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On Wednesday, December 15, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) will hold the second annual Stephen E. Straus Distinguished Lecture in the Science of Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Vikas Sukhatme, M.D., Ph.D., the Victor J. Aresty Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Chief Academic Officer and Harvard Faculty Dean for Academic Programs, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center will present the “Promise for the Future in Yesterday’s Remedies: Traditional Therapies to Modern Medicine.”
Dr. Sukhatme’s research has spanned numerous basic science and clinical arenas, including the discovery of a family of mammalian transcription factors induced by extracellular growth and differentiation cues, and studies on the function of several genes important in kidney cancer and in polycystic kidney disease. His major current interest is in tumor metabolism and tumor immunology and on “outside-the-box” approaches to therapies for advanced cancer.
Dr. Sukhatme will discuss the availability of existing scientifically promising, affordable, and immediately available medical treatments. Traditional medicines have a long history of use and efficacy and offer viable options in addressing other conditions, including cancer. Among these traditions is lifestyle manipulation, specifically dietary adjustments and stress reduction/control, both of which show promise in treating certain forms of cancer. Though more research is needed, Dr. Sukhatme realizes the importance and benefits of studying existing therapies for application to other medical conditions.
The lecture series was established in honor of Stephen E. Straus, M.D., founding director of NCCAM and an internationally recognized clinician-scientist, who died in 2007. In addition to serving as NCCAM director, Straus was senior investigator in the Laboratory of Clinical Investigation at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. He published more than 400 original research articles and edited several books. “Steve created a legacy we are continuing to build upon,” said Josephine P. Briggs, M.D., NCCAM’s current director. “He advocated for the most rigorous scientific methods to study complementary and alternative medicine. A lecture series in his name is only fitting to honor the work of such a brilliant and extraordinary scientist.”
This event is supported by the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health with generous funding from The Bernard Osher Foundation. The lecture begins at 9 a.m. in Lipsett Amphitheater, Building 10, and is followed by a poster session in the Lipsett Amphitheater Lobby. All are invited to attend.