May 2018
Table of Contents

Funding Opportunities

Improving the Reach and Quality of Cancer Care in Rural Populations (R01 Clinical Trial Required)



Age-related Microbiota Changes and their Implications in Chronic Disease Prevention, Treatment and Progression (R01 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.


Associate Director, Basic Research (F51620))


Program Co-Leader, Cancer Molecular Genetics (F36090)

Shared Resource Spotlight

The VCU Microscopy Facility provides researchers with the equipment and expertise required to examine subcellular details at high resolution by both light and electron microscopy and to perform quantitative image analysis. Services include live-cell imaging, confocal laser scanning microscopy, spinning disc confocal microscopy, multi-photon laser scanning microscopy, fluorescence microscopy, sample preparation, stereology and image analysis. Staff is available for consultation, instruction, assistance and collaboration.


For further information, contact Scott Henderson, Ph.D., facility director, at (804) 828.0949, or 
or visit the Massey website.

Leaders' Update Update 
A message from Steven Grant, associate director for translational research

Grant, Steven
Massey Cancer Center has a strong history of translating our basic science research into successful investigator-initiated trials (IITs). We are continuing to develop and conduct promising Massey IITs, and I would like to highlight a couple of recent examples.

This message continues with more about exciting Massey IITs for breast cancer and acute myeloid leukemia/myelodysplastic syndrome.

Research HighlightsHighlights
Li identifies genes that could inform novel therapies for cancers caused by the Epstein-Barr virus
Renfeng Li, Ph.D.
Cancer Molecular Genetics member
A team of Massey researchers led by Renfeng Li identified two genes (PIAS1 and IRF8) that are responsible for governing the replication of the Epstein-Barr virus, an infection that drives the growth of several types of cancer. The discovery could lead to the development of novel therapies for 
virus-associated diseases including stomach cancer and lymphomas.


Phan leads clinical trial testing a new immunotherapy for metastatic melanoma
Giao Phan, M.D. 
Developmental Therapeutics member
Massey is one of 17 global sites participating in a phase 2 clinical trial to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of an adoptive cell-transfer therapy called LN-144 to treat patients with metastatic melanoma. LN-144 is made of tumor infiltrating lymphocytes that are harvested in a facility and later infused back into the patient to kill tumor cells. Conducted by Giao Phan, this trial represents the first 
cell-based immunotherapy performed by Massey. 


Center News Center1
Massey physicians named Richmond Magazine's Top Docs 2018

Twenty-nine Massey doctors were recognized as regional "Top Docs" in the April 2018 issue of Richmond Magazine.  The selections were the result of a survey that asked Richmond-area physicians who they would recommend in a range of specialties. 

Member Showcase MemberShowcase

Hayes studies behavioral interventions as a means to reduce cancer risk

Cancer Prevention and Control member
Rashelle Hayes joined Massey as a member of the Cancer Prevention and Control (CPC) research program in 2017. She studies how to help patients change unhealthy behaviors that may increase their cancer risk with a specific focus on tobacco treatment and obesity management. Hayes is an associate professor of psychiatry at the VCU School of Medicine and a clinical psychologist at VCU Health.

Researcher Recognition Recognition
Fang awarded $1.1M to study the role of fatty acids in the development of breast cancer

Cancer Cell Signaling
Massey researcher Xianjun Fang was awarded more than $1.1 million by the U.S. Department of Defense to study how an enzyme  contributes to the development of breast cancer. Fatty acid oxidation (FAO) is directly controlled by a rate-limiting enzyme called carnitine palmitoyltransferase (CPT1A). Fang's research will examine FAO's role in breast cancer development and explore the therapeutic benefits of inhibiting CPT1A and other FAO blockers in breast cancer models.

EventsUpcoming Events

Cancer Research Seminars
Wednesday, May 2, 4:00-5:00 PM: Maureen Murphy, Ph.D., of the Wistar Institute, will lead a seminar on the role of p53 in tumor suppression in GRL-131.

Monthly Research Meetings

Run 4 Massey 5k

For a full listing of events, 

mediaMassey in the Media

NewsTop Cancer News
JAMA Oncology
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