Honors & Accomplishments

MUSC Hollings Cancer Center researchers, doctors, and staff are routinely recognized by local and national organizations for their innovative research efforts, dedication to outstanding patient care, and leadership in the fight against cancer.

Curran, George to moderate ACS panel 

head shot of a smiling doctor 
Virgilio George, M.D.
head shot of a smiling doctor 
Thomas Curran, M.D.









Thomas Curran, M.D., and Virgilio George, M.D., have been invited by the American College of Surgeons Advisory Council for Colon and Rectal Surgery to chair and co-chair, respectively, a panel session at the ACS Clinical Congress 2023 to be held Oct. 22-26, 2023, in Boston, Massachusetts. This presentation intends to examine the evidence for extended venous thromboembolism prophylaxis in postoperative cancer patients, current guidelines, and guideline adherence. Future directions to improve guideline concordant care will be explored.


Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco honors Hollings researcher

Dr. Michael Cummings 

The Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco has named Michael Cummings, Ph.D., as the recipient of the 2023 Doll-Wynder award. This award honors scientists who have made groundbreaking advances in public health, public policy or epidemiological research. It will be presented during SRNT's 2023 Annual Meeting in San Antonio.



Hollings NCORP recognized for specimen diversification efforts

The MUSC National Cancer Institute Minority/Underserved Community Oncology Research Program was recognized with a Certificate of Excellence from the NCI Community Oncology Research Program for its efforts to collect specimens to advance the scientific understanding of the reasons behind early onset malignancies in racial and ethnic minorities. The National Cancer Institute initiative, “Early Onset Malignancies Initiative (EOMI): Molecular profiling of Breast, Colon, Kidney, Liver, Multiple Myeloma, and Prostate among Racially and Ethnically Diverse Populations,” seeks to generate datasets to catalog the alterations seen in human tumors.

Carroll named to NRG committee

head shot of Dr. Steven Carroll 

Steven Carroll, M.D., Ph.D., has been appointed to serve a six-year term on the Pathology Committee of NRG Oncology. NRG Oncology conducts multi-institutional clinical and translational research focused on gender-specific cancers and locally advanced malignancies of all types.

“I’m very pleased that I have the opportunity to serve as a member of this committee. NRG Oncology is an important consortium and having a seat at the table with them raises the national visibility of Hollings Cancer Center," Carroll said. 

Ford serves as session chair during AACR conference

Marvella Ford 

Marvella E. Ford, Ph.D., associate director, Population Science and Cancer Disparities, was honored to serve as session chair during the 15th AACR Conference on The Science of Cancer Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic Minorities and the Medically Underserved for the “Clinical Cancer Research and Diversity” panel. As session chair, she facilitated a discussion about how underrepresentation of ethnically diverse populations in cancer clinical trials results in the inequitable distribution of the risks and benefits of this research with the following leaders: Dr. Jane Figueiredo, Samuel Oschin Comprehensive Cancer Institute, Los Angeles; Dr. Fatima Karzai, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Maryland; and Dr. David P. Turner, Massey Cancer Center, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, Virginia.

Chera named a fellow of the American Society for Radiation Oncology

head shot of Dr. Bhisham Chera 

The world’s largest society for radiation oncology professionals recently voted to confer upon Bhisham Chera, M.D., the designation of American Society for Radiation Oncology Fellow (FASTRO). Chera will receive his FASTRO designation at an awards ceremony in San Antonio in October, during ASTRO’s 64th Annual Meeting.

“Dr. Chera, a physician at MUSC Hollings Cancer Center, joins an elite group of just 27 physicians and medical physicists who are recognized this year for their far-reaching contributions to the field of radiation oncology and their progress in advancing cancer research, education and patient care,” said Laura A. Dawson, M.D., FASTRO, Chair of the ASTRO Board of Directors. “Congratulations to Dr. Chera for achieving the designation of ASTRO Fellow.”

Chera is a board-certified radiation oncologist, vice chairman for Safety and Quality Assurance in the Department of Radiation Oncology, and the Wendy & Keith Wellin Endowed Chair in Radiation Oncology. His primary clinical emphasis is in the treatment of head and neck and skin cancers. Chera's academic interests are in head and neck oncology and health care quality and safety improvement. He is nationally and internationally known for his pioneering work in evaluating reduced intensity radiation and chemotherapy treatments for patients with human papillomavirus (HPV) associated with throat cancers. He has also co-invented a blood-based biomarker for HPV-associated cancers.

Awarded annually since 2006, the ASTRO Fellows program recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to radiation oncology through research, education, patient care and/or service to the field. Since its inception, the FASTRO designation has been awarded to just 421 of ASTRO’s 10,000 members worldwide.

Radiation Oncology team earns reaccreditation

American College of Radiology Radiation Oncology Accredited Facility logoThe MUSC Health Radiation Oncology team has earned full three-year reaccreditation from the American College of Radiology.

