Medical Oncology Service: About Us

The Medical Oncology Service is part of the Office of the Clinical Director, Center for Cancer Research (CCR) at the National Cancer Institute (NCI).

Medical oncology staff and fellows support patients who are participating in NCI-CCR clinical protocols at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical Center, located on the NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland. The NIH Clinical Center is the nation’s largest hospital totally dedicated to clinical research.

Medical Oncology Service, National Cancer Institute emblem

Our Mission

  • Develop novel therapeutic research strategies for treating cancer and test these strategies by conducting clinical research across a spectrum of diseases and mechanisms;
  • Provide outstanding clinical care to adult cancer patients enrolled in NCI-CCR research protocols, including in-patient and out-patient care services;
  • Train physician-scientists in a laboratory-to-clinic translational research setting to develop their expertise in medical oncology research and to support their board certification by the American Board of Internal Medicine.


Medical Oncology Service
Center for Cancer Research
National Cancer Institute
Building 10, Room 12N226
Bethesda, MD 20892


James L. Gulley, M.D., Ph.D.

Program Specialist

Janet Edds

Ph: 240.858.3297

Other Training Programs

Additional training opportunities in medical oncology at NIH are highlighted below.

Senior Medical Students – To learn more about 4-week clinical rotations in medical oncology at the NIH Clinical Center, visit the Clinical Electives Program.

Residents – Elective rotations offer residents the opportunity to have direct experience in the care of patients enrolled in investigational protocols at the NIH Clinical Center. For more information, visit Elective Rotations for Residents and Clinical Fellows.

Clinical Trials at the NIH Clinical Center

The clinical trials conducted by the NCI-CCR on the National Institutes of Health (NIH) campus in Bethesda, Maryland represent the core of our clinical program. At the CCR, basic and clinical science are seamlessly integrated with a mission to reduce the burden of cancer through exploring, discovering, and the translating new approaches into compassionate and effective care for all cancer patients. CCR clinical studies are aimed at:

  • Answering critical questions about a particular disease or disease process
  • Identifying promising new therapeutic interventions that can then be confirmed in larger studies carried out across the country at participating NCI-supported cancer centers.

Search CCR Clinical Trials


James L. Gulley, M.D., Ph.D.

Program Director, NIH Hematology/Oncology Fellowship
Marijo Bilusic, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Program Director for Hematology
Charles D. Bolan, Jr., M.D.

Associate Program Director for Medical Oncology
Kathryn A. Lurain, M.D., M.P.H.



Physician Assistants
George Carter, P.A.

Program Coordinators
Janet Edds

George Lindsay


Genitourinary Malignancies Branch
James L. Gulley, M.D., Ph.D.
Andrea B. Apolo, M.D.
William L. Dahut, M.D.
Marijo Bilusic, M.D., Ph.D.
Ravi A. Madan, M.D.
Fatima Karzai, M.D.
Philip Arlen, M.D.
Howard Parnes, M.D. (DCP)
Yang-Ming Ning, M.D. (FDA)

Experimental Transplantation and Immunology Branch
Ronald E. Gress, M.D.
Dennis Hickstein, M.D.
James N. Kochenderfer, M.D.
Christian S. Hinrichs, M.D.
Christopher G. Kanakry, M.D.
Steven Z. Pavletic, M.D., M.S.
Jennifer A. Kanakry, M.D.
Jennifer Brudno, M.D.
Scott Norberg, D.O.

HIV and AIDS Malignancy Branch
Robert Yarchoan, M.D.
Richard F. Little, M.D. (CTEP)
Kathyrn Lurain, M.D., M.P.H.
Ramya Ramaswami, M.B.B.S., M.R.C.P., M.P.H.

Developmental Therapeutics Clinic
James Doroshow, M.D.
Alice Pinting Chen, M.D.
Geraldine H. O'Sullivan Coyne, M.D.
Richard Piekarz, M.D., Ph.D (CTEP)
Sheila Prindiville, M.D., M.P.H. (CCCT)
Elad Sharon, M.D., M.P.H. (CTEP) 
Howard Streicher, M.D. (CTEP)
Naoko Takebe, M.D., Ph.D. (DTC)

Women's Malignancies Branch
Stanley Lipkowitz, M.D., Ph.D.
Christina M. Annunziata, M.D., Ph.D.
Jung-Min Lee, M.D.
Alexandra S. Zimmer, M.D.
Elise C. Kohn, M.D. (CTEP)
Lori Minasian, M.D. (DCP)

Thoracic and GI Malignancies Branch
Raffit Hassan, M.D.
Tim F. Greten, M.D.
Udayan Guha, M.D., Ph.D.
Arun Rajan, M.D.
Gideon Blumenthal, M.D. (FDA)
Eva Szabo, M.D. (DCP)
Shakun Malik, M.D.
Azam Ghafoor, M.D.

