Dr. Xiang Zhang, associate professor and McNair Scholar in the Lester and Sue Smith Breast Center, part of the NCI-designated Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center at Baylor College of Medicine, has been named as the 2018 recipient of the Sue Eccles Young Investigator Award from the Metastasis Research Society (MRS).

The Sue Eccles Award honors excellent metastasis research performed by a member of the MRS who is 40 years old or under and has established an exceptional record of achievement in metastasis research.

This honor recognizes Zhang’s outstanding work related to the interactions between tumors and connective tissue cells in the metastasis of breast cancer.

“Bone metastases do not appear immediately following breast cancer. My research looks into the biological question of what is happening during this latency period and the interactions between cancer cells and bone cells that allow the cancer cells to survive, which is significantly relevant to understand for the clinical setting,” said Zhang.

Additionally, Zhang’s research has contributed to understanding the changes that occur to the therapeutic profile of the cell when it metastasizes, prompting clinicians to tailor the types of therapies used to better treat the patient.

“I’m very encouraged and inspired by the Sue Eccles Award, and it serves as a strong stimulus to both myself and my lab team to continue our work,” said Zhang. “I’ve benefitted greatly from the collaborative environment at Baylor and am grateful for the leadership across the College for encouraging me to pursue this research.”

Upon receiving his award, Zhang will deliver a lecture at the 17th Biennial Congress of the MRS, being held on Aug. 1-5 in Princeton, N.J.