Newswise — ARLINGTON, Va., September 6, 2017 – The Radiation Oncology Institute (ROI) announced today the winners of its inaugural publication awards, which recognize research on the value of radiation therapy for improving cancer outcomes. The winning articles are available online in Advances in Radiation Oncology, the open-access clinical research journal of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO).

“The concept of ‘value’ is at the heart of nearly all modern health care debates, and ROI is focused on supporting research that examines the value radiation therapy holds for its patients—in both survival outcomes and financial realities such as time away from work,” said ROI Vice-president Colleen A. F. Lawton, MD, FASTRO. “Both individual patients and the health care system overall benefit from enhancing the value of cancer treatment, as demonstrated in the articles by Dr. Voong and Dr. Vfyhuis. Their studies underscore both the complexity of value in treatment-related decisions and the importance of fostering discussions between cancer patients and physicians about what value truly means to them.

K. Ranh Voong, MD, MPH, a radiation oncologist at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Kimmel Cancer Center, received the Outstanding Article Award for her work on long-term costs associated with hypofractionated radiation therapy for prostate cancer. While multiple studies have demonstrated clinical benefits of this accelerated treatment approach compared to conventional prostate radiation, Dr. Voong and her colleagues showed that the accelerated treatment approach also offers patients an additional benefit of cost savings.

ROI will award Dr. Voong a $5,000 grant to continue research on the value of radiation therapy, in addition to paying the open-access fee for the publication of her article, “Long-term economic value of hypofractionated prostate radiation: Secondary analysis of a randomized trial.”

Melissa Vyfhuis, MD, PhD, a resident in radiation oncology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, received the Excellence Award for her work on trimodality therapy—combined radiation, surgery and chemotherapy—for locally advanced non-small cell lung cancer (LA-NSCLC). In this study, Dr. Vyfhuis and her colleagues found a survival benefit for patients who received surgery following definitive doses of chemoradiation, compared to those who did not undergo surgery.

ROI will pay the open-access fee for Dr. Vyfhuis’s article, “Oncological outcomes from trimodality therapy receiving definitive doses of neoadjuvant chemoradiation (≥60 Gy) and factors influencing consideration for surgery in stage III non-small cell lung cancer,” to be published.

Dr. Voong and Dr. Vyfhuis also will be recognized at the upcoming ASTRO Annual Meeting, to be held September 24-27 at the San Diego Convention Center. Each manuscript submitted to the competition was evaluated through the Advances in Radiation Oncology peer-review process, considered by at least two ROI reviewers and judged on its overall impact, significance, approach and innovation.

All ROI research initiatives stem from findings of the National Radiation Oncology Research Needs Assessment conducted during the ROI’s formative years to determine the most pressing areas of need for research in radiation oncology. Detailed information about ROI awards and initiatives is available at



The Radiation Oncology Institute (ROI) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) foundation created in 2006 by the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) Board of Directors to support research and education efforts around the world that heighten the critical role of radiation therapy in the treatment of cancer. ROI strategically funds research on new and existing radiation therapy treatments to identify links between best practices and improved outcomes, to evaluate the efficacy and cost-benefit of radiation therapy and to foster multi-institutional research in radiation oncology. For more information, visit