RTOG Foundation Announces Four New Committees and their Appointed Committee Leaders

August 04, 2022

RTOG Foundation has recently announced that it has created four new committees to help streamline the group’s research efforts towards their goal of improving survival and quality of life outcomes for adults with cancer. These committees include the Research Committee, Governance Committee, Membership Committee, and Communications Committee.

Stuart Wong, MD, is appointed the Chair of the RTOG Foundation Governance Committee. Dr. Wong is the Director of the Center for Disease Prevention Research and Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology Oncology, Department of Medicine at the Medical College of Wisconsin. He is also a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Head and Neck Steering Committee.  Dr. Wong is the principal investigator for the NCTN Lead Academic Participating Site (LAPS) grant at the Medical College of Wisconsin . Additionally, Dr. Wong is a Vice Chair of the Head and Neck Cancer Committee for NRG Oncology.

In his role as Chair of the Governance Committee, Dr. Wong will help with the oversight to the ongoing organizational activities within RTOG Foundation and ensure that all efforts are aligned with the organization’s research mission.

Mark Mishra, MD, is named the RTOG Foundation Research Committee Co-Chair. Dr. Mishra is an Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and Associate Director of the Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Network Program.  He also serves as Director of the Department of Radiation Oncology Clinical Research Program at the University of Maryland Medical System and is the Vice chair of the Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Clinical Research Committee. His focus is on the treatment of patients with tumors of the central nervous system and genitourinary tract, as well as breast cancer. Dr. Mishra received the American Society of Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) Comparative Effectiveness Grant and is the Comparative Effectiveness co-chair for the recently activated NRG-BN009 and NRG-CC009 phase III clinical trials. He is also a member of the NRG Oncology Brain Tumor Committee. Dr. Mishra’s clinical trial efforts at the University of Maryland and NRG led to him being a recipient of the 2021 NCI Cancer Clinical Investigator Team Leadership Award.  

Dr. Mishra is joined by Edwin Posadas, MD, who will also be Co-Chair of the RTOG Foundation Research Committee. Dr. Posadas is the Director of the Experimental Therapeutics Program and the Medical Director of the Urologic Oncology Program at the Samuel Oschin Comprehensive Cancer Institute at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Dr. Posadas is currently working to define the function of the protein FYN, circulating tumor cells, and immune cells in prostate cancer, with the goal of applying his basic science findings to the development of new therapies and diagnostic tools that will directly benefit men with advanced prostate cancer.

Drs. Mishra and Posadas will provide supervision and guidance to RTOG Foundation’s research program as the leaders of the Research Committee. The Committee will be in control of driving the group's protocol portfolio.

Seth A. Rosenthal, MD, FACR, FASTRO, will be the Chair of the RTOG Foundation Membership Committee. Dr. Rosenthal is a Radiation Oncologist at Sutter Health in Roseville, CA and has been a RTOG/NRG investigator for over 30 years. He is a member of the NRG Oncology Genitourinary Cancer Core Committee and the RTOG Foundation Board of Directors. Additionally, he was the Co-Principal Investigator of Phase III RTOG/NRG Oncology clinical trials 9902 and 0521, which examined novel treatment approaches for men with high-risk prostate cancer. Dr. Rosenthal is Board Certified in Radiation Oncology and is a member of the American College of Radiology, the American Radium Society, the American Medical Association, and the American Society of Therapeutic Radiation Oncology.

As Chair, Dr. Rosenthal will be guiding the Membership Committee in their efforts establish processes around RTOG Foundation members to and expand the reach of the organization’s network. 

Kristin Higgins, MD, will be the Chair of the RTOG Foundation Communications Committee. Dr. Higgins is an Associate Professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Emory University School of Medicine and serves as Medical Director of Radiation Oncology of the Emory Clinic at Winship Cancer Institute's Clifton campus location. She is a member of the American Society for Radiation Oncology, the American Board of Radiology, the International Association for the study of Lung Cancer, and the American Society of Clinical Oncology. Additionally, she is a member of the NRG Oncology Board of Directors and a member of the NRG Oncology’s Lung Cancer Core Committee, Communications Committee, Research Strategy Committee and Protocol Operations Management Committee. Dr. Higgins also is the Principal Investigator of the NRG Oncology/Alliance NRG-LU005 trial testing the addition of atezolizumab to chemoradiation in patients with limited-stage small cell lung cancer that recently reached its patient accrual goal.

In her role as Chair, Dr. Higgins will use her expertise to increase engagement within RTOG Foundation’s research community and develop communications channels to meet the needs of the group.

“RTOG Foundation is exhilarated by the continued growth of our organization and the impact that these new committees will undoubtably make. We look forward to the future vision of RTOG Foundation and the outcomes this will have in our research community,” stated Dr. Quynh-Thu Le, MD, FACR, FASTRO, Chair of RTOG Foundation and Chair of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Stanford University.

About RTOG Foundation

The RTOG Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving outcomes for cancer patients through the conduct of practice changing clinical trials. RTOGF collaborates with partners from industry and federally funded programs to support its research. RTOGF is the successor of the National Cancer Institute(NCI)-funded Radiation Therapy Oncology group that was organized in 1968 as a national clinical cooperative group for the purpose of conducting multicenter radiation therapy research and clinical investigations. It was part of the NCI-funded cooperative group program and managed by the American College of Radiology (ACR) from 1971 until 2014. During that time, it activated over 500 protocols, accrued more than 110,000 patients to cooperative group studies, and published over 1,000 papers reporting the results of its findings. RTOGF has continued its close relationship with ACR to engage in clinical trial research collaborations with a variety of industry partners and participates in Federal grant-funded research through its leadership in the NCI National Clinical Trial Network group NRG Oncology.


Participate in RTOG Research

To participate as an RTOG study investigator, your organization must be part of the RTOG Foundation network. Patients who wish to participate in a study must be under the care of an RTOG participating investigator. For additional information, email info@rtog.org or call 1-215-574-3173.

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