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Inroads E-Newsletter

November 2019

Tulane's Inaugural Kidney Cancer Day is dedicated to shining a spotlight on a disease that, according to the American Cancer Society, is among the 10 most common cancers in the U.S.  Patients and their families, Tulane providers, staff, students and members of the New Orleans community interested in learning more are encouraged to attend this free event.


The Section of Hematology and Medical Oncology in the John W. Deming Department of Medicine and the Department of Urology at Tulane will host the Inaugural Kidney Cancer Day on Thursday, December 12, in the Tidewater Diboll Auditorium and Gallery at 1440 Canal St.

The all-day event, sponsored by EMD Serono, is free and open to the public and is designed to raise awareness of this disease that is among the ten most common cancers, affecting one in 48 men and one in 83 women in the U.S., according to the American Cancer Society.

The symposium will kick off with a Patient Journey Session and Panel Discussion, focusing specifically on the impact of diagnosis and treatment on the patient, caregiver and family experience.

"This is the first time an event of this kind has placed the focus on the patient and care-giving family member," said Pedro Barata, MD, assistant professor of medicine. "And it's the first symposium of its kind to be held in Louisiana. We are very excited to bring this innovative event to the New Orleans community."

Kimberly Allman, CNP, a genitourinary nurse practitioner from the Cleveland Clinic – Taussig Cancer Institute, will contribute to the panel discussion, and afterwards, she will present a lecture on the Management of Immune-Related Adverse Events in Clinical Practice.

The program will continue with a series of kidney cancer management lectures by Tulane faculty, including Dr. Barata, Dr. Audrey Dang of Radiation Oncology, Dr. Shams Halat from Pathology, and Drs. Jonathan Silberstein and Spencer Krane from Urology.

Lunch will transition over to The Jung Hotel - 1500 Canal St., NOLA, 70112 - where Dena Battle, co-founder and president of The Kidney Cancer Research Alliance, will deliver her keynote address entitled The Role of Patient Advocacy Groups in Oncology.

Patients and their family members, Tulane providers, staff, students and members of the community interested in learning more about kidney cancer are encouraged to attend, and registration is recommended. Breakfast, lunch and refreshments will be provided.

For more information on Kidney Cancer Day, including a registration link, a list of speakers and topics and a schedule of events, please visit or contact Susana Torres at or 504-988-1236.

Tulane Researcher is Editor of Journal Issue Honoring 40th Anniversary of Key Cancer Discovery

Leading p53 researcher Hua Lu, MB, PhD, of Tulane University School of Medicine, was chosen to edit a special edition of a medical journal dedicated to the history of p53 research. (Story by Carolyn Scofield)

It’s the most important suppressor of growth in cancer tumors and the most intensively studied molecule in biomedical research, yet scientists are still unraveling the mysteries of p53 almost 40 years after its discovery.

Leading p53 researcher Hua Lu, MB, PhD, of Tulane University School of Medicine, was chosen to edit a special edition of the Journal of Molecular Cell Biology dedicated to the history of p53 research. The issue includes articles and perspectives from some of the world’s top research scientists in the field from Princeton’s Institute of Advanced Study, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Johns Hopkins, Columbia, Northwestern, the Weizmann Institute of Science, the Francis Crick Institute, and other universities along with St Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

“It’s a tremendous honor to have one of our Tulane researchers chosen to edit this journal,” says Dr. Lee Hamm, senior vice president and dean of Tulane School of Medicine. “This reflects the breakthroughs Dr. Lu has made in this important field of research.”

Scientists have long known that the p53 protein protects against cancer by triggering cells with DNA damage to self-destruct before they become malignant. The protein also triggers DNA repair processes and cell cycle arrest. P53 is kept in check by two genes, MDM2 and MDMX, which regulate its production and degradation in a negative feedback loop. While overproduction of either the p53 protein or its two suppressors is harmful, with one possible result being the formation of cancer, the balance between both p53 and its suppressors allows for normal cell function, in particular the maintenance of genome integrity.

Lu, professor and Reynolds and Ryan Families Chair in Translational Cancer Research, was honored to lead the effort to commemorate advances of p53 research.

“The more we study p53, the less we know about it,” Lu said. “This special issue of JMCB celebrates the 40th anniversary of p53’s discovery and highlights researchers in the field of cancer, all of whom are pioneering, world-class scientists.”

