Rafal Dziadziuszko, MD, PhD
The European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) and the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) awarded the 2017 Heine H. Hansen Award to Rafal Dziadziuszko, MD, PhD, at the European Lung Cancer Conference (ELCC) 2017, which was held May 5–8 in Geneva, Switzerland.
The Heine H. Hansen Award recognizes the lifetime contributions of Heine H. Hansen, MD, PhD, FRCP, to global lung cancer research and education. Dr. Hansen was President of ESMO, a founder of IASLC, and a mentor to many in the field of lung cancer. The Heine H. Hansen Award is presented annually by representatives of both organizations at the ELCC meeting, where the recipient gives a keynote lecutre. It acknowledges a lung cancer investigator who has made a special contribution to lung cancer research and education on an international basis.
Dr. Dziadziuszko is currently Deputy Head and National Consultant in Radiation Oncology in the Department of Oncology and Radiotherapy as well as Professor, at the Medical University of Gdansk. He is a member of ESMO—and was the ESMO National Representative for Poland from 2009 to 2011—and is a member of IASLC.
Training and Research Interests
Dr. Dziadziuszko completed his training in radiotherapy and medical oncology at the Department of Oncology and Radiotherapy, Medical University of Gdansk. He subsequently completed a translational cancer research fellowship at the University of Colorado Cancer Center, which was funded by IASLC and the International Union Against Cancer. There, he worked on predictive assays for epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-targeted therapies in lung cancer, including immunohistochemistry, gene copy number, and activating mutations.
Dr. Dziadziuszko’s main interests are lung cancer translational and clinical research, and he is a coauthor of more than 120 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on this topic. He has helped organize several academic clinical research studies in Poland and Central Europe and is Vice Chairman of the Central and East European Oncology Group. His current work includes identification of novel molecular targets for early lung cancer trials, evaluation of novel radiotherapy strategies in thoracic malignancies, and research on lung cancer screening programs.
Commenting on the importance of the award, Dr. Dziadziuszko said: “I met Heine Hansen on several occasions early in my career when he participated in events in Poland and Central-Eastern Europe to motivate us to join pan-European collaboration. This was before the Iron Curtain and shortly after, when access to international research projects was limited. He believed our region needed to be fully integrated with European lung cancer research and motivated young oncologists to broaden their research capabilities. I feel I am one of his followers to realize this task.”
Dr. Dziadziuszko concluded: “This honor is recognition for our lung cancer group of physicians and allied health-care professionals in Gdansk and Poland. Together we have created a team focused on improvement of patient-centered practice with strong emphasis on translational and clinical research. The award motivates us to be more active and to further improve our performance.” ■