Lymphoid Malignancies Branch
Thomas A. Waldmann, M.D.
Wyndham Wilson, M.D., Ph.D.
Kevin C. Conlon, M.D.
Christopher Melani, M.D.
Milos Miljkovic, M.D., MSc.
Mark J. Roschewski, M.D.
Dickran Kazandjian, M.D. (FDA)

Urologic Oncology Branch
Ramaprasad Srinivasan, M.D.,Ph.D

Neuro-Oncology Branch
Mark R. Gilbert, M.D.

Laboratory of Molecular Biology
Christine Campo Alewine, M.D., Ph.D.
Robert J. Kreitman, M.D.

Vaccine Branch
Hoyoung Maeng, M.D.

Laboratory of Tumor Immunology and Biology
Margaret Gatti-Mays, M.D., M.P.H.
Julius Strauss, M.D.


Class Starting in 2019

Class Starting in 2018

Class Starting in 2017

Class Starting in 2016

NIH Hematology/Oncology Fellowship

scientist with test tube (iStock photo)

Program Director, NIH Hematology/Oncology Fellowship
Marijo Bilusic, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Program Director for Hematology
Charles D. Bolan, Jr., M.D.

Associate Program Director for Medical Oncology
Kathryn Lurain, M.D., M.P.H.

Program Coordinator Specialists
Ms. Janet Edds

Mr. George Lindsay

Additional Information

The following webpages can provide more information:


The National Institutes of Health Hematology/Oncology Fellowship is jointly supported by the Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute (CCR, NCI) and the Division of Intramural Research, National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (DIR, NHLBI). The program provides a strong clinical grounding in hematology and oncology, as well as a comprehensive introduction to clinical, laboratory, and translational research. Fellows train at the NIH Clinical CenterThe Johns Hopkins HospitalGeorgetown University’s Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Maryland, George Washington University, and the MedStar Washington Hospital Center.

Trainees acquire experience treating a wide variety of cancers, dealing with the entire spectrum of complications and therapy, and developing a multidisciplinary approach to the treatment of complex cases. Fellows also learn the strategies and regulations involved in conducting clinical research in medical oncology, bench-to-bedside research, and clinical trials design and management.

Fellows are eligible to sit for the ABIM certifying exam in medical oncology after 2 years; those interested in the combined medical oncology/hematology program are eligible to sit for both exams after 3 years.

How to Apply

Applicants can begin applying to the program yearly on July 1 via the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS) webpage. Early application is encouraged for those wishing to be considered for the 3 to 4 Friday interview sessions generally held in late August, September, and early October. Applications are reviewed and processed through ERAS. Our program is listed as NIH Clinical Center Program (ACGME ID#1552314155) under the heading for Hematology/Oncology (Internal Medicine).

Documents Required for Application:

  • A minimum of 3 letters of recommendation, one of which is from the candidate's internal medicine training program director.
  • Candidates with significant prior research experience should include a recommendation from their research mentor.

Application Deadline:
September 1st Annually

Program Structure

The NIH Hematology/Oncology Fellowship program provides a unique opportunity for physicians interested in academic careers to develop and integrate their interests in clinical, basic, and population research. At their discretion, fellows may choose to pursue a 2-year program (1 year of clinical rotations, 1 year of research, and half-day/week continuity clinics) leading to board certification in either hematology or oncology alone (single-track training).

Years 1 and 2:  The first 18 months of clinical training includes rotations in in-patient wards, as well as outpatient clinical rotations in hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, lymphoma, leukemia, solid-tumor oncology, bone marrow failure, sickle cell hemoglobinopathies, and hematology/oncology consults at the NIH Clinical Center, one of the most outstanding medical research facilities in the world. Additional structured clinical rotations are performed in hematology/oncology clinics and consults at Georgetown University’s Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, MedStar Washington Hospital Center and on the acute leukemia service at The Johns Hopkins Hospital. Each rotation includes regular daily rounds for teaching and patient care. The conference schedule includes regularly scheduled journal clubs, tumor boards, core lecture series, board review, multidisciplinary rounds, and weekly conferences at which fellows present analyses of clinical or research problems. Internationally recognized clinical investigators are invited to present at weekly CCR grand rounds and at multiple venues encompassing the NIH’s intramural and extramural research programs.

Years 2 and 3: 

During the final 18 months of research and half-day/week continuity clinics, fellows may choose to work with one of the more than 100 laboratories and clinical research groups at the NIH to acquire the skills necessary to become an independent biomedical investigator. The choice of laboratory or research group is made by mutual agreement of the fellow, the laboratory chief, and the fellowship program director. During this period, the half-day/week clinic continuity obligation continues, along with didactic activities and further development of clinical independence (with supervision). 

Research opportunities include basic, clinical, and population investigation. By arrangement, fellows may elect to receive training in the laboratory, clinical, or research program of any investigator on the NIH campus, not only with members of the CCR, NCI or the DIR, NHLBI. Continuing a fellowship beyond the 3-year program is at the mutual discretion of the fellow and research mentor. Many fellows elect to stay for a 4th or 5th year to enhance their competitiveness for intramural tenure-track positions or extramural positions and grant funding.

