December 2018
Table of Contents

Funding Opportunities

Physical Sciences-Oncology Network (PS-ON): Physical Sciences-Oncology Projects (PS-OP) (U01 Clinical Trial Optional)


Cancer Tissue Engineering Collaborative: Enabling Biomimetic Tissue-Engineered Technologies for Cancer Research (R01 Clinical Trial Optional)


Improving Outcomes in Cancer Treatment-Related Cardiotoxicity (R21 Clinical Trial Optional)



View a full list of current funding opportunities.

Highlighted positions related to cancer for which VCU is currently hiring. View the full list.



Program Co-Leader, Cancer Molecular Genetics (F36090)


Surgical Oncology Division Chair (F59750)

Shared Resource Spotlight
Microscopy Core

The Microscopy Core Laboratory is acquiring a Zeiss LSM 880, representing the third generation of the Zeiss LSM 700 product line. The LSM 880 will be equipped with an AiryScan detector, which can be used to image fluorescence distributions at the confocal pinhole; whereas, the older systems provided only integrated single value measurements. This arrangement leads to increase of spatial resolution by a factor of 170 percent. This super-resolution modality nevertheless remains fully compatible with existing confocal sample preparation protocols. The LSM 880 system will meet increasing demand for confocal imaging, while offering significantly enhanced capabilities in all typical applications and a seamless transition for users of the existing LSM 700 and LSM 710 systems.


For more information, contact facility director Tytus Bernas, Ph.D., at 828.0949 or or visit the Massey website.

Leaders' Update Update 
A message from Director Gordon Ginder

Dear colleagues,

As we approach the end of the calendar year, I am proud to share some of the outstanding accomplishments made at Massey Cancer Center in 2018.

This message continues with highlights from the last year, including cancer research funding, philanthropic support, research publications, new members, key recruitments, new therapies and capital investments.

Research HighlightsHighlights
Global trial co-led by Geyer expected to set new standard of breast cancer care
Charles Geyer, Jr., M.D.
Developmental Therapeutics member
A phase 3 international clinical trial co-led by Charles Geyer and recently presented at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium is expected to change the way a specific type of breast cancer is treated in a subset of patients. The trial, known as KATHERINE, found that trastuzumab emtansine reduced the risk of cancer recurring by 50 percent in patients with HER2-positive early-stage breast cancer who had residual disease after receiving neoadjuvant therapy. 

Yang develops world's most advanced drug delivery system with the highest tumor-targeting ability
Hu Yang, Ph.D.
Developmental Therapeutics member
In pre-clinical studies, Hu Yang and a team of Massey scientists designed a new drug delivery system called leutusome that is a composite of nanoparticles from both leukocytes and tumor cells. They fused leutusome with the chemotherapy drug paclitaxel before injecting it into a mouse model of head and neck cancer, and found that it nearly doubled the tumor-targeting abilities of any other nanoparticles reported in previous literature.

Center News Center1
Massey patient shows complete response to new CAR T-cell therapy

Chesterfield resident Jonathan Newby was the first patient in the state to receive FDA-approved CAR T-Cell immunotherapy. 100 days following his treatment for B-cell lymphoma, Newby has shown a complete response. John McCarty provided expert commentary in a news segment by ABC 8 News.

Member Showcase MemberShowcase

Tang studies nanoparticles as a means to develop more effective treatments for drug-resistant solid tumors

Developmental Therapeutics member
Christina Tang joined Massey as a member of the Developmental Therapeutics program in 2018. She designs novel chemotherapeutic systems in an attempt to gain insight on new drug combinations that could enhance the treatment of drug-resistant solid tumors. Tang is an assistant professor in the Department of Chemical and Life Science Engineering at 
the VCU College of Engineering.

Researcher Recognition Recognition
Acunzo and Zhu will further work in cancer immunotherapy and microRNA through career development program

Developmental Threapeutics member
Developmental Therapeutics member

Mario Acunzo and Guizhi (Julian) Zhu have been named Clinical Research KL2 Scholars at the VCU Kenneth and Diane Wright Center for Clinical and Translational Research. Acunzo plans to investigate the role of microRNA editing in lung cancer progression and early detection. Zhu will spend three years developing next-generation nanomedicines for combination cancer immunotherapy.

For a full listing of events, 

mediaMassey in the Media

NewsTop Cancer News
Share with us your research, awards and accomplishments!
Submit your news to Blake Belden at or (804) 628-4578.

Archived newsletters can be found here:
  Connect with us!
Join Massey's online communities.
Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter
View our videos on YouTube