This month, CARG shines a spotlight on three researchers from the University of Rochester: Dr. Sindhu Kadambi and her two mentors, Dr. Supriya Mohile and Dr. Allison Magnuson. Dr. Mohile is the Philip and Marilyn Wehrheim Professor of Medicine and Surgery at the James Wilmot Cancer Institute and the Director of Geriatric Oncology Research. Dr. Magnuson is an Assistant Professor of Hematology and Oncology at Rochester and Director of SOCARE, Wilmot’s geriatric oncology clinical service line.
Having completed her fellowship in geriatric medicine, Dr. Kadambi is currently in the second year of her fellowship in medical oncology. “I am particularly interested in older caregivers of older adults with cancer,” she notes, “and in treatment of older adults with GU malignancies.”
Though Dr. Kadambi officially joined CARG this year as a member, she is no stranger to the organization and has been part of Junior CARG for the past two years. “It is a great venue for junior investigators,” she says, “to learn the landscape of geriatric oncology and receive feedback on study ideas.”
Dr. Kadambi says she is extremely grateful to Drs. Mohile and Magnuson for their mentorship, first as a resident and then as a fellow at the University of Rochester and now as an official member of CARG. “They have both been amazing mentors,” says Dr. Kadambi, “providing me with opportunities, research mentorship and guidance on career development.”
Specifically, they have assisted with her study to characterize age-related conditions in older caregivers of older adults with cancer and develop supportive care interventions to improve their health. With their help, Dr. Kadambi recently applied for an ASCO Young Investigator Award for her research.
The trio also collaborated on a recent article in Nature Reviews Clinical Oncology, “Older adults with cancer and their caregivers — current landscape and future directions for clinical care”. “The paper,” Dr. Kadambi explains, “is a review of published studies on cancer in older adults and their caregivers––many of which were conducted by CARG members!––and clinical trials that incorporate the geriatric assessment and novel trial designs important to older adults.”
As mentors in different stages of their careers, Drs. Mohile and Magnuson each bring different strengths and perspectives to the relationship. As the relatively junior mentor, Dr. Magnuson meets more frequently with Dr. Kadambi regarding the more granular aspects of her research. And as the more senior mentor, Dr. Mohile provides Dr. Kadambi with global feedback and long-term career guidance.
And the benefits flow both ways. As Dr. Magnuson explains, “I also learn mentoring skills through this joint-mentoring experience!” And for Dr. Mohile, “It’s been a pleasure for me to co-mentor Dr. Kadambi with Dr. Magnuson, as we both bring different skills and advice together in our approach to mentoring.”