Joint Training in Cancer Prevention & Control

A collaborative effort between the NIH Hematology Oncology Fellowship Program and the NCI Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program (CPFP) allows single-track medical oncology fellows to complete both clinical training in oncology and research training in cancer prevention and control.   The Joint Training in Cancer Prevention and Control track provides clinical training with the NIH Hematology Oncology Fellowship Program, the opportunity to earn a fully funded MPH or equivalent degree sponsored by the CPFP, mentored research opportunities in cancer prevention and control across the NCI, and access to a structured professional development curriculum.  For more information about this track, the training timeline, and the CPFP, visit

scientist working at bench (iStock photo)


The NIH Hematology/Oncology Fellowship is unique in its breadth of opportunities for individualized training. Fellows wishing to pursue laboratory research may choose from among hundreds of principal investigators, many of whom have achieved international recognition. Labs that take on a fellow are paid a supplement for extra supplies and services, making the addition of a bright, eager fellow a welcome prospect. Fellows working with clinical teams have the opportunity to help design, write, and run clinical trials, and then analyze and publish their findings. Fellows wishing to conduct research in cancer prevention and control can choose mentors in areas including vaccination, screening, chemoprevention, behavior modification, health care delivery, risk assessment, or genetic risk interpretation (see the Joint Training in Cancer Prevention and Control opportunity below). Fellows interested in experiencing a regulatory environment can arrange for protected time with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). During their second or subsequent years, fellows may also apply to participate in a formal training program in clinical trials research, offered collaboratively with Duke University and leading to a master’s degree. Finally, fellows may take advantage of numerous opportunities to write grants and participate in grant-writing workshops.

Other Benefits

  • Competitive salary
  • Relocation assistance
  • Loan repayment program for eligible fellows
  • Payment of moving expenses
  • Moonlighting opportunities within NIH
  • Reimbursement for medical oncology and hematology board exams
  • Reimbursement for state medical license
  • Paid travel covered for one national meeting per year (e.g., ASCO or ASH) in the second and subsequent fellowship years
  • The numerous social and cultural amenities of life in the Washington, D.C. area

NCI Immunotherapy Fellowship

scientists working in the lab (iStock photo)

Course Director

James L. Gulley, M.D., Ph.D.
Director, Medical Oncology Service


This training program is designed for physicians who have completed a medical oncology fellowship program in the United States and who seek specialized training in immunotherapy with clinical trials and clinical trial development.

There are multiple opportunities for training in clinical immunotherapy at the Center for Cancer Research (CCR), National Cancer Institute (NCI), with active clinical programs in therapeutic cancer vaccines, immune checkpoint modulation, adoptive cellular therapies (both TCR transgenic and CAR-T therapy) and antibody-based immunotherapies. This training program, at the CCR in Bethesda, Maryland, allows the fellow to have exposure to multiple clinical immunotherapeutic approaches and also to key opinion leaders in the field of clinical immunotherapy. This 1-year fellowship provides opportunities to understand how to design, write and run clinical trials, how to treat patients, how manage toxicities, as well as opportunities to work with multiple experimental agents.

Funding and Co-sponsorship

This fellowship is co-sponsored by the National Cancer Institute and the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) and made possible, in part, by an educational grant from EMD-Serono.

How to Apply

To apply, please send your CV, statement of purpose, three personal references, and your documentation of board eligibility status or certification status to

Application Period Opens:  November 20 - December 8

Review Period:  December 11 - December 15

Notification Date:  December 18




  • Work with internationally recognized experts in immunotherapy
  • Learn management of immune-related adverse events
  • Develop experience in writing and running immunotherapy clinical trials
  • Develop experience with a wide array of immunotherapy approaches
    • Immunue checkpoint inhibitors
    • Adoptive cellular therapy (CAR-T or TCR transgenic approaches)
    • Therapeutic vaccines
    • Immunocytokines
    • Combination immunotherapy approaches
  • Possibilities for attending and presenting at national/international meetings
  • Attend and participate in regularly scheduled NIH immunotherapy conferences
  • Make a difference in the lives of patients with cancer at the largest hospital in the world devoted solely to research
  • Salary is based on applicable laws, regulations, and policies


Illustration showing T-cell mediated killing of tumor cells


Immunotherapy for cancer has fundamentally changed the way we are treating patients with metastatic disease. The exploding interest in immunotherapy has been propelled by the rapid and durable responses seen in treated patients, often with little to no side effects. Billions of dollars are now being poured into immunotherapy research with multiple new approvals since 2010 and even more expected in the near future. However, the basics of immunotherapy taught in medical schools when our current generation of medical oncologists trained are woefully inadequate for the high-tech immunotherapies being tested with ever-increasing intensity. In addition, the side effect profile with immunotherapies is related to the mechanism of action and is unique among anti-cancer agents. The mechanism of action is more complex as often agents don’t directly target the cancer but rather target the immune system which, in turn, targets the cancer. Furthermore, the kinetics of a clinical response following immunotherapy may be different from conventional therapy which is important for practitioners and patients alike to know to help manage expectations. Finally, the mechanisms of resistance to immunotherapy are also unique and a better understanding of these mechanisms will guide combination therapy.