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2014 RRS Awards & Honors
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Failla Award:
Peter O'Neill, PhD, DSc, FRSC

Primary Appointment
Department of Oncology, University of Oxford
St Cross College

Bio Statement:

Professor Peter O’Neill is Head of the DNA Damage Group and Deputy Director of the Oxford Institute of Radiation Oncology at the University of Oxford following his move in 2007 from the MRC Radiation and Genome Stability Unit, Harwell (1983-2007), where he held several senior positions.

Professor O’Neill is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry. He is Course Director of the MSc course on Radiation Biology at the Institute and a Fellow at St Cross College, Oxford.  During a long career he has become an expert on the chemistry of the types of DNA damage induced by ionising radiation, from the early free radical processes to the complexities of damage, and how these may contribute to carcinogenesis or radiation cytotoxicity.  More recently his major research interests have focussed on understanding the challenges that radiation-induced clustered DNA damage sites present to the repair pathways and as a consequence contribute to carcinogenesis at environmental radiation levels or to the killing of tumour cells.  His research has resulted in more than 225 peer reviewed papers. He has mentored 20 PhD students and numerous post-doctoral fellows.

He was awarded his BSc (Leeds, UK) in Chemistry in 1970 and PhD, under the supervision of Dr Salmon and Lord Dainton, in 1974. In 1996 he was awarded a D.Sc. from the University of Leeds in recognition of his contributions to 'Free Radical Processes in Chemistry, Biochemistry and Biology’. His formative years also involved post-doctoral periods at the Max Planck Institute in Mulheim, Germany (1974-77) and the Institute of Cancer Research, London (1977-1983).  He held several offices in the ARR including chairman from 1996-98 and was Chemistry councilor (1998-01) and the President of the Radiation Research Society from 2010-11.  He is a senior Editor of Radiation Research and the International Journal of Radiation Biology; a Trustee of LH Gray Trust (1989-95); Chair Miller Trust for Radiation Chemistry (2005).  He received the Association for Radiation Research’s Weiss Medal in 2010.

Among the several grants that he is or has been funded through include the Medical Research Council UK, EU grants and the Department of Energy/NASA low-dose radiation program. He served on numerous national and International Committees over the past 20 to 30 years.


Michael Fry Award:
David S. Yu, MD, PhD

Primary Appointment
Assistant Professor, Department of Radiation Oncology
Emory University School of Medicine

Bio Statement:

Dr. Yu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Emory University School of Medicine. He received his MD from the University of Texas at Southwestern Medical School and PhD from the University of Cambridge prior to completing residency training in Radiation Oncology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He graduated with honors from Stanford University with a BS in Biology.

Dr. Yu is actively engaged in both clinical and basic science research. He is interested in understanding how cells respond to replication stress and how we can utilize this knowledge for improvements in cancer diagnosis and treatment. One interest of the lab is to understand the role of sirtuin deacetylases, and more generally the acetylome, in orchestrating the replication stress response. A second interest of the lab is to identify novel components of the replication stress response, which mediate sensitivity of cancer cells to DNA damaging agents, utilizing high throughput loss of function genetic screens. A third interest of the lab is to understand mechanistically how these novel replication stress response proteins function using cell biological, genetic, and biochemical approaches to define the functions of these proteins. Finally, we are interested in translating insights gained from our mechanistic analyses to improvements in the clinic. By exploiting defects in the replication stress response, we hope to utilize novel replication stress response proteins as biomarkers for clinical response and outcome to specific cancer treatments and as novel therapeutic targets to personalize cancer therapy. The ultimate goal of Dr. Yu's work is to translate insights gained from his interactions with his patients and the laboratory to innovative therapies to improve the quality of care for patients with cancer.

Dr. Yu is a Georgia Cancer Coalition Distinguished Cancer Clinician and Scientist. He is currently funded by a NIH/NCI R01, a NIH/NCI K08, a DOD PRCRP Discovery Award, a PanCAN/AACR Career Development Award, and a Georgia Cancer Coalition Distinguished Cancer Scholar Award. Dr. Yu has authored a number of publications in high impact journals, including Nature, Cell, Molecular Cell, EMBO, and PNAS. During his residency training, Dr. Yu was an American Board of Radiology (ABR) Holman Research Pathway fellow. He received the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) Resident Clinical/Basic Science Research Award and Radiologic Society of North America (RSNA) Roentgen Resident/Fellow Research Award.

Dr. Yu is a member of the ASTRO Radiation and Cancer Biology Committee Research Council, ASTRO Research Evaluation Committee Research Council, American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), Radiation Research Society (RRS), and RSNA among others. He is also a member of the Winship Cancer Institute Cancer Genetics and Epigenetics (CGE) Progam, Emory Graduate Program in Cancer Biology (CB), and Graduate Program in Genetics and Molecular Biology (GMB).

In his free time, Dr. Yu enjoys running, gardening, traveling, cooking, and spending time with his family.

