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News & Press: SIT Newsletter

SIT Newsletter: October 2020

Wednesday, October 7, 2020  
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October 9
Photo Contest Submission Deadline
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October 9
Registration deadline for the Annual Meeting

October 18
SIT Workshop (immediately prior and in conjunction to the Annual Meeting)
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October 18-21
RRS Annual Meeting

View job postings, submit a resume and access career resources.

Postdoctoral Fellow- Immune/DNA Repair Response
Sawakuchi and Shaitelman Lab
Houston, TX
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Data Sciences/Chemistry Data Curator/Bioinformatics
Rancho Biosciences
San Diego, CA
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AACR Virtual Special Conference: Epigenetics & Metabolism
October 15-18, 2020

RRS Annual Meeting
Now Virtual!
October 18-21, 2020

NIH Office of Intramural Training and Education Seminars
Time/Date Varies

1st International Workshop on Radiobiology of Molecular Radiotherapy
Montpellier, France
March 2021
Info Coming Soon

ImmunoRad - International Conference on Immunotherapy-Radiotherapy Combination
Paris, France
September 22-24, 2021

Jason Domogauer- Medicine
Jade Moore- Medicine/Biology
Britta Langen- Biology
Brian Canter- Biology
Julie Constanzo- BioPhysics
Calvin Leung- Medicine/Biology
Rutul Patel- Pharmacology
Alexandra Taraboletti-Biology
Tien Tang- Biology
Frederico Kiffer: Neurobiology
Cato Milder: Epidemiology
Nicole Chmielewski-Stivers: Oncology
Lydia Wilson: Medicine/Physics

Dear SIT Community,

It’s hard to believe it’s already October and the RRS Annual Meeting is almost here. It feels as though just yesterday was March, and I was first learning to adjust my extroverted self to social distancing. Unlike most, I have long been acclimatized to working from home part-time, since my workplace is in Houston, but I’m pursuing my PhD in Nashville. Still, settling into full-time work from my bedroom desk, I’ve noticed I have a lot less time in transit, far fewer changes in scenery, and much more time with my cat. For better or worse, I’ve also had ample time to think.

It’s a funny thing that when you suddenly have time to think, your mind slowly and subtly begins to wander to those problems you’ve stored in the furthest recesses of your brain, out of sight and out of mind, because surely now is not the time to think about them. Or so you tell yourself, until you have nothing but time on your hands. Sitting in my bargain of an Office Depot chair, I’ve found myself face to face with an unanswered question hailing from some of my earliest memories. And through a lot of self-work and nerve-wracking conversations with friends and family, I have embraced the process of coming out as a transgender man.

One of the running themes of the pandemic has been the question asked by so many: “In what way do you think COVID-19 will affect your future?” While I’m sure we will face even more challenges requiring adaptation in the months to come, I think a more relevant question may be, “What has COVID-19 forced you to confront that can help you evolve as a human being?” I think that answer is going to be different for everyone, but I’m looking forward to hearing the stories we will tell as we meet virtually now, and hopefully, in person soon.

While I will miss singing karaoke (and impressing you with my fabulous Lady Gaga impersonations), I look forward to seeing your virtual faces at our SIT Workshop and happy hour. I’m sure we will make this year as memorable as if we were all together in Hawai’i.


Cato M. Milder
SIT Committee Member

We are also on Facebook! Check out the SIT Facebook group .


Join RRS in bringing our community together with the 2020 Annual Meeting Photo Contest! Keep in mind, this can be as serious (or not) as you wish!

The rules are simple:
  1. Pick a category from the below options.
  2. Post your picture on social media with #RadRes2020 and caption with your chosen category OR send your picture to with your category selection. (Your photo must be appropriate as it will be shared!)
  3. Enter as many photos as you’d like before October 9, 2020.
Contest Categories:
  • Best Past Precision X-Ray Final Night Event Photo
  • Best Photobomb While at Work or at an RRS Event
  • Best Parenting-While-Working-From-Home
  • Extreme Sciencing!!!
  • Best Dance Moves
Winners will be selected a week before the Annual Meeting and will be given the opportunity upon the live announcement to give a short “speech” during the Precision X-Ray Closing Event held Wednesday, October 21, 2020, at the close of the live meeting.
The Radiation Research for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (REDI) initiative has continued making plans for this year and the future. We are excited to have all interested SIT members participate in this initiative, and we thank those of you who have already joined our biweekly meetings.

Two components of the REDI initiative are to “evaluate historical oppression of the Black community and other minority groups by radiation researchers and policy influenced by radiation research” and to “Uplift contributions made by the Black community to radiation research and the Radiation Research Society.” We are delighted that two of the speakers at the special session on Racial Justice in Radiation Research and Oncology at the RRS Meeting this year are Dr. Karen Winkfield and Dr. Curtiland Deville, radiation oncologists who have authored papers in Advances in Radiation Oncology and the International Journal of Radiation Oncology*Biology*Physics. These articles discuss actionable plans for dismantling systemic racism in the field of radiation oncology and other occupations.

