Former Director of Hollings Cancer Center Dies

Mark R. Green, MD, Former Director of MUSC Hollings Cancer Center and University of California, San Diego, Moores Cancer Center, Dies

Charleston, SC – Dr. Mark R. Green, former Director of Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) and the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), Moores Cancer Center, died Monday, February 23, 2015, at the age of 70. Dr. Green was an important figure in the development of medical oncology and played a pivotal role in the history of both cancer centers.

Dr. Green received his MD from Harvard University and trained at Harvard’s Beth Israel Hospital, the National Cancer Institute (NCI), and Stanford University. In 1976, he joined UCSD, where he held the Edwin and Evelyn Tasch Chair in Cancer Research, established in his honor, and served as Director of the UCSD Cancer Center. In 1986, he led the center to NCI designation for the first time.

In 1996, Dr. Green joined MUSC as the Director of the Hollings Cancer Center and the Mary M. Gilbreth Professor of Oncology. Serving as Director until 2000, he made important contributions to the development of the Hollings Cancer Center in its early stages. He retired from the full-time MUSC faculty as a Professor Emeritus in 2004.

Dr. Green was recognized as a preeminent clinical investigator, clinician, and teacher/mentor. A highly respected oncologist, he contributed significantly to the understanding and treatment of solid tumors. His research focused on clinical trials of new therapies for the treatment of cancers of the lung and pancreas. He was widely published, and his impactful research to improve cancer treatments made a difference in the lives of thousands of cancer patients worldwide.

"Dr. Mark Green was one of the most influential lung cancer medical oncologists in the last 50 years," commented Gerard A. Silvestri, MD, MS, FCCP, Hillenbrand Professor of Thoracic Oncology at MUSC. "He had a command of the oncologic literature that was second to none. He was one of the few doctors I have known who was not only able to quote chapter and verse about the latest cancer research, but he was also able to synthesize it for your particular patient -- a marvelous combination and one that is rare in medicine."

Dr. Green was a leader in the field of oncology, serving as Chair of the NCI’s Cancer and Leukemia Group B (CALGB) Respiratory Committee for over 20 years and Vice Chairman of CALGB from 1995 to 2007. During his tenure as chair of CALGB, he oversaw the development of new and innovative treatments used in thirty member universities and hundreds of medical centers. He was also a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine subspecialty Board of Medical Oncology from 1989 to 1999 and served as the subspecialty board chair from 1995 to 1999.

Most recently, Dr. Green was the chief medical officer of Xcenda and Vice President of Xcenda's Oncology Insights consulting practice, a position he held since 2007.

To honor his contributions to Hollings Cancer Center and the field of thoracic oncology, the Mark R. Green, MD, Distinguished Endowed Visiting Professorship in Thoracic Oncology was established in 2011. This educational event to advance thoracic oncology is held annually at Hollings Cancer Center. Dr. Green has been the driving force behind this lectureship, including the most recent lecture in January of 2015, which hosted Joan H. Schiller, MD, Chief, Division of Hematology and Oncology and Deputy Director of the Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

Dr. Schiller commented, “Dr. Green was always upbeat, energetic, and remarkably knowledgeable in every aspect of lung cancer care. In addition to knowing the literature like the back of his hand, he was always extremely interested in fostering the careers of young physicians. He will be missed.”

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