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Renowned Cancer Researcher to Present at Inaugural Cancer Summit

Kenneth Grossmann, MD, PhDAt the upcoming inaugural Cancer Summit, the community will have a unique opportunity to hear from Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) at the University of Utah and St. John's Medical Center (SJMC) specialists about new cancer treatment breakthroughs, what's on the horizon, and what patients can expect from recent advances in cancer care. The event will be held on Thursday, June 29, from 7 to 8 pm, in the Jackson Room at the Wort Hotel.

HCI medical oncologist Kenneth Grossmann, MD, PhD, will be the keynote speaker, focusing on clinical trials and treatment advances in immunotherapy. Immunotherapy is the use of medicines to stimulate a person's own immunity system to recognize and destroy cancer cells more effectively. In recent years, HCI’s immunotherapy research and clinical trials have opened new doors for treating some cancers as an alternative or adjunct treatment for traditional care involving chemotherapy and radiation.

"One of the exciting opportunities that our affiliation with HCI offers is community and clinical education on important medical topics," said SJMC communications officer Karen Connelly. "We are very pleased to bring a top researcher to Jackson Hole to speak to patients, hospital staff, and our intellectually curious community."

Dr. Grossmann is a medical oncologist with HCI's Melanoma Program and an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Utah. His laboratory research focuses on a demethylase enzyme that can cause the hallmarks of many kinds of cancer, including melanoma. Additionally, he focuses on understanding other signaling pathways in melanoma tumors and developing methods to overcome resistance to targeted therapies.

Ben Tanner, MHA, executive director of the cancer hospital at HCI, will begin the program with remarks about the affiliation agreement between HCI and SJMC.

Following Dr. Grossmann's presentation, the Summit will feature a panel of physicians from the HCI and SJMC medical staff who regularly care for cancer patients in their specific medical specialty. The panel will be facilitated by SJMC CEO Dr. Paul Beaupre, and the focus will be on the pathways available for care for St. John's cancer patients, including how local specialists work together and coordinate care with HCI and other cancer centers.

Panelists will include Dr. John Ward, hematologist/oncologist; Dr. Ryan Bair, radiation oncologist; Dr. Randy Kjorstad, general surgeon; Dr. Maura Lofaro, OB/GYN; Dr. Martin Trott, ENT; Dr. Lars Conway, pathologist; and Dr. Sean Haling, radiologist.


Media contacts:
Suzanne Young, Marketing Manager, University of Utah Health, (801) 661-4609,
Karen Connelly, Chief Marketing Officer, St. John’s Medical Center, 307 739 7380,

St. John's Medical Center in Jackson, Wyoming, offers patient-centered clinical excellence and community wellness services through a full-service hospital, primary care, and specialty physician practices, and a long-term care Living Center.

Huntsman Cancer Institute's mission is to understand cancer from its beginnings, to use that knowledge in the creation and improvement of cancer treatments, to relieve the suffering of cancer patients, and to provide education about cancer risk, prevention, and care.

University of Utah Health Care is the Intermountain West’s only academic health care system, combining excellence in patient care, the latest in medical research, and teaching to provide leading-edge medicine in a caring and personal setting. The system provides care for Utahns and residents of five surrounding states in a referral area encompassing more than 10 percent of the continental United States.

The mission of the St. John’s Hospital Foundation is to secure philanthropic support to advance the mission and strategic objectives of St. John’s Medical Center, including patient-centered care, clinical excellence, and community wellness. For more information, visit