Here, we present two of their papers with brief summaries and links to the full text if you are interested in learning more.

Systemic social injustice impacting Black individuals such as residential segregation, police brutality, lack of educational funding at all levels, and a false meritocracy in resident selection are all responsible for the systematic exclusion of Black individuals from medical programs and from the radiation oncology profession. It is critical that professional organizations acknowledge systemic racism and the limits it places on Black individuals. This paper provides a history of social and professional racism and presents practical actions that can be taken to support and promote Black radiation oncologists.
Chapman CH, Gabeau D, Pinnix CC, Deville C, Gibbs IC, Winkfield KM. Why Racial Justice Matters in Radiation Oncology. Advances in Radiation Oncology. 2020 Jul;S2452109420301627.

Black individuals have been historically underrepresented in the radiation oncology (RO) workforce. However, a comprehensive and qualitative analysis of this disparity is lacking. Data collected from public registries from 1995 to 2016 were analyzed by the authors, and it was found that Black people were significantly underrepresented in the RO workforce when compared to Black representation in other medical professions. The authors recommend that a deliberate effort is required to understand the systemic and non-systemic barriers facing Black people, along with evidence-based targeted interventions to ensure diversification of the RO workforce.
Deville C, Cruickshank I, Chapman CH, Hwang W-T, Wyse R, Ahmed AA, et al. I Can’t Breathe: The Continued Disproportionate Exclusion of Black Physicians in the United States Radiation Oncology Workforce. International Journal of Radiation Oncology*Biology*Physics. 2020 Jul;S0360301620314139.

We hope you find these articles educational and insightful, as we have, and we hope to see you at the special session on Racial Justice in Radiation Research and Oncology in the RRS meeting on October 18th.

If you want to get involved with the REDI Committee please contact Brian Canter at or join our biweekly Zoom meetings. The next 3 meetings will be alternating Wednesdays (September 2, 16, and 30) at 12:00 EDT and you can join through this link:

Cato Milder, REDI Member

If you have any suggestions or questions about policy and advocacy, please contact me at

This month we would like to make a special “shout-out” to all the SIT Mentors!

As your SIT Committee, we believe that a good mentor is a crucial part of a researcher’s development and can greatly influence one’s career. Because of this, at each Annual Meeting we take the opportunity to celebrate a specific individual who has gone above and beyond their role as a mentor, and present them with the SIT Excellence in Mentorship Award.

This year's Award goes to
Ester Hammond, PhD, of the University of Oxford!

Andersson CK, Elvborn M, Spetz JKE, Langen B, Forssell-Aronsson EB. Circadian rhythm influences the biodistribution of 131I in mice. Sci Rep. 2020 Sep 23;10(1):15541.

Constanzo J, Midavaine E, Fouquet J, Lepage M, Descoteaux M, Kirby K, Tremblay L, Masson-Côté L, Geha S, Longpré JM, Whittingstall K, Paquette B, Sarret P. Brain irradiation leads to persistent neuroinflammation and long-term neurocognitive dysfunction in a region-specific manner, Prog. Neuropsychopharmacol. Biol. Psychiatry (2020).

Lis M, Donetti M, Newhauser W, Wolf M, Steinsberger T, Graeff C. A modular dose delivery system for treating moving targets with scanned ion beams: Performance and safety characteristics, and preliminary test. European Journal of Medical Physics (2020).

Pirkkanen J, Zarnke AM, Laframboise T, Lees SJ, Tai TC, Boreham DR, Thome C. A Research Environment 2 km Deep-Underground Impacts Embryonic Development in Lake Whitefish (Coregonus clupeaformis). Frontiers in Earth Science (2020).

Wadsworth BJ, Cederberg M, Lee CM, Firmino NS, Franks SE, Pan J, Colpo N, Kuo-Lin KS, Benard F, Bennewith KL. Angiotensin II type 1 receptor blocker telmisartan inhibits the development of transient hypoxia and improves tumour response to radiation Cancer Lett. 2020 Aug 4;S0304-3835(20)30370-0. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2020.07.015.

Do you know of any SIT publications? Please let us know!

Graduate Funding Opportunities Database
Application Deadline: Varies
Application Deadline: Varies

Burroughs Wellcome Awards
Application Deadline: TBD

Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council

Application Deadline: Open

Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung/Foundation
Application Deadline: Open
Antibodies Travel Grants Program
Application Deadline: Quarterly
ASTRO Funding Opportunities
ASTRO funds research in radiation biology, cancer biology and radiation physics. Funding opportunities are available for junior faculty and residents.

Proposal Central
Database of foundation, non-profits and organizations grants.
Do you know of any other funding sources? Please let us know!
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