Nov 12, 2020 1:00 PM

Author: Carley Lehauli

Photo of Siwen Hu-Lieskovan, PhD, MD
Siwen Hu-Lieskovan, PhD, MD

Siwen Hu-Lieskovan, PhD, MD, physician scientist at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) and assistant professor of medicine at the University of Utah, has received the National Cancer Institute (NCI) 2020 Cancer Clinical Investigator Team Leadership Award (CCITLA). Hu-Lieskovan is director of solid tumor immunotherapy at HCI, serves as co-chair of the Immunotherapy Committee at the SWOG Clinical Trial Network, and leads several national immuno-oncology trials, including immunoMATCH (iMATCH).

NCI’s CCITLA was established in 2009 to recognize outstanding clinical investigators at NCI-designated Cancer Centers who participate extensively in NCI-funded clinical trials, and whose leadership and activities promote a successful culture of collaborative clinical research. Each investigator is a full-time faculty member who is a board-certified physician and has practiced medicine between three and eight years post-fellowship. The award will provide partial salary support for two years for Hu-Lieskovan to engage in activities and efforts related to the award.

“The NCI is pleased to recognize eight talented investigators who dedicate themselves to the conduct of cancer clinical trials,” said Sheila Prindiville, MD, MPH, director of NCI’s Coordinating Center for Clinical Trials. “These awardees—six women and two men—have outstanding leadership skills and will be conducting NCI-supported clinical trials across many disease sites in a cross-section of the American public, including adults, children, adolescents, and young adults. These awardees will also be educating and mentoring the next generation of clinical trialists and working to improve community engagement and access to clinical trials.”

Hu-Lieskovan will use the CCITLA to establish a clinical and translational program around cancer immunotherapy, provide consultation and assistance to clinical investigators, and promote collaborations on immune-monitoring studies. This will include design and execution of clinical and translational studies, as well as result interpretation.

“I appreciate this great honor,” said Hu-Lieskovan. “It provides opportunity for me to build a comprehensive translational program around cancer immunotherapy to elevate our patient care and research at HCI and supports my efforts developing immunotherapy-focused clinical trials at SWOG.”

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About Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah

Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah is the official cancer center of Utah and the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center in the Mountain West. The campus includes a state-of-the-art cancer specialty hospital and two buildings dedicated to cancer research. Huntsman Cancer Institute provides patient care, cancer screening, and education at community clinics and affiliate hospitals throughout the Mountain West. It is consistently recognized among the best cancer hospitals in the country by U.S. News and World Report. The region’s first proton therapy center opened in 2021 and a major hospital expansion is underway. Huntsman Cancer Institute is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment for staff, students, patients, and communities. Advancing cancer research discoveries and treatments to meet the needs of patients who live far away from a major medical center is a unique focus. More genes for inherited cancers have been discovered at Huntsman Cancer Institute than at any other cancer center, including genes responsible for breast, ovarian, colon, head and neck cancers, and melanoma. Huntsman Cancer Institute was founded by Jon M. and Karen Huntsman.

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