Welcome to the Department of Radiation Oncology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. Our mission is to provide the highest quality care to patients with all types of cancers and certain benign tumors. The department aims to achieve excellence in professionalism and performance of our services. We seek to create a climate that fosters innovation and allows patients access to the newest cutting edge treatments.
The Department of Radiation Oncology is integrated within the award-winning, nationally celebrated University of Colorado Hospital, within the larger University of Colorado Health system. The University of Colorado Cancer Center is a National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center.
In The News...
8/14/17 - Rabinovitch and Liu recognized as Top Doctors again!
were once again recognized by 5280 magazine in the annual list of were once again recognized by 5280 magazine in the annual list of Top Doctors
in Denver. Each has received this distinction multiple times previously in view of their commitment to excellence in patient care and outstanding clinical skills. Dr. Rabinovitch is nationally and internationally known for her work in the treatment of breast cancer, serving at the lead investigator on numerous important clinical trials initiated locally and nationally through National Cancer Institute-sponsored NRG Oncology Group. She also maintains a long-standing collaboration with colleagues at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem, Israel, the leading center for the study of women with the BRCA gene mutation. Dr. Liu specializes in the treatment of pediatric cancers. Among his many responsibilities is service on the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) Institutional Performance Monitoring Committee as well as the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) Practice Accreditation Committee. He also serves as the Chief Medical Advisor to the Morgan Adams Foundation, which funds pediatric cancer research aimed at improving survival rates and reduce the side-effects cancer treatment.
8/10/17 - Radiation Oncology Department Welcomes Dr. Sameer Nath
Dr. Sameer (Sam)
Nath has recently joined the faculty of the Department of Radiation Oncology. Dr. Nath received his MD and a Master’s Degree in Clinical Research at the University of California San Diego in 2010. He continued his training in Radiation Oncology at Yale University School of Medicine, where he served as chief resident prior to joining the faculty in 2015. At Yale, Dr. Nath specialized in malignancies of the thorax, genitourinary tract, head and neck, and also developed expertise in radiosurgery. Dr. Nath is a dedicated clinical researcher and has published over 30 peer-reviewed articles and textbook chapters. His research interests include identifying novel biomarkers, exploring health outcomes data, and developing advanced imaging and treatment techniques for radiotherapy patients. He also served as Associate Program Director of the Radiation Oncology residency and Faculty Advisor of the medical student interest group. Outside of work, Dr. Nath enjoys playing soccer and spending time with his two young boys, Jack and Max, and his wife, Dr. Alison Sheridan, who is a radiologist also joining the faculty at the University of Colorado in the Body Radiology section.
4/24/17 - Karam awarded RSNA grant
Dr. Sana Karam and
her lab team have been awarded a grant from the Board of Trustees of the
Radiological Society of North America (RSNA). The project that will be
supported, entitled “
Combined Inhibition of EphB4 and EGFR Signaling
Enhances Radiosensitization in Head and Neck Cancers”, will focus on novel
mechanisms of interaction between radiation and the Eph family of ligands and receptors, an area in which Dr. Karam has become a
leading expert. “I am excited that we will have an opportunity to fill in a few
important gaps in our understanding of the best way to combine radiation and
certain new agents in head and neck cancer,” says Dr. Karam. “We are moving
very close to a point where we will be able to offer this type of combination
to patients in clinical trials, and I think there is reason to expect we can
improve tumor cure rates for certain groups of patients."
4/21/17 - Alexeev wins AAPM Junior Investigator Competition
Dr. Timur Alexeev, a
post-doctoral fellow of the Medical Physics section, has been selected as the
winner of the Junior Investigator Competition of the American Association of
Physicists in Medicine (AAPM) Annual Meeting for his abstract, “Development and
Evaluation of a Two Dimensional Antiscatter Grid for CBCT”. The work was
accomplished under the supervision of Dr. Cem Altunbas, who is principal
investigator of an NIH R21-funded project addressing the challenges of how to
improve cone-beam CT scanning (CBCT), an imaging technique relied upon heavily
for high precision image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT). “Dr. Alexeev’s
work has demonstrated important fundamental principles in this study and
established that our grid technique improves image quality,” notes Dr. Altunbas,
who adds, “and this work lays a foundation for implementing the new techniques
in the clinic in the near future."
2/15/17 - Robin’s Research
Cited in New York Times Article on Disparities
recent publication authored by Dr. Tyler Robin, PGY-3, Department of Radiation
Oncology, has received national attention. The article, “Disparities
in standard of care treatment and associated survival decrement in patients
with locally advanced cervical cancer”, was cited in a New
York Times article addressing disparities in cervical cancer treatment.
