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Fracasso joins Massey Cancer Center and VCU Health to lead the cancer service line

Sep 06, 2022

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This month, VCU Massey Cancer Center and VCU Health welcomed Paula M. Fracasso, M.D., Ph.D., FACP, as the deputy director of the cancer center and senior vice president of the cancer service line at VCU Health. The cancer service line is a collaborative model designed to fulfill strategic initiatives for Massey while maintaining close alignment with the health system.

“We’re so pleased to have Dr. Fracasso join the team at an exciting time of growth for Massey,” said Robert A. Winn, M.D., director of VCU Massey Cancer Center and senior associate dean for cancer innovation at the VCU School of Medicine. “Her leadership of the cancer service line will allow us to more effectively marshal the resources of our institution and align our clinical care, research and education to better serve our community.”

As a matrix center, Massey Cancer Center functions both independently and as part of the health system and university. Fracasso will work with leadership at Massey, VCU Health and VCU School of Medicine—including Winn, Michael Roussos, president of VCU Medical Center, and Michael Elliott, Pharm.D., MSHA, FACHE, chief operations officer at VCU Health—to lead service line planning and support clinicians and staff to deliver high-quality cancer care to Massey’s growing and diverse patient population while fostering and expanding clinical research.

“Dr. Fracasso’s deep expertise across the spectrum of patient care and clinical and translation research in NCI-designated cancer centers will greatly contribute to our continued efforts to enhance patient care by streamlining operations under a centralized cancer service line,” said Michael Roussos, president of VCU Medical Center.

As a board-certified medical oncologist, academic leader and pharmaceutical executive with expertise in novel therapies including immuno-oncology and cellular agents, Fracasso has led teams of physicians, scientists and support personnel at Washington University in St. Louis, University of Virginia, Bristol Myers Squibb and Adaptimmune. At Washington University in St. Louis, she built the Siteman Cancer Center’s Development Therapeutics Program for phase 1 and 2 clinical trials.

As the Lawrence W. Penniston, M.D., Family Professor in Women’s Oncology Research at the University of Virginia, Fracasso held positions including deputy director of the cancer center and section chief of medical oncology. She then moved into the pharmaceutical industry, serving as executive director in early oncology development at Bristol Myers Squibb and vice president and head of clinical development at Adaptimmune before becoming the chief medical officer of TD2 and a consultant for several biotech companies.

Fracasso earned her undergraduate degree in biology and classics from the College of the Holy Cross and received her medical and graduate degrees from Yale University. She completed her internal medicine internship and residency at Beth Israel Hospital in Boston, her postdoctoral research fellowship at MIT and her clinical fellowship in hematology-oncology at Tufts Medical Center.

“I’m excited to be joining such a strong, accomplished team of clinicians, researchers and staff all motivated by our shared mission to reduce the cancer burden for all Virginians,” said Fracasso.

Written by Annie Harris.

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