International Mesothelioma Interest Group Announces New Officers
International Mesothelioma Interest Group (IMIG), an independent international group of scientists and clinicians working to understand, cure and prevent mesothelioma, announced their new officers for the 2010-2012 term. Steven Mutsaers, PhD, was unanimously selected to serve as president. Mutsaers has served as Secretary of IMIG since 1997.
IMIG holds yearly conferences and other meetings where physicians and scientists share their latest findings towards new approaches for treating mesothelioma, detecting the disease at an early stage or to finding a cure. Mesothelioma, primarily caused by exposure to airborne asbestos fibers, is a highly aggressive cancer and is resistant to many standard cancer treatments.
Mutsaers, Associate Professor, Senior Research Scientist and Research Group Leader at the Lung Institute of Western Australia (LIWA) and Centre for Asthma, Allergy and Respiratory Research, School of Medicine and Pharmacology, University of Western Australia (UWA), has focused his research on examining modulators of mesothelioma growth, examining matrix regulation in serosal repair, adhesion formation, lung fibrosis and examining diagnostic markers of disease with a strong emphasis on mesothelioma.
His current research includes examining the role of interleukin-6 family molecules and signaling pathways regulating malignant mesothelioma growth. According to IMIG, Mutsaers serves on several national and international scientific committees and granting bodies, has numerous national and international collaborations, is regularly invited to speak at international meetings on mesothelial cell biology, is an international advisor on the International Pleural Newsletter and is a member of the Western Australia Virtual Respiratory Centre Editorial Advisory Board. He is also a scientific board member of the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (MARF).
Mutsaers replaces Hedy Lee Kindler, MD, who served as president since 2006. Kindler is Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of the Mesothelioma Program at the University of Chicago Medical Center. The University of Chicago has been a pioneer in the study and treatment of malignant mesothelioma for over 20 years. Kindler, who is internationally known for her research on therapies that target the unique biology of mesothelioma, has written nearly 50 scientific articles and is a member of the editorial board of BioOncology Watch and serves as a reviewer for many cancer journals.
The other officers named are secretary, Jeremy P. Steele, M.D., Co-Director of St. Bartholomew Hospital’s Mesothelioma Research, London, and treasurer, Sam Armato III, PhD, Associate Professor of Radiology at the University of Chicago Medical Center.