Published On: Thu, Oct 3rd, 2013

Professor Patrick G. Johnston awarded Society for Translational Oncology’s Pinedo prize

The Society for Translational Oncology (STO) is pleased to announce that Professor Patrick G. Johnston, M.D., Ph.D, Dean of the School of Medicine, Dentistry & Biomedical Sciences, Queen’s University Belfast, Northern Ireland, has been named recipient of the 2013 Bob Pinedo Cancer Care Prize.

Pinedo Award 2013 The Society for Translational Oncology (STO) is pleased to announce that Professor Patrick G. Johnston, M.D., Ph.D, Dean of the School of Medicine, Dentistry & Biomedical Sciences, Queen’s University Belfast, Northern Ireland, has been named recipient of the 2013 Bob Pinedo Cancer Care Prize. The award recognizes Prof. Johnston’s pioneering work in translating discovery science for the benefit of cancer patients. His determination and leadership in establishing a Comprehensive Cancer Care and Research Program in Northern Ireland is testament to his dedication to improving both clinical outcomes and quality of life for cancer patients.

This year's Pinedo Prize of $50,000 will be presented at the STO Fourth Annual meeting, to be hosted by the VU University Medical Center Cancer Center Amsterdam (VUmc CCA) at the ING House in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, October 1, 2013. Prof. Johnston will deliver the keynote lecture at the meeting which will be published by The Oncologist, STO's official journal.

In 2012, the success of his overarching vision was recognized when he was honored to accept a Diamond Jubilee Queen’s Anniversary Prize awarded by Her Majesty, The Queen, for The Queen’s University Belfast-led Comprehensive Cancer Centre and its achievement in reducing cancer mortality rates over the last decade. This significant improvement in cancer outcomes, underpinned by best quality care and innovative research, is a direct result of Prof. Johnston’s philosophy of placing the cancer patient at the center of the cancer care and research agenda.

“I am delighted and humbled to have been awarded The Pinedo Prize,” commented Prof. Johnston. “It is a great honor to have my work and that of my research team recognized by the international cancer research community in this way.”

Prof. Johnston’s research has focused on understanding the cellular signaling pathways in gastrointestinal tumors (with a particular emphasis on colorectal cancer) and using this information as a foundation to identify novel prognostics and diagnostic biomarkers, and molecular targets to rationalize and improve patient care. His many significant papers on both cytotoxic and targeted therapies have expanded knowledge of the treatment of colorectal cancer and provided new insights on mechanisms of drug resistance.

“Patrick Johnston exemplifies the caring and gifted physician and spectacular scientific leader who will carry oncology forward into the age of rational therapeutics,” commented Dr. Bruce Chabner, editor-in-chief of The Oncologist. “Since his early days of training at the National Cancer Institute, he has distinguished himself as a forceful advocate for investigation at the bedside, a commitment that has become the watchword of his stewardship of the Queen’s University medical faculty. His own work in the area of colon cancer biology and treatment sets the highest standard for his colleagues at Belfast and in the international community of cancer research."

Among his many professional activities, Prof. Johnston is currently on the Cancer Research UK Scientific Executive Board. He is a member of the Medical Research Council (MRC) Strategy Board and Chair of the MRC Translational Research Group. He is a Founder and Director of Almac Diagnostics. He is a member of the American Society for Clinical Oncology Scientific Program Committee, Chair of International Academy for Advanced Oncology, Japan, and Board Member of Medical Schools Council UK. As a Senior Editor for The Oncologist, Co-Editor of The Oncologist European Edition, and Co-Chairman of the Society for Translational Oncology, Prof. Johnston advocates for ways to speed the discovery and translation of important new treatments in the field of cancer medicine to the practice of global oncology.

The Pinedo Cancer Care Prize honors Professor H.M. (Bob) Pinedo, founder of the VU University Medical Center (VUmc) Cancer Center Amsterdam (CCA), who weds world-class cancer research with a devotion to his patients and their families. In the past seven years, The Bob Pinedo Cancer Care Prize has been awarded to:

  •     Bruce Chabner, MD – Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center
  •     Joseph Bertino, MD – The Cancer Institute of New Jersey
  •     Bob Löwenberg, MD – Erasmus University Medical Centre
  •     Richard O’Reilly, MD – Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  •     José Baselga, MD, PhD – Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center
  •     Gabriel N. Hortobágyi, MD – The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
  •     Richard L. Schilsky, MD – The University of Chicago Medical Center

Nominations for the 2014 Pinedo Prize will be received by email to the Nominating Committee: Pinedo.Prize@STO-online.org until February 1, 2014. All nominations will be evaluated by an international jury.

Dr. Bob Pinedo is originally from Curacao.

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