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Medical Oncology Division Director, Associate Director for Clinical Research Appointed

June 26, 2017

Weijing Sun named Medical Oncology Division Director and Associate Director for Clinical Research at The University of Kansas Cancer CenterAfter a national search, The University of Kansas Cancer Center and the University of Kansas School of Medicine have appointed Weijing Sun, M.D., the new Sprint Foundation Professor of Medical Oncology and medical oncology division director. He also will be associate director for clinical research for the KU Cancer Center. He will join the faculty September 1, 2017. 

"We are pleased that Dr. Weijing Sun will join us to lead our Medical Oncology Division," said Robert D. Simari, M.D., executive dean for the University of Kansas School of Medicine. "Dr. Sun is a prolific physician, researcher and educator, and we look forward to his leadership in the Department of Internal Medicine as well as in The University of Kansas Cancer Center.” 

Roy Jensen, M.D., The University of Kansas Cancer Center director, was instrumental in recruiting Sun to come to Kansas. “Dr. Sun is an outstanding physician, clinical investigator and an international expert in gastrointestinal oncology,” he said. “He also will play a key role in further enhancing our clinical research efforts as the associate director for clinical research for the KU Cancer Center, where he will be charged with overseeing our entire portfolio of support and infrastructure for our clinical investigators.” 

This professorship was funded through a lead gift from the Sprint Foundation, with additional support from the Hall Family Foundation. “The Sprint Foundation is proud to support The University of Kansas Cancer Center and the important work it does,” said Debby Ballard, president of the Sprint Foundation. “Dr. Sun is an outstanding addition to the cancer center’s world-class faculty and we look forward to welcoming him to Kansas City.” 

Sun is currently professor of medicine and medical oncologist at the University of Pittsburgh where he also serves as director of the gastrointestinal cancers section of hematology-oncology and co-director of the UPMC Gastrointestinal Cancer Center of Excellence. Sun is also the director of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Experiment Therapeutics Clinical Trials Network for the Pennsylvania Cancer Consortium at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute. Sun is deputy editor-in-chief of the Journal of Hematology and Oncology and associate editor of the Journal of Practical Oncology (China). 

Sun, who specializes in the treatment of gastrointestinal cancers, has authored numerous journal articles and has served as the primary investigator of a wide range of clinical trials. He also is board-certified in internal medicine and in medical oncology. 

Sun serves on the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Education Program, has served on the ASCO Scientific Program and Membership Committee and also is a member of ASCO, the American Association of Cancer Research, and the ECOG-ACRIN Cancer Research Group, Gastrointestinal Cancer Core Committee. He is a member of the NCI Gastrointestinal Cancer Steering Committee Hepatobiliary Task Force and he has been recognized on U.S. News & World Report’s American Top Doctors list

“It is my greatest honor to accept the position,” Sun said. “It is my privilege to have a chance to work in this prestigious university, the outstanding health system, NCI-designated cancer center and with this superb faculty and staff. As a new member of KU Cancer Center, I will work with our colleagues to continue to bring our cancer research and patient care to the top of the nation in this era of precision medicine.” 

Sun earned his medical degree from Shanghai Medical University, now Fudan University, in Shanghai, China. He completed a Master of Science in immunology and microbiology at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He was a post-doctoral research scientist at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He completed his residency in internal medicine at Loyola University Medical Center and he served his hematology-oncology fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. He also has been honored as a fellow of the American College of Physicians – Internal Medicine. 

 Sun will succeed Gary Doolittle, M.D., who has served as interim division director.

The University of Kansas Cancer Center The University of Kansas Cancer Center is transforming cancer research and clinical care by linking an innovative approach to drug discovery, delivery and development to a nationally-accredited patient care program. The partnership includes cancer research and healthcare professionals associated with the University of Kansas Medical Center and The University of Kansas Health System; the University of Kansas, Lawrence; The Stowers Institute for Medical Research; Children’s Mercy Hospital; and in partnership with members of the Midwest Cancer Alliance

University of Kansas Medical Center 
The University of Kansas Medical Center’s mission is to educate exceptional health care professionals through a full range of undergraduate, graduate, professional, postdoctoral and continuing education programs in the schools of Medicine, Nursing and Health Professions. KU Medical Center also advances the health sciences through world-class research programs; provides compassionate and state-of-the-art patient care in an academic medical center environment; and works with communities in every Kansas county to improve the health of Kansans.  

University of Kansas School of Medicine
The University of Kansas School of Medicine integrates excellent education, scientific discovery, outstanding clinical programs and dedication to community service. The only medical school in Kansas, KU is acknowledged as a leader in training primary care and rural physicians. In addition to its commitment to educating the physician workforce of tomorrow, the school is an emerging leader in biomedical research and the health of the public.

The Sprint Foundation
Since its establishment in 1989, the Sprint Foundation (the philanthropic arm of Sprint) has provided millions of dollars to community organizations across the country. A separate legal entity from Sprint, the Sprint Foundation has made a huge impact by supporting hundreds of organizations each year that focus on education, arts and culture, youth development, community development, and disaster relief. 

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