Lu and his team have recently been looking at how different proteins work to suppress normal p53 function within the cell. One of the proteins, PHLDB3, was thought to be a potential tumor suppressor, but actually allows cancer cells to thrive in the context of pancreatic, prostate, colon, breast, lung, and other cancers. Tulane researchers discovered that PHLDB3 works with MDM2 to inhibit p53, promoting tumor growth. The protein could also cause therapeutic resistance for some late-stage cancers by helping to thwart treatments that work by causing DNA damage to the cancer cell. The other protein of interest is SPIN1, which can promote tumor growth by inactivating p53. The team also discovered how a novel molecular signaling pathway can lead to oncogenic activity of a specific p53 hotspot mutant in the context of liver cancer.

Pickup Truck for the Cure Raffle Extended - Winner to be Pulled June 1, 2020



  • Proceeds benefit Tulane Cancer Center's Prostate Cancer Research Program.
  • One lucky winner will receive the grand prize - a GMC Canyon Pickup.
  • Raffle tickets are $100 each and a maximum of 500 will be sold.
  • Tickets can be purchased via credit card only at
  • The winner will be selected in a random drawing on June 1, 2020, and need not be present to win.

Good luck and thanks for your support!


Previous Issues...

October 2019
Tulane Study Reveals Dim Light at Night May Promote Breast Cancer Metastasis to Bone
Cancer Cells Turn to Cannibalism to Survive Chemotherapy
Tulane School of Medicine Welcomes Neuro-Oncologist Christopher Trevino, MD
Sixth Annual NOLA Bluedoo Raises $143K for Prostate Cancer Research
Cancer Crusaders Support Research/Celebrate Life at Annual Luncheon
Blue Ribbon Soiree Closing in on $1 Million Raised for Prostate Cancer Initiatives
Krewe de Pink Continues Their Support of Breast Cancer Research with $35K Gift

August 2019
Tulane Lakeside Hospital Now Offering 3D Breast Biopsy
16 Tulane Cancer Center Faculty Named "Top Docs" by New Orleans Magazine

July 2019
Flemington Team Awarded $2.3 Million For Virus-Related Malignancies Research
Our Summer Drive is ON!
Bryan Subaru / LLS Distribute Blankets, Art Kits & Messages of Hope to Cancer Patients

May 2019
Win a Truck & Help Cure Prostate Cancer
Researcher's Publication Honored as "Top 100" by Scientific Reports
New Multidisciplinary Prostate Cancer Clinic Enhances Care / Convenience
In the Pink: 4th Annual Pink Bra Run Raises Spirits/Funds for Breast Cancer Research
Cancer Crusaders Raise $171K for Tulane/LSU Cancer Research Programs

April 2019
Researcher Awarded $1.8 Million NCI Grant to Study New Targets for Rare Pediatric Cancer
Meet Us at the Levee: Pink Bra Run to Benefit Breast Cancer Research!
2019 One Man Shoot Continues the Mission - Making a Difference in Fighting Prostate Cancer

March 2019
Exploring "Dark Matter of Genomes" Could Shed Light on Cancer Risk
Joe W. & Dorothy Dorsett Brown Foundation Grant Supports Training of Aspiring Female Scientists
Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month Q & A - "Screening Saves Lives"

February 2019
Improving Access to Care Top Priority for New Genitourinary Cancers Expert
Study Finds Genetic Risks Associated With Prostate Cancer are Underestimated
Greenberg Family Endowment Boosts Fight Against Prostate Cancer
8th Annual One Man Shoot: Proving "One Man Can Make a Difference"
Gunning for a Cure Sets New Record, Raising $220K for Prostate Cancer Research
Tulane Medical Students Raise Money for Pediatric Cancer Research

January 2019
New Gynecologic Oncologist Aims to Reduce Cervical Cancer Rates in NOLA
Tulane Study Finds Potential Role for Personality Psychology in Cancer Care
Sixth Annual Gunning for a Cure Benefits Prostate Cancer Research
Student Athletes Provide Much-Needed Financial Assistance to Cancer Patients

December 2018
Improving Early Prostate Cancer Detection: Latest Technology Combines Imaging/Biopsy Tools to Improve Accuracy of Diagnosis
Advanced Cancer Patients Can Live Longer with Palliative Care, Tulane Study Says
Serve and Assist: Student Athletes Raise Funds for Patient Relief

November 2018
Prostate Cancer Patients Target of New $1.6M Tulane Study
Tulane Opens Novocure Trial for Patients with Stage 4 Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
The Great American Smokeout ® - Quitting Starts Here!
8th Annual Blue Ribbon Soiree Sets Record, Raising $130K for Prostate Cancer Research
Krewe de Pink Celebrates New Orleans-Style, Donating $35K to Breast Cancer Research!