Christine Fisher commented, “Dr. Robin's study revealed a very important
and concerning point. Fewer than half of patients with locally advanced cervix
cancer receive appropriate standard therapy for their cancer, which should
include both external beam radiotherapy and brachytherapy. Patients were more
likely to receive substandard therapy if they had lower incomes, only Medicaid
insurance, or treatment outside of a comprehensive cancer center. We hope that
by illuminating the problem we can educate patients and providers outside of
major centers that referral to a comprehensive cancer center like ours is
important if the appropriate expertise and technology for proper treatment is
unavailable locally. Cervix cancer can be challenging to treat but is
potentially curable, and it is important that the oncology community rallies to
the support of the vulnerable populations of patients who need access to
standard care. Our ultimate hope is for elimination of cervical cancer
through vaccination and screening, but, until then, access to best care is
critically important for cervix cancer patients.
of the study included Dr. Arya Amini, PGY-5, Department of Radiation Oncology; Dr.
Tracey Schefter, Department of Radiation Oncology; and Dr. Kian Behbahkt,
Director of Gynecologic Oncology.
1/27/17 - Stokes selected for prestigious reviewer apprenticeship program
Dr. William Stokes has been selected into the Reviewer Apprenticeship Program of the journal Practical Radiation Oncology, one of the three official journals of the American Society for Radiation Oncology. Dr. Stokes was among the 6 residents chosen from among nearly 100 applicants from across the United States to participate in the inaugural year of the program. In his role in this initiative, Dr. Stokes will review at least six papers over the next twelve months and will receive individual mentorship and feedback from the journal editors.
12/1/16 - Burr awarded GME Training Administrator Certification
Jennifer Burr, C-TAGME, now current Office
Manager, has recently completed the National Board for Certification for
Training Administrators for Graduate Medical Education Programs (TAGME). Jenn
has served for 11 years as the Radiation Oncology Residency Program
Coordinator, a GME-certified training program. The residency program began in
2003 and has now produced 18 graduates who have moved on to positions in
community and academic practice
9/6/16 - Lanning joins lab and clinic teams at UCH
Ryan Lanning, MD, PhD, joins the faculty of the Department of
Radiation Oncology this month. Dr. Lanning attended the University of
California-Irvine on a Regents Scholarship, receiving a BS in Chemistry and
Biology. He worked for a year in the Beckman Laser Institute and Medical Clinic
as an optical engineer, where he played a key role in the development of
frequency domain photon migration spectroscopy. He then began an MD-PhD program
at Harvard Medical School and MIT, where he worked in the Edwin L. Steele
Laboratories under the tutelage of Dr. Rakesh Jain. His thesis was entitled “Tumor
vasculature and microenvironment during progression and treatment: insights
from optical microscopy”. He was the recipient of several awards during
this period including a Whitaker Foundation Fellowship a DoD Pre-Doctoral
Training Fellowship. After an internship in Internal Medicine at the Brigham
and Women’s Hospital, he completed a residency in Radiation Oncology at
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, where he continued his translational
scientific work alongside his clinical training. By means of a technology
dissemination grant, Dr. Lanning’s laboratory will provide the Cancer Center
with an entirely new modality of non-invasive, real-time tumor physiology and
vessel architecture monitoring with broad applicability for studies across the
spectrum of solid tumors. Dr. Lanning’s clinical focus will be in the treatment
of Head and Neck Cancers, just in time for the launch of the new HNC
7/1/16 - Ridings named "Top Doc" once again
Jane Ridings has once again been named a “top doc” by Colorado Springs Style magazine. Dr. Ridings is the Medical Director of
Radiation Oncology at Memorial Hospital in the University of Colorado Health
System. She has earned this distinction for several years in a row as a result
of her outstanding service in cancer care to the Colorado Springs Community.
She has led numerous innovative clinical initiatives at Memorial, including an
intra-operative radiation therapy (IORT) program for early stage breast cancer. The 2015 list can be seen here.
6/13/16 - Jones named Boettcher Investigator; Awarded research grant
Dr. Bernard L. Jones
has recently been named a Boettcher Investigator in the Webb-Waring
Biomedical Research Awards program. These awards support
promising, early-career scientific researchers, allowing them to advance their
independent research while competing for major federal and private awards. Dr. Jones will receive a $235,000 grant to support research on
improving motion management and planning/delivery techniques in pancreatic SBRT