Soham Puvvada, M.D.Soham Puvvada, M.D., assistant professor of medicine at the University of Arizona, has been awarded a Charles A. Coltman, Jr., Fellowship from The Hope Foundation. The funding will support her development of a phase III randomized clinical trial that will compare rituximab-chemotherapy induction plus maintenance rituximab with or without ibrutinib in patients with newly diagnosed follicular lymphoma. Ibrutinib is a Bruton’s tyrosine kinase inhibitor that has shown promise in treating a range of non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas. The primary endpoint the study will measure is progression-free survival.

Puvvada received her medical degree at the University of South Florida College of Medicine. She completed her internal medicine residency at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, and completed a fellowship at Duke University Medical Center. Her primary focus is lymphoid malignancies and translational research. Her prior research has been in translational genomics, pathway analysis, and preclinical drug discovery and development.

With funding from The Hope Foundation, the Dr. Charles A. Coltman, Jr., Fellowship Program awards $100,000 over two years to engage outstanding young investigators from SWOG member institutions in learning clinical trial methodology in an academic and cooperative group environment.

SWOG institutions may nominate up to two candidates annually. The applicant must have a mentorship arrangement with a notable Group leader who has proven expertise in clinical trials recruitment and management. The application deadline for 2014 fellowships has not yet been published.