Research Newsletter - September 2022

News Briefs - Sept. 2022

Vera Bradley Foundation Raises $1,127,000 for IU breast cancer research

The Vera Bradley Foundation for Breast Cancer’s 2022 Vera Bradley Foundation for Breast Cancer Classic fundraiser raised $1,127,000 to support the Vera Bradley Foundation Center for Breast Cancer Research at the IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center (read the news release). With this donation, the foundation has provided $38.6 million to IU breast cancer research since 2000. Their generosity continues to support nearly 30 researchers as they make advances in breast cancer diagnosis and treatment. Thank you, Vera Bradley Foundation for Breast Cancer! Watch the highlight reel.


State of the Cancer Center recording is now available

Kelvin Lee, M.D., director of the IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center, presented the annual State of the Cancer Center address on Sept. 1 as part of the weekly Seminar Series. Watch a recording of the event.

NCI announces annual plan, budget

The National Cancer Institute has announced its annual plan and budget proposal for fiscal year 2024. The four scientific topics highlighted in the annual plan are asymptomatic multi-cancer detection, cell therapy to treat cancer, persistent poverty and cancer, and undruggable cancer targets. Read the plan.

AACR releases annual Cancer Progress Report

The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) released the 12th edition of its annual Cancer Progress Report, which showcases progress against cancer from the past year and underscores the importance of robust, sustained, and predictable funding for the National Institutes of Health and National Cancer Institute. View the full report.

Alesha Arnold: CURE’s Lung Cancer Heroes recipient

Congratulations to Alesha Arnold, R.N., BSN, CCRP, a clinical research nurse in breast oncology at the IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center, for being selected as one CURE magazine’s three 2022 Lung Cancer Heroes. Read more about this honor in the CURE news release. Congrats, Alesha!

New ads have arrived at the Indianapolis International Airport

A series of new cancer center ads, both print and digital, have taken flight at the Indianapolis International Airport. The ads feature Patrick Loehrer, M.D., and Huda Salman, M.D., When you’re traveling and see the print and digital ads at the airport, please take a photo of yourself with the ads. Please share on social media using #ResearchCuresCancer and send it to These ads succeed those featuring Larry Einhorn, M.D., and research nurse Alesha Arnold, R.N.

Kathi Ridley-Merriweather shares findings at the AACR Cancer Disparities Conference

Kathi Ridley-Merriweather, M.A., presented a poster at the AACR Cancer Disparities Conference. The poster titled “Examining Recollections of Black Women with Breast Cancer Who Participated in Clinical Trials: A Grounded Practical Theory Study of Patient-Provider Communication” was presented during the conference Sept. 16-19 in Philadelphia. Ridley-Merriweather is the communication, recruitment, and outreach manager for the Susan G. Komen Tissue Bank at IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Bright-Well Fund supports IU, IU Health cancer center employees in need of financial assistance

The Bright-Well Fund was established at the IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center to assist IU School of Medicine and IU Health employees experiencing unexpected personal financial distress. If you know of an employee who might benefit, please encourage them to apply for support. The review process for awards and the distribution of Bright-Well Fund support is entirely confidential and is reviewed and adjudicated by a social worker and HR staff. Learn more and apply for support.

CME changes name to reflect current trends in continuing education

Reflecting its current Joint Accreditation status, IU School of Medicine’s Continuing Medical Education division has changed its name to Continuing Education in Healthcare Professions. Read more about this change.

OncLive seeking Giants of Cancer Care nominations

Nominations are now open for the Giants of Cancer Care® program, presented by OncLive®, which recognizes and celebrates the individuals who have achieved landmark successes within the global field of oncology. Giants of Cancer Care® is the premier oncology awards program honoring leaders, selected by their peers, for their remarkable achievements in oncology research and clinical practice. Nominees must hold an M.D., D.O., or Ph.D. Nominations must be submitted by licensed healthcare professionals working in the oncology space. Guidelines and the nomination form are available online.

Upcoming Events

  • Cancer Research Day is Wednesday, Oct. 12, at the IUPUI Campus Center. This event aims to increase understanding and awareness of the IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Cancer's research endeavors and encourage collaboration with other cancer research institutions in Indiana. The full agenda and abstract book are available online. Registration is highly encouraged. 
  • The IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center is again a proud sponsor of Outrun the Sun: Race Against Melanoma, and our Office of Community Outreach and Engagement will be on-site during the evening event on Saturday, Oct. 8. The Race Against Melanoma and Sunset Festival will take place at Lawton Loop, 8838 Otis Ave., in Lawrence. Enjoy live music, food and wine trucks, and more. The family-friendly event includes a timed 5K run, a non-timed 5K run/walk, and a non-timed one-mile fun walk. Help represent the cancer center by joining "Team IU Simon: Research Cures Cancer." The first 10 people to use the code "IUSimon2022" will receive free registration. Join the cancer center team. 
  • The IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center, IU Health and IU School of Medicine Division of Hematology/Oncology are partnering with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s (LLS) Light The Night as a 2022 sponsor and proud corporate team. Light The Night brings light to the darkness of cancer through hope, research and support for patients and families.

    Mohammad Abu Zaid, M.D., is leading the IU Light The Night team on Saturday, Oct. 15. The team’s goal is to reach 25 team members, including employees, family and friends, and raise $15,000.  To join the team, visit. Click “Join A Team” to complete your complimentary registration. If you have any questions, reach out to Jamie Grace at

  • The Second Annual End Lung Cancer Now Gathering is 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 4, at the NCAA Hall of Champions. This Gathering will be a time for everyone from physicians to community leaders to come together and learn how we can work to increase lung scans in Indiana and ultimately save lives. See the full agenda and register.

  • The Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium Summit is Saturday, Nov. 19, in Columbus, Ohio. The summit is open to all senior/junior faculty and fellows involved in clinical oncology research, basic scientists involved in drug discovery and translational research, cancer center leadership and administration, community leaders and patient advocates. Registration is free and open until Oct. 14. See the full agenda and register.

Thomas Imperiale, M.D. (CPC), wrote a journal editorial, “Uptake of Colorectal Cancer Screening Colonoscopy in 45-to-49-year-olds: An Early-Inning View from the Endoscopy Suite,” calling for tailoring colorectal cancer screening for 45-to-49-year-olds. Read the Regenstrief story.


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