI: Dean Felsher, MD PhD, James Brooks, MD

Oxana Palesh, PhD, MPH
Acting Assistant Professor, Psychiatry
Early behavioral intervention in BMT recipients with sleep disturbance:  Assessing its impact on quality of life, fatigue and cognitive function
Co-PI: Laura Johnson, MD, Shelli Kesler, PhD 

Julien Sage, PhD 
Assistant Professor, Pediatrics / Cancer Biology
Mechanisms of hepatocellular carcinoma development upon loss of RB pathway function
Co-PI: None 

Daya Upadhyay, MD
Assistant Professor, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine
Exhaled Breath microRNAs - Novel Noninvasive Approach for Lung Cancer Diagnosis
Co-PI: Heather Wakelee, MD 



Cancer Education Seminar Series – “Adjuvant Therapy of Early Breast Cancer": Brian Leyland-Jones, M.D., Professor of Medicine,  Emory Cancer Center, Atlanta, Georgia
October 4, 2011 (Tues.) | 8:00-9:00 am |
Cancer Center, (CC 2103-2104), 875 Blake Wilbur Drive

Stanford Center for Biomedical Ethics presents “Hope, Emotions and the Provision of Palliative Care”: Dr. Chris Feudtner, Associate Professor, Pediatric, CHOP
October 5, 2011 (Wed.) | 5:30 – 6:30 pm |
LPCH Auditorium, 1st Floor

2011 MIPS/Philips Molecular Imaging Seminar Series – “The quantitative imaging of tumor hypoxia": John Humm, PhD, Attending Physician, Sloan Kettering
October 10, 2011 (Mon.) | 4:30 – 5:30 pm |
Clark Auditorium, Bio-X

Cancer Education Seminar Series – “Management of the Axilla in Early Breast Cancer”, Stefanie Jeffrey, MD, Associate Professor of Surgery, Stanford University Medical Center
October 11, 2011 (Tues.) | 8:00-9:00 am |
Cancer Center, CC 2103-2104), 875 Blake Wilbur Drive

Center for Cancer Systems Biology Seminar - "Whole Genome Sequencing and Analysis of Cancer Genomes": Elaine Mardis, Associate Professor, The Genome Institute, Washington University
October 14, 2011 (Friday) | 11:00 – 12:00 noon |
LKSC, Room 120

2011 MIPS/Philips Molecular Imaging Seminar Series - "Applications of Proteomics to Characterizing Cancer Cell State”:  Parag Mallick, PhD, Assistant Professor (Research), Radiology - Diagnostic Radiology
October 17, 2011 (Mon.) | 4:30 – 5:30 pm |
Clark Auditorium, Bio-X

Cancer Education Seminar Series – “Controversies in Radiation Therapy of Early Breast Cancer": Kathleen Horst, MD, Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology, Stanford University Medical Center 
October 18, 2011 (Tues.) | 8:00-9:00 am |  
Cancer Center, CC 2103-2104), 875 Blake Wilbur Drive

 Saul A. Rosenberg Distinguished Lecture -
“Targeted Therapeutics for Renal Cell Cancer”: Amato Giaccia, Professor of Radiation Biology, Stanford University School of Medicine
October 18, 2011 (Tues.) | 11:00-12:00 pm |
Cancer Prevention Institute of California
2201 Walnut Avenue, Suite 300
Fremont, CA 94538

CCNE Nano-Bio Seminar Series – “Targeting tumors with tumor-penetrating peptides”:  Erkki Ruoslahit, MD, PHD, Distinguished Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, UC Santa Barbara
October 18, 2011 (Tues.) | 4:30 – 6:00 pm |
Clark Auditorium, Clark Center Building

Cancer Biology Seminar Series – “Angiomotin-a novel mediator of Merlin’s tumor suppressive functions”: Joseph Kissil, PhD, Molecular and Cellular Oncogenesis Program, The Winstar Institute
October 20, 2011 (Thur.) | 12:00-1:00 pm |
Munzer Auditorium, Beckman Center

Cancer Education Seminar Series – “Breast Cancer Risk Assessment and Prevent”: Allison Kurian, M.D., Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Oncology, Stanford University Medical Center 
October 25, 2011 (Tues.) | 8:00-9:00 am |  
Cancer Center, CC 2103-2104), 875 Blake Wilbur Drive
Program in Radiation Biology – Soltys/Xing
October 25, 2011 (Tues.) | 4:00 – 5:00 pm |
CCSR-N, Room 4105

Frontiers in Interdisciplinary Biosciences Seminar - “Epigenetic Variation as a Driving Force for Development and Cancer”: Rafael Irizarry, John Hopkins University
October 27, 2011 (Thurs.) | 3:15 – 4:15 pm |
Clark Center Auditorium


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