October 2018
Researcher Examines Role of DNA-Damaging Elements in Aging/Age-Related Diseases
Lynch Syndrome Can Lead to Cancer — Why Physicians Don't Test For It
Fifth NOLA Bluedoo a Record-Setting Success - Raises $193K for Prostate Cancer Research

August 2018
Tulane Cancer Center to Host Free Prostate Cancer Seminar
Fifth Annual NOLA Bluedoo Celebrates Prostate Cancer Survivorship New Orleans-Style
Tulane Doctor Elected to Elite Surgery College

July 2018
Tulane Welcomes Kendra Harris, MD, MSc - New Interim Chair of Radiation Oncology
Nakhle Saba Receives Ladies Leukemia League Grant to Study New Target for ALL
Bryan Subaru & LLS Bring Comfort to Patients Through Subaru Loves to Care Initiative

June 2018
Repurposed Drug Approach May Halt Spread of Cancer Cells
Tulane Head and Neck Experts Lead Call for HPV Vaccines
American Cancer Society Updates Colorectal Cancer Screening Guidelines

May 2018
Tulane Cancer Center Now Offering Imaging Tool to Detect Recurring Prostate Cancer
Grant Supports Smoking Cessation Education for Outpatient Mental Health Facilities
It's All About the Pink - Third Annual Pink Bra Run Supports Breast Cancer Research
Cancer Crusaders Donate $169,000 to Tulane/LSU Cancer Research Programs

April 2018
Grant Supports Smoking Cessation Program for Newly Diagnosed Cancer Patients
Med Student Takes Top Honors at Recent Meeting
State Rep. Julie Stokes to Lead 3rd Annual Pink Bra 5K Fun Run
7th Annual One Man Shoot Raises $130,000 for Prostate Cancer Research
Grant Supports Smoking Cessation Program For Newly Diagnosed Cancer Patients

March 2018
Researcher Explores Unique Genetic Mutation Associated with Liver Cancer
Healing Hands Across the Divide: Evolving to Address Cancer Disparities
Gunning for a Cure Raises $192K for Prostate Cancer Research

February 2018
Tulane Oncologist Outlines Prostate Cancer Treatment Advances in New England Journal of Medicine
Pink Games raise money — and hope — for patients fighting cancer

May 25, 2017
Prostate Cancer Immunotherapy Works Better for African-American Men
Cancer Crusaders Present Check for $210K
Free Skin Cancer Screenings Offered at Downtown Dermatology Clinic
National Cancer Survivor's Day
Celebration Planned
Second Annual Pink Bra Run -
Great Fun for a Great Cause

April 25, 2017
"Scarless Thyroid Surgery" on Agenda at Thyroid/Parathyroid & Skin Malignancies Symposia
Free Skin Cancer Screenings Offered at Covington Clinic
Second Annual Pink Bra Run Scheduled for Mother's Day Weekend

April 11, 2017
Tulane Researcher Shows Education Can Ease Fear in Cancer Patients
Thanks A Million!

March 10, 2017
Komen Grant Supports Study of Ductal Carcinoma In Situ
One Man Can Make a Difference: 6th Annual One Man Shoot Takes Aim at Prostate Cancer
2017 Gunning for a Cure Fundraiser Exceeds $500,000 Goal!

February 16, 2017
Leading Study Backs Hormone Therapy With Radiation for Recurrent Prostate Cancer
Victory Bell: Donation Helps Cancer Patients Celebrate Survivorship

February 3, 2017
Genetic Counselors Help Patients Better Understand Inherited Cancer Risk
Perez Family Targets Prostate Cancer Through Sporting Clays Event

January 26, 2017
Tulane Researchers Find Tumor-Suppressing Protein Actually Promotes Cancer
Tickled Pink: Local Student Athletes Assist Breast Cancer Patients