New cancer center director welcomed
A reception honoring new UT Health Cancer Center Director Ruben A. Mesa, M.D., was held Sept. 14. Dr. Mesa began his post in August.
The event was hosted by President William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP; Ron Rodriguez, M.D., Ph.D., interim dean of the Joe R. & Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine; and Department of Medicine Chair W. Brian Reeves, M.D.
Previously, Dr. Mesa was professor of medicine and chair of the Division of Hematology & Medical Oncology at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona and deputy director of the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center. He has been a principal investigator or co-principal investigator of more than 70 clinical trials for patients and has led efforts in obtaining U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for several new cancer drugs.
Dr. Mesa earned his bachelor of science degree in nuclear engineering and physiology, with minors in radiation biophysics and bioengineering, from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He received his medical degree, completed his residency in internal medicine and fulfilled his fellowship in hematology/medical oncology from the Mayo Graduate School at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine in Rochester, Minn. He is a fellow of the American College of Physicians and is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine in internal medicine and medical oncology.
He began his career in 1991 at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, where he worked for 18 years before moving eight years ago to the Mayo Clinic in Arizona as chairman of the Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology. During that time, the division doubled its number of physicians, allied health staff and advanced-practice nurse practitioners, while quadrupling its patient care activities and research funding. He was named deputy director of the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center in 2012.
The organization developed Arizona’s largest stem cell transplant program, brought in state-of-the art proton-beam therapy and maintains the broadest and deepest clinical trial portfolio for cancer patients in the state. During that time, the Arizona Mayo campus became a partner organization of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network and Association of American Cancer Institutes.
Dr. Mesa has been involved in MPN research for more than 20 years. He serves as chair of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network’s panel that published the first U.S. guidelines on the diagnosis and treatment of myelofibrosis in the Journal of the National Cancer Center Network in the fall of 2016. He presented the new guidelines at the NCCN’s Annual Congress: Hematologic Malignancies, last fall.
With more than 300 peer-reviewed scientific publications, Dr. Mesa has been principal investigator or co-principal investigator of more than 70 clinical trials for patients with MPN or other myeloid disorders.