President Barack Obama recently appointed a physician-scientist in the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute (UPCI), partner with UPMC CancerCenter, to a national board charged with identifying the most promising cancer research projects nationwide.
Yuan Chang, M.D., Distinguished Professor of Pathology in Pitt’s School of Medicine, has been appointed with four other scientists to serve as members of the National Cancer Advisory Board.
“I am honored that these talented individuals have decided to serve our country. They bring their years of experience and expertise to this administration, and I look forward to working with them,” President Obama said in announcing the appointments.
The National Cancer Advisory Board consists of 18 members appointed by the president to advise the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) National Cancer Institute. The members review applications for grants and cooperative agreements for cancer research and training, and recommend approval of the projects that show the most promise of making valuable contributions to human knowledge.
“This is a great opportunity for me to professionally contribute to the directive of the National Institutes of Health,” said Dr. Chang, also UPCI Chair of Cancer Virology. “My goal is to bring my basic research expertise on infectious diseases and cancer to inform the administrative goals of the NIH.”
Dr. Chang joined the Pitt School of Medicine in 2002, after she and Patrick S. Moore, M.D., M.P.H. , discovered Kaposi’s sarcoma-associated herpesvirus, which causes Kaposi’s sarcoma, the most common malignancy occurring in AIDS patients. The team then went on to discover Merkel cell polyomavirus, which causes a rare but deadly skin cancer.
Dr. Chang earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Stanford University and a medical doctorate from the University of Utah College of Medicine.
Prior to coming to Pitt, Dr. Chang served in several clinical and academic positions from 1993 to 2002 at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgery and Columbia Presbyterian Hospital. Before that she was a clinical instructor at Stanford University Medical Center.