Our Vision

ABBCI will be a Penn Medicine regional cancer center that is a recognized place to go for research and precision medicine. We will provide seamless university-level care with our Penn colleagues in our community setting.

The ABBCI and Penn’s Abramson Cancer Center have jointly developed our cancer research vision and development plan, the foundation of which has been completed and implemented. Special thanks to Dr. Samuel Kerr, ABBCI’s Lead Physician for Cancer Research; Dr. Robert Vonderheide, Director of the Abramson Cancer Center; and Dr. Lawrence Shulman, Deputy Director for Clinical Services, Abramson Cancer Center.

Dr. Vonderheide notes, “Providing clinical trials for patients is mission critical. We must further increase treatment trial accrual and the scope of trials offered at the ABBCI and to Lancaster patients.” Dr. Kerr states that our programs will “expand our clinical trial portfolios, including more industry trials that offer exciting new treatments and answer important questions.”

Dr. Ray Foley, President, Physician Services, has added that clinical research is a priority for the ABBCI and for all of LG Health. We know that it is a priority for our patients.

In this edition of the newsletter, please read about your colleagues and their recent research work. Thank you to our researchers for helping us prepare the future of cancer care!

ABBCI cancer researchers, authors and presenters

Please note that many of the researchers, authors and presenters listed below worked with a team of individuals on their projects. For the sake of brevity, only ABBCI team members are listed here.

ABBCI beam signing

Kenneth Berkenstock, Kenneth Blank, Pamela Boimel, Kishor Singapuri and Sriram Venigalla: “NRG LU002, SBRT for oligo-metastatic lung cancer,” now enrolling patients

Hong F. Xiang, Kishor P. Singapuri, Sujatha Pai and Kenneth R. Blank were part of a team that presented “Constraining Rectal Dose to Attain Higher Dose Coverage to Prostate Volumes in Robotic SBRT Using Hydrogel Spacer for Low- and Intermediate-Risk Prostate Cancer,” at RSNA 2019 in Chicago.

Samuel Kerr: “Nivolumab and Ipilumumab + 2 cycles of platinum-doublet chemotherapy vs 4 cycles chemotherapy as first-line treatment for stage IV/recurrent NSCLC,” ASCO Annual Meeting, June 6, 2020, enrolled patients

Samuel Kerr: “Durvalumab Alone or in Combination with Novel Agents in Subjects With NSCLC (COAST),” ongoing, enrolling patients

David Cziperle: “Avitene Microfibrillar Collagen Hemostat for Adjunctive Hemostasis in Surgical Procedures: A Systematic Literature Review,” submitted to Journal of Medical Devices: Evidence and Research, October 2020

David Cziperle: “Progress in Thoracic Surgery:  Its Effect on Clinical Practice and Residency Training,” Journal Lancaster General Hospital, Vol. 15, Issue 1

Caitlyn McNaughton: “Anticancer therapy at the end of life: lessons from a community cancer institute,” Palliative and Supportive care in Oncology Symposium 2018, poster

Caitlyn McNaughton: “Patterns of support service, emergency department and hospital utilization in patients with advanced cancer: a descriptive study,” Annual Assembly of Hospice and Palliative Medicine 2018, poster

Ami Jhaveri: NRG-BR004: “A Randomized, Double-Blind, Phase III Trial of Paclitaxel/Trastuzumab/Pertuzumab with Atezolizumab or Placebo in First-Line Her2-Positive Metastatic Breast Cancer,” PI

Ami Jhaveri: “ImPassion030 AFT/Genetech: A Phase III, Multicenter, Randomized, Open-Label Study Comparing Atezolizumab (ANTI-PD-L1 Antibody) in Combination with Adjuvant Anthracycline/Taxane-Based Chemotherapy versus Chemotherapy Alone in Patients with Operable Triple-Negative Breast Cancer,” PI

Sriram Venigalla: “The association of health insurance status with presentation, treatment and outcomes in soft tissue sarcoma,” Cancer Med, Oct. 2019

Sriram Venigalla: “Association of Age with Efficacy of Immunotherapy in Metastatic Melanoma,” Oncologist, Feb. 2020

Sriram Venigalla: “Low Rates of Chemotherapy Use for Primary, High-Grade Soft Tissue Sarcoma: A National Cancer Database Analysis,” J Natl Compr Canc Netw, Aug. 2020

Sriram Venigalla: “Association of Insurance Status with Presentation, Treatment, and Survival in Melanoma in the Era of Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors,” J Immunother, Jan. 2020

Shanthi Sivendran: “Including the Oncologist in Palliative Oncology: A Response to Nature of Discussions about Systemic Therapy Discontinuation or Hospice among Patients, Families, and Palliative Care Clinicians during Care for Incurable Cancer: A Qualitative Study,” J Palliat Med., 2020

Shanthi Sivendran: “Models of Outpatient Palliative Care Clinics for Patients with Cancer,” J Oncol Practice, April 2019

Shanthi Sivendran, Caitlyn McNaughton, Rachel Holliday, Randall Oyer: “Anticancer Therapy at the End of Life: Lessons from a Community Cancer Institute,” J Palliative Care, Jun 2019