By seeking accreditation, Hollings Cancer Center voluntarily undergoes a meticulous third-party review of its staff, equipment, treatment planning and quality control processes — all to ensure the best possible patient care.

Members of the Hollings radiation oncology team, which includes doctors, nurses, medical physicists, radiation therapists and administrators, saw the reaccreditation site review as an opportunity to showcase their data-driven quality assurance program, through which the team constantly analyzes patient outcomes to derive the best result for each individual.

DuBois receives AACR award

Dr. Raymond N. DuBois speaks after receiving award at AACR conventionHollings Cancer Center director Raymond N. DuBois, M.D., Ph.D., received the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) Distinguished Service Award during the association’s 2022 convention. The award recognizes people whose extraordinary work has exemplified the AACR’s mission to prevent and cure all cancers through research, education, communication, collaboration, science policy, advocacy and funding for cancer research.

Celebrating its 115th anniversary this year, the AACR was founded in 1907, when a cancer diagnosis was essentially a death sentence. DuBois said the AACR has been invaluable in a sea change that has happened in how cancer is perceived and treated and that he has been privileged to contribute to the demystification of what now is seen as a complex collection of diseases.

MUSC Health named 'Program of Experience' for CAR-T

Dr. Michelle Hudspeth with patientMUSC Health has received designation from Emerging Therapy Solutions® (ETS) as a “Program of Experience” for CAR-T therapy. ETS created this designation after evaluating centers across the U.S. that provide CAR-T services and identifying the leading CAR-T programs with the essential experience and resources, including volume of CAR-Ts administered.

"We are thrilled with this designation for our CAR-T program. It reflects the dedication and tireless efforts of our team to deliver exceptional care and work collaboratively across MUSC for the best treatment options and outcomes for our patients," said Michelle Hudspeth, M.D., director of Adult and Pediatric Blood & Marrow Transplantation.

Hollings researchers make prestigious list

Dr. John LemastersIn 2019, Stanford University began compiling a list of the most referenced – and in a way, most influential – researchers in the world by determining the top 100,000 researchers across all fields as well as the top 2% in their own subfield disciplines.

In the latest edition of the list, MUSC had five faculty members make the top 2% across all fields, including Hollings director Raymond N. DuBois, M.D., Ph.D., and Hollings members John Lemasters, M.D., Ph.D., (pictured) and Don Rockey, M.D.

Ford to serve on AACR committee

Dr. Marvella FordMarvella Ford, Ph.D., associate director for Population Sciences and Cancer Disparities at Hollings, received national recognition for her work in combatting cancer disparities in South Carolina. Ford was asked to serve as a Program Committee member for the upcoming 2022 American Association of Cancer Research Conference to be held in September in Philadelphia. As a Program Committee member, Ford will be tasked with providing recommendations for session topics, reviewing research for presentations, and possibly serving as a presenter herself.

Cummings wins prestigious national award

Dr. Michael Cummings stands outsideMichael Cummings, Ph.D., is one of two scientists to win the annual Alton Ochsner Award Relating Smoking and Disease. Over the last 36 years, just over 55 scientists, researchers and industry leaders have been recognized with the prestigious award.

Wang receives melanoma research grant

Dr. Jen Wang stands in front of shelves of equipment in her lab

Haizhen (Jen) Wang, Ph.D., recently was awarded a three-year $225,000 Young Investigator grant from the Melanoma Research Alliance to further her research on activating T-cells to fight melanoma and testing new therapeutic strategies.

Lockhart to lead MUSC Hematology & Oncology

Dr. Craig Lockhart

Craig Lockhart, M.D., was recruited as the new chief of the Division of Hematology & Oncology in MUSC’s Department of Medicine and will also serve as associate director for clinical science at Hollings, effective April 1, 2021.

Klauber-DeMore recognized for academic innovation

Dr. Nancy Klauber-DeMore stands in her lab

In recognition of the lasting impact of her work on cancer patients, Hollings researcher Nancy Klauber-DeMore, M.D., was named as a 2020 fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI). Induction into the NAI fellows program is the highest professional distinction accorded solely to academic innovators.

Carpenter named to NIH advisory council

Matthew Carpenter

Cancer Control program co-leader Matthew Carpenter, Ph.D., is joining an advisory council to Dr. Noni Byrnes, director of the Center for Scientific Review at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The council is tasked with providing critical input to the Center for Scientific Review on a variety of issues related to the NIH peer review process.

Blanco receives prestigious grant award for research

Jezabel R. Blanco works in her lab

Hollings researcher Jezabel R. Blanco, Ph.D., was one of only two recipients in the country to receive the inaugural Rally Career Development Award for Young Investigators in 2020. The $300,000 grant will be used to study a subgroup of pediatric brain tumors that are particularly deadly.