Dr. Frank L. Meyskens Jr., director of the Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center at UCI Medical Center, received the American Society of Preventive Oncology's Distinguished Achievement Award on Sunday at the organization's 30th annual conference in Washington, D.C.
Meyskens, who is also senior associate dean in the College of Health Sciences, earned the award for his significant research contributions in the areas of cancer prevention and treatment over the past 30 years. One of these areas of research, chemoprevention, was the topic of his keynote address at the conference.
Chemoprevention, not to be confused with chemotherapy, is the administration of nontoxic agents such as vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals to healthy individuals who may be at increased risk for cancer. Chemopreventive agents can either stop genetic mutations that lead to cancer or prevent or stop processes that lead to excessive replication of damaged cells.
Meyskens, who is currently the principle investigator of a National Institutes of Health-funded clinical trial at UCI that is studying various compounds to determine their possible cancer-prevention effects, has been director of the Chao Center for 16 years. The only facility in Orange County to be an National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center and one of only 39 nationwide, the Chao Center had 61,000 visits last year, serving patients through its oncology, surgical, women's and pediatric cancer programs.
"Dr. Meyskens' contribution to research into cancer prevention is impressive and worthy of this impressive recognition," said Dr. Thomas C. Cesario, dean of the College of Health Sciences. "His work has made a difference in the lives of people touched by cancer and, I'm sure, will continue to do so."
Named among the "Top Doctors" in Orange County by Orange Coast Magazine several times in the last 10 years, Meyskens is the founding member of the International Society of Cancer Prevention (and president from 1999-2004) as well as an active member of many professional organizations, including the American Society of Clinical Oncology and the American Association for Cancer Research, where he has served on numerous committees.
The author of hundreds of research articles and book chapters, Meyskens lectures around the world on a variety of topics including cancer prevention, nutrition, and the development of new cancer drugs and treatments. He also sits on the editorial boards of several peer-reviewed journals, including the Journal of Clinical Oncology and the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Meyskens received his medical degree from UC San Francisco. He also received postgraduate training at the National Cancer Institute and the National Institutes of Health. He lives in Irvine with his wife and three children.
About the Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center: Designated as a comprehensive cancer center by the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the Chao Center is one of only 38 facilities nationwide to attain this recognition. This means that cancer patients have access to new therapies years in advance of their general availability, as well as a full spectrum of conventional approaches. Patient therapies are managed by a multidisciplinary team of highly trained cancer specialists who are sensitive to the physical, emotional and economic impacts of the illness on patients and families.
About UCI Medical Center: UCI Medical Center is the only university hospital in Orange County, offering acute- and general-care service. It has the county's only Level I trauma center, American College of Surgeons-verified regional burn center and National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center. Included in its University Children's Hospital is the county's most sophisticated neonatal unit, caring for more than 500 premature and at-risk infants a year. UCI also is the only hospital in Orange County recognized in U.S. News & World Report's annual listing of "America's Best Hospitals" and first to receive Magnet Designation for nursing excellence. For more information on UCI Medical Center doctors and programs, call 1-877-UCI-DOCS or visit www.ucihealth.com.
About the University of California, Irvine: The University of California, Irvine is a top-ranked university dedicated to research, scholarship and community service. Founded in 1965, UCI is among the fastest-growing University of California campuses, with┬ more than┬ 24,000 undergraduate and graduate students and about 1,400 faculty members. The second-largest employer in dynamic Orange County, UCI contributes an annual economic impact of $3.3 billion. For more UCI news, visit www.today.uci.edu.