Caitlyn McNaughton, Shanthi Sivendran, Rachel Holliday: “Patterns of Support Service, Emergency Department, and Hospital Utilization in Patients with Advanced Cancer: A Descriptive Study,” J Palliat Care, Jan. 2020

Shanthi Sivendran and Elizabeth Horenkamp, “Implementation of the Institute of Medicine treatment plan in oncology practice” (Submitted)

Shanthi Sivendran, “Corneal Endothelial Cell Density in Patients Receiving Chemotherapy” (Submitted)

Shanthi Sivendran, “Oncologist In My Pocket: Oncology for the palliative provider,” American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine 2019, Oral Presentation      

Shanthi Sivendran, Caitlyn McNaughton, Elizabeth Horenkamp, “Palliative Oncology Tumor Board: Implementation and Impact on Hospitalized Patients with Cancer,” State of Science - AAHPM 2020, poster presentation

Pamela Boimel: “Adaptive Sparsity Regularization Based Collaborative Clustering for Cancer Prognosis,” Med Image Comput Comput Assist Interv. 2019

Pamela Boimel: “Robust Collaborative Clustering of Subjects and Radiomic Features for Cancer Prognosis,” IEEE Trans Biomed Eng. 2020



Pamela Boimel: “A study of positioning orientation effect on segmentation accuracy using convolutional neural networks for rectal cancer,” J Appl Clin Med Phys. 2019 Jan

Nik Buescher, Elizabeth Horenkamp, Randall Oyer: “The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Oncology Care Model Halfway Through: Perspectives from Diverse Participants,” J Natl Cancer Inst, Aug. 2019

Randall Oyer: “Developing and Sustaining an Effective and Resilient Oncology Careforce: Opportunities for Action,” J Natl Cancer Inst. 2020 Jul 1

Nandi Reddy, Randall Oyer: “DPYD and UGT1A1 pharmacogenetic testing in patients with gastrointestinal malignancies: an overview of the evidence and considerations for clinical implementation,” Pharmacotherapy. 2020 Sep 28

Randall Oyer: “An Optimal Care Coordination Model (OCCM) for Medicaid Patients With Lung Cancer: Finalization of the Model and Implications for Clinical Practice in the United States,” Abstract 104, ASCO Quality Symposium, Oct. 9, 2020

Randall Oyer: “An Optimal Care Coordination Model (OCCM) for Medicaid Patients With Lung Cancer: Results From the Beta Model Testing Phase of a Multisite Initiative in the United States,” Abstract 105, ASCO Quality Symposium, Oct. 9, 2020

Randall Oyer: “ASCO-ACCC RFI: Novel Strategies and Practical Solutions to Increase Participation of Racial and Ethnic Minority Populations in Cancer Treatment,” July 21, 2020

Erin Buckwalter: “Evidence-based research for the treatment of head and neck cancer-related dysphagia,” accepted for publication in PSHA Journal December 2020

Hong F. Xiang: “CyberKnife VOLO Experience at Penn Medicine LGH,” Invited Presentation, AERO Academy at ASTRO 2019, Sept. 15, 2019

Erin E. Medlin: “Obstructive Sleep Apnea and the Impact on Surgical Outcomes in Gynecology,” Review Obstet Gynecol Surv 2018 Apr

Erin E. Medlin: “Preoperative obstructive sleep apnea screening in gynecologic oncology patients,” Observational Study Am J Obstet Gynecol, 2018 Aug

Erin E. Medlin: “Multicenter Study Brachytherapy: The role of radiation therapy in the treatment of Stage II endometrial cancer: A large database study,” Jul-Aug 2018

Erin E. Medlin: “Neoadjuvant chemotherapy is associated with a high rate of perioperative blood transfusion at the time of interval cytoreductive surgery,” BMC Cancer, 2018 Oct 26

Erin E. Medlin: “The Safety and Feasibility of Gynecologic Cancer Surgery Combined With Surgery for Pelvic Floor Dysfunction,” Female Pelvic Med Reconstr Surg., 2020 Sep

Erin E. Medlin: “Use of cannabinoids in cancer patients: A Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) clinical practice statement,” Gynecol Oncol. 2020 May

Sujatha Pai: “Electronic intracavitary brachytherapy quality management based on risk analysis: The report of AAPM TG 182,” AAPM Scientific Report, Nov. 8, 2019

Sujatha Pai and Radiation Team: On Sept. 28, the Cyber-Knife at LG Health was dosimetrically credentialed for participating RTOG/NRG clinical trials under lung SBRT protocols where Monte Carlo plan dose calculations are required.

research nurses Krista Budzik Susan Tollett

Many thanks to our research nurses and program founders Krista Budzik (left) and Susan Tollett (right).

The entire ABBCI Research Team thanks the following generous, visionary donors, who have advised us and provided funding for the ABBCI research program: The Seraph Foundation Inc., Ann B. Barshinger, Margaret J. Neff and Earl Furman.

Please click here for a list of our current oncology clinical trials.

We will continue to focus on research, clinical trials accrual and publications. This is of great interest to us, important for moving medical science forward, and essential to our patients and our referring physicians. Thank you!

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