COURTESY OF JAMES METZ, MD ’95 gastrointestinal tract (a specialization of Dr. Metz’s), genitourinary system, head and neck, or lung, and those with lymphomas, sarcomas, or pediatric tumors, can be treated with proton beam therapy. The center at Penn was developed from the ground up. Dr. Metz and his team have also created unique training programs for other proton centers—both to assist in the building of them and to train others in the treatment of patients. “We train more people than anyone in the world,” says Dr. Metz, “including facilities in Sweden and China.” Ten centers are due to open soon, and an international group of clinicians will be arriving for training in the coming months. Dr. Metz is excited by proton tech- nology’s evolution and its possibilities. “It continues to improve,” he explains. “We use pencil beam scanning now—we can put the radiation dose exactly where we want it. And we can integrate it with advanced chemotherapy and imaging.” Dr. Metz believes that in the near future, we will see the use of proton beam therapy with novel biologic agents. He also describes what this therapy means to cancer patients who in the past had limited options: “We can treat patients now we couldn’t treat before, particularly patients who had radiation exposure in the past. When there’s a local failure, we can re-treat because of our ability to spare the normal tissues that have been radiated before. There are just a lot of new opportunities.” Dr. Metz believes Penn and other cancer centers will continue to bring high-tech, cutting-edge cancer care closer to patients. “Moving technology closer, translating clinical trials into treatments closer to people’s homes—that’s the future,” he emphasizes. “If you look at cancer care in this country, 85 percent of it is already delivered in a community setting.” A A Second First long with his leadership in radiation oncology, Dr. Metz is executive director of OncoLink, a website that helps cancer patients, families, health care professionals, and the general public obtain accurate cancer-related information online. Started in 1994 —Continued on page 46 Robert Wood Johnson I MEDICINE 41