Newsmakers - May 2014

Amatruda named as holder of Nearburg Family Professorship

Dr. James Amatruda, Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Internal Medicine, and Molecular Biology, has been named holder of the Nearburg Family Professorship in Pediatric Oncology Research. His laboratory uses a combination of human genomics and zebrafish genetic models to develop better understanding of and new treatment options for children's cancers, including Ewing Sarcoma, a childhood bone cancer. A graduate of Harvard College and a UT Southwestern faculty member since 2005, Dr. Amatruda earned both medical and doctoral degrees from Washington University School of Medicine (1993) before residency and fellowship training at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and Children’s Hospital of Boston.

Minna receives grant to support ongoing lung cancer research

Dr. John Minna, Director of Nancy B. and Jake L. Hamon Center for Therapeutic Oncology Research, has been awarded an unsolicited $25,000 grant from Uniting Against Lung Cancer for his groundbreaking lung cancer research. The group presented Dr. Minna the award in New York in November 2013, with NBC News anchorman Brian Williams making the presentation. “It was based on the previous research we had done,” Dr. Minna said. “We didn’t apply for this, so it was quite an honor.” Dr. Minna, who holds the Sarah M. and Charles E. Seay Distinguished Chair in Cancer Research, and the Max L. Thomas Distinguished Chair in Molecular Pulmonary Oncology, and colleague Dr. Adi Gazdar are known for decades of work developing lung cancer cell lines that researchers worldwide use to study lung cancer and test possible treatments.