Marie Curie Award:
Claire Vanpouille-Box

Primary Appointment
Postdoctoral Fellow - Department of Pathology
New York University School of Medicine

Bio Statement:

As a basic scientist in biology and biophysics, I developed a keen interest in anti-cancer treatments based on the combination of immunotherapy and radiotherapy. During my Ph.D. (from Nov 2007 to Feb 2011) in INSERM U1066 lab (Angers University, France), I worked on a new treatment concept that aims at generating a localized radiation through the use of nanoparticles. The latter can deliver a high payload of radionuclides and target directly the tumor cells when the proper antibody and/or ligand are bound to their surface. I succeeded in demonstrating that nanovectorized radiotherapy (NR) was a powerful tool for the management of refractory tumors. Most importantly, the results I obtained stimulated my curiosity. My data showed that NR effects extend far beyond the treatment field by eliciting an anti-tumor immune response. I began to wonder how ionizing radiation could enhance anti-tumor immunity; a fact that was at odds with the long held view that radiation is immunosuppressive. Searching the literature I found at least some answers to my questions in the work done at New York University School of Medicine by Sandra Demaria’s group, and in 2011 I decided to join her lab for my post-doctoral training. In her lab, which has been leading studies to show that local radiotherapy can convert the tumor into an in situ vaccine, I have learned to look at radiation in a different way. Most importantly, I have grown to appreciate the importance of multidisciplinary interactions and collaborations in generating novel hypotheses and devising novel approaches to test them. For the past three years, I am studying the pro-immunogenic effects of radiotherapy and how to best harness these properties to generate a potent anti-tumor immune response.  The exciting results I have obtained have solidified my commitment to develop my career in this field.  I am thankful to my colleagues at NYU and at NCI without whom I would not have succeeded in my work, and to my mentor, who is a great role model. Finally, I acknowledge the support of the Department of Defense Breast Cancer Research program that awarded me a fellowship to support my work and I am greatly honored to receive the Marie Curie Award from the Radiation Research Society


Jack Fowler Award:
Igor Shuryak

Primary Appointment
Associate Research Scientist
Columbia University

Bio Statement:

My main interests include understanding and quantitatively modeling mechanisms of radiation carcinogenesis and resistance to ionizing radiation in humans and experimental organisms, and translating the results of such research into the clinic. My previous training and experience have been interdisciplinary, starting with biology (BA from Columbia University) and medicine (MD from SUNY Downstate College of Medicine). I completed the intensive Cancer Training Program (Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health), where for three years I improved my skills in cancer epidemiology and biostatistics. I received a PhD degree with distinction in 2010 from the department of Environmental Health Sciences (Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health) for mechanistic mathematical modeling of radiation-induced carcinogenesis. My work in this field, and also in the field of resistance to ionizing radiation, has resulted in multiple peer-reviewed publications. READ MORE....

 Radiation Research Editors Award:
Dana Greene-Schloesser, PhD

Awarded for:
Greene-Schloesser, D., Payne, V., Peiffer, A. M., Hsu, F-C.,Riddle, D. R., Zhao,W., Chan, M. D., Metheny-Barlow, L. and Robbins, M. E. The Peroxisomal Proliferator-Activated Receptor (PPAR) a Agonist, Fenofibrate, Prevents Fractionated Whole-Brain Irradiation-Induced Cognitive Impairment. Radiat. Res. 181, 33–44 (2014).”

Bio Statement

I received my B.S. in Biology from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, where I was a McNair Scholar and performed undergraduate research projects investigating the physiological effects of hypertriglyceridemia in transgenic mouse models, and assessing cage flight for rehabilitating injured raptors.  In 2007, I received my Ph.D. in Biology/Neurobiology from the University of Alaska in Fairbanks where I developed and characterized a novel mouse model for obsessive compulsive disorder. Additionally, I explored the interactions of environment, diet, and mental health among indigenous arctic populations. Building upon my prior work in behavioral neurobiology, I join Wake Forest School of Medicine, in 2009, as a Postdoctoral Fellow in Translational Radiation Oncology (TRADONC) program under the mentorship of the late Mike Robbins, Ph.D. During my TRADONC tenure, I pursued translational research focused on the pathogenesis, prevention, and treatment of radiation-induced brain injury, including cognitive impairment. Recently, I was accepted as an AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow at NIH in the Office of Behavioral and Social Science Research.  


Excellence in Mentorship:
Brian Marples, PhD

Primary Appointment
Radiobiologist and Professor
William Beaumont Hospital
and Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine

I was trained at the L.H. Gray Laboratory by Dr. Michael Joiner (Mount Vernon Hospital, Middlesex, UK), and subsequently worked with Dr. Kirsten Skov at the B.C. Cancer Research Institute (Vancouver, Canada) and Drs. Cathy West and Jolyon Hendry at the Paterson Institute (Christie Hospital, Manchester, UK). More recently he worked in the U.S. at Wayne State University(MI) until he relocated to Beaumont Health System (MI). Dr. Marples has interests in DNA repair mechanisms, low-dose radiation effects both in tumors and normal tissues. His interests have evolved into the use of low-doses of ionizing radiation in the treatment of malignant glioblastoma and non-malignant brain diseases involved with dementia and cognition such as Alzheimer’s Disease. Currently, his experimental research uses pre-clinical animal studies that involve the use of non-invasive imaging (microPET/CT/SPECT and MR) and functional assessments of radiation effects on the brain. His current studies at Beaumont, along with Drs. Sarah Krueger and George Wilson, are investigating altered fractionation patterns for glioblastoma which have been translated to a single-institution human clinical pilot study. Dr. Marples has extensive radiobiology teaching experience. Along Dr. Jacky Williams, he has served as a long-term mentor to the SIT program of the Radiation Research Society. He teaches graduate radiobiology courses at Oakland University, and prepares Beaumont Radiation Oncology residents for their Radiobiology Board exams. He is a faculty member of the NIH-funded teaching grant entitled Integrated Course in Biology and Physics of Radiation Oncology (IBPRO, Dr. Michael Joiner). He serves as Chair of American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology (ASTRO) Education Committee and Vice Chair of Science Education and Program Development committee. He is a biology editor for International Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics (Red Journal).


Honorary Member:
Martha Edington

Primary Appointment
Former Radiation Research Journal Editor
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