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Tang named CI director of clinical and translational research

Published on Tuesday, November 21, 2017

By: Cynthia Wall

Dr. Shou-Ching Tang has joined the University of Mississippi Medical Center Cancer Institute as associate director of Clinical and Translational Research and professor of Medicine and Pharmacology /Toxicology.

Portrait of Dr. Shou-Ching Tang

“My interest here is to make a push for precision medicine,” he said. “We want to tailor immunotherapy to an individual’s tumor.”

Whole genome sequencing makes it possible to sequence or search an individual’s DNA and then find specific mutations. Those mutations provide possible treatment targets.

He’ll be involved in helping start the CI Interdisciplinary Molecular Tumor Board. “Everybody seen at that board is sequenced and we try to find that drug nationwide or worldwide that works for them.”

Those drugs may not be on the market but may be offered in clinical studies at UMMC or elsewhere.

Tang also will work with CI researchers in Jackson and at the University of Mississippi in Oxford to move their findings into Phase 1 trials.

“Dr. Tang brings the unique credentials of a physician scientist who can bridge the gap between the rapidly evolving science of genomic based medicine and the needs of patients with cancer,” said Dr. John Ruckdeschel, Cancer Institute director. “We are very excited to have him join us.”

Tang’s work will focus on implementing a Phase I clinical trials program in cancer and in attracting patients to clinical trials in other phases.

He calls the CI Drug Discovery Core at the National Center for Natural Products at Ole Miss “a goldmine.”

“They have several homegrown drugs ready to be tested in clinical trials,” he said.

Tang, internationally known for his breast cancer research, comes to UMMC from the Georgia Cancer Center at Augusta University. He holds a medical degree from West China University of Medical Sciences in Chengdu, Sichuan, China, and a doctorate in molecular biology from the Division of Medical Oncology at University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.

He completed an internship at Misericordia Hospital in Edmonton; a residency in internal medicine at University of Alberta, Edmonton and a fellowship in medical oncology at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Since 2013, he has led the Breast Cancer Multidisciplinary Team at Augusta University; been co-leader of the Breast Cancer Interdisciplinary Translational Research Team; and leader of the Solid Tumor Clinical Trial Working Group. 

He has served as principal investigator or co-PI on multiple national and international clinical trials.

Tang helped found Breast Cancer International Research Group that seeks to bring more effective therapies to breast cancer patients.

He’s also served as a member of Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group and Southwest Oncology Group committees. Tang also has presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology.

Past appointments include scientific advisor for the U.S. Oncology Research; associate cancer center director for Clinical Research at the University of Miami Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center.