Friday, November 20, 2015

AHMC’s Asian Cancer Institute holds a lecture on Immuno-Thoracic Oncology by Dr. David Schrump

The Metro Pacific Hospital Group (MPHG) and the Asian Cancer Institute (ACI) of Asian Hospital and Medical Center (AHMC) have invited Dr. David Schrump to give a lecture on Immuno-Thoracic Oncology held at AHMC last November 10. 

Welcome remarks was delivered by AHMC President and CEO Mr. Andres M. Licaros while the closing remarks was given by Chief Medical Officer Dr. Joven Jeremius Q. Tanchuco. ACI Clinical Director Dr. Corazon A. Ngelangel served as the moderator. 

Dr. Schrump’s Manila Visit
The objective of Dr. Schrump's visit to Manila on November 5-12 is to begin the selection process of potential research fellows in the Philippines. The fellowship is viewed as a highly competitive award that could foster career development of the recipients, as well as further the research in the area of Thoracic Oncology.

Moreover, it provides a unique way to directly invest in the academic and clinical development of doctors and researchers who will have a direct positive impact on improving cancer care in the Philippines.

Coordinator of Thoracic Oncology Unit of AHMC’s Asian Cancer Institute Dr. Adrian Peter E. Desquitado also gave a talk entitled, “Thoracic Oncology in the Philippines.” 

Who is Stephen Solarz?
Stephen “Steve” J. Solarz was a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1975-1993) who received treatment for esophageal cancer at the NIH that added years to his life. His family and friends have established the Stephen J. Solarz Memorial Fund to support ongoing vital cancer research at National Institute of Health (NIH). 

Steve was treated by a phenomenal team of doctors and nurses led by Dr. David Schrump, head of the Thoracic and GI Oncology Branch, Center for Cancer Research in the NIH campus in Bethesda in Maryland, USA. Dr. Schrump’s pioneering research in the field of thoracic oncology led to the treatments that allowed Steve to live years beyond what otherwise would have been possible.

Solarz died of esophageal cancer on November 29, 2010 in Washington, D.C. at the age of 70. He was buried at the Congressional Cemetery in Washington, D.C.

Dr. Shrump's Clinical Work
Under the supervision of Dr. Schrump, five clinical trials supported by the Solarz Family’s fund are already in progress -- each has received FDA approval and patients are currently undergoing treatment. These include a cancer vaccine developed from the patient’s own tumor cells producing an immune response to kill cancer cells. 

Funding for this project comes from NIH and the Memorial Fund. To date, the Solarz Family has supported research pertaining to cancer stem cells and cancer therapy, and ongoing clinical trials targeting cancer stem cell signaling in thoracic malignancies, and evaluation of unique tumor vaccines as adjuvant therapy in cancer patients at high risk of recurrence following conventional treatments.

Dr. David Schrump with AHMC doctors

The International Fellowship Program
In 2014, the Solarz Fund launched an international fellowship program to attract top-tier physicians or those in post-doctorate level to a two-year research program in the Thoracic and GI Oncology Branch at NCI in the USA. It is a program designed to propel them to successful clinical research careers upon returning to their respective institutions in their home countries. 

The Fund is using a competitive process to identify qualified candidates, who would ideally be physicians who have completed medical or surgical residencies and are interested in pursuing high-level laboratory research, as well as patient care; or post-doctoral PhD. scientists who could be nominated for laboratory training in thoracic epigenetics.

Two researchers have already been chosen for this fellowship: Dr. Elvin Hekimoglu, aTurkish thoracic surgeon, who commenced in March 2015; and Dr. Shih-Hsin Hsiao from Taipei Medical University Hospital who is about to begin his fellowship in January 2016.

The lecture was part of the Stephen Solarz International Fellowship Program that was attended by AHMC doctors, nurses, radiology technicians and the media.

With partnerships of hospitals and organizations globally, the Asian Cancer Institute ofAsian Hospital and Medical Center seeks to further research and discover new innovations in treating cancer and continuous improvement of cancer care.

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