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A Nationally Recognized Gynecology Oncology Team of Clinical/Translational Investigators Joins the Tampa General Hospital Cancer Institute

Published: Nov 12, 2021

Drs. Thomas J. Rutherford, Matthew L. Anderson and Diana P. English bring decades of multidisciplinary experience that encompasses a continuum of care, from prevention, diagnosis, and treatment to high-risk genetic screening and survivorship of patients with gynecologic tumors.

Tampa, FL (Nov. 12, 2021) ­ – Tampa General Hospital announced it has appointed Dr. Thomas J. Rutherford, Dr. Matthew L. Anderson, and Dr. Diana P. English, a team of highly experienced gynecology oncologists and national leaders in the surgical and medical management of pre-malignant and malignant diseases of the female reproductive tract, to its Cancer Institute.

All three physicians will be part of a clinically excellent gynecologic oncology program that will connect patients with advanced treatment options and research trials, while providing compassionate care that accounts for the needs of the whole person. They will continue to see patients at their current practice locations. All three are also on faculty with the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine.

“I am thrilled that Drs. Rutherford, Anderson and English are joining the TGH Cancer Institute to provide not only the best comprehensive and compassionate care to our patients with gynecologic malignancies, but also to strengthen our leadership team as we define and implement an innovative continuum model of prevention, diagnosis, treatment, high-risk genetic screening and survivorship of our cancer patients. With their prestigious academic credentials, and their passion for excellence and for translational and clinical research, our gynecologic oncology program will be at the forefront of developing novel therapies and in connecting patients with gynecologic tumors with advanced treatment options in a compassionate environment,” said Director of Tampa General’s Cancer Institute, Dr. Eduardo M. Sotomayor.

Dr. Thomas J. Rutherford
Advocate for comprehensive cancer care
Rutherford’s exemplary academic career to date started at Yale University School of Medicine, where he was a professor and director of the division of gynecologic oncology. He also served as director of the gynecologic oncology fellowship program, where he mentored several outstanding trainees who became successful academicians, including Anderson and English. Rutherford was then named the director of cancer services at Western Connecticut Health Network. He is currently a professor and director of the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine division of obstetrics and gynecology and the associate director of education, training, and quality care of the TGH Cancer Institute.

In addition to being a nationally recognized leader, a gifted surgical oncologist and mentor, Rutherford is an accomplished physician-scientist who has authored more than 100 scientific journal articles on the prevention, early detection and treatment of gynecological cancers, in particular ovarian cancer.

“Care of cancer patients encompasses a continuum from prevention and high-risk genetic screening to individualized treatment, survivorship and beyond,” said Rutherford.

Dr. Matthew L. Anderson
Nationally recognized translational cancer researcher
Anderson is a nationally recognized translational cancer researcher who utilizes state-of-the-art surgical approaches, including both minimally invasive and robotic surgery, to provide his patients with the best clinical outcomes in a compassionate and patient-oriented environment. Translational medicine is the process of using the findings of laboratory research to develop new diagnostic tools and treatments and similarly employing the research findings from clinical trials to develop new research ideas.

As a physician-scientist, Anderson leverages his expertise in genetics/genomics and in cutting-edge processes to collect pre-malignant, malignant tissue and normal surrounding tissue (biorepository) to identify novel targets and help his patients gain a better understanding of their disease and personalize their treatment. His expertise is particularly helpful to those patients seeking options for managing an inherited predisposition to ovarian and/or uterine cancers.

Anderson serves as a tenured professor in the department of obstetrics and gynecology for the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine and has been appointed associate director for shared resources, TGH Cancer Institute, which includes a cancer biorepository of research samples, among other cores under development, to support basic/translational and clinical researchers at the Cancer Institute. His highly translational lab at the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine has received multiple local, state, and federal grants.

Anderson has also authored more than 100 manuscripts in international peer-reviewed journals highlighting his commitment to academic excellence. He completed training in obstetrics and gynecology at Yale-New Haven Hospital, where he earned his medical degree and Doctor of Philosophy in cellular and molecular biology. Anderson completed his fellowship in gynecologic oncology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. He is a member of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

“My goal is to integrate leading-edge surgical approaches such as minimally invasive and robotic surgery with molecularly targeted agents to achieve the best possible outcome for our patients, while applying my research experience to help patients understand and personalize the therapeutic approach,” said Anderson. “This creates opportunities for patients above and beyond traditional chemotherapy.”

Dr. Diana P. English
Highly skilled and compassionate oncology surgeon
English completed two fellowships during her medical training – a fellowship in gynecologic oncology at Yale School of Medicine and a fellowship in palliative medicine and hospice care at Stanford University and clinics in Palo Alto, Calif. She specializes in the diagnosis and surgical/medical treatment of all gynecologic cancers and is currently the director and associate professor of oncology palliative care at USF Health Morsani College of Medicine. At the TGH Cancer Institute, English will serve as co-leader of the supportive oncology program. English employs minimally invasive approaches, particularly robotic and laparoscopic surgery, to the surgical management of patients with reproductive tract cancers.

She is also the director of USF Health’s gynecologic oncology fellowship, where she is involved in the day-to-day running of the training program for the next generation of gynecologic oncologists.

In addition, she is a dedicated researcher who has contributed several original manuscripts related to targeted therapeutic approaches to uterine serous cancer and ovarian cancer, health disparities research and supportive cancer care. English is also actively involved in international service, particularly medical mission trips to developing countries, and has received several accolades for her passion to help patients in need of her expertise. She is a member of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. “Caring for cancer patients means taking all aspects into account. When treating a patient, I focus on the medical aspects for their treatment, as well as focusing on all of a patient’s needs so that they feel supported throughout their cancer journey,” said English.

All three physicians provide highly specialized care and use novel approaches, including offering heated-intraperitoneal chemotherapy to treat patients with reproductive tract cancers.

Building on the achievements of the Tampa General Hospital oncology program – rated among the top 10 percent for cancer care in the U.S. according to U.S. News & World Report’s 2021-2022 rankings – the new Cancer Institute at Tampa General Hospital is providing comprehensive care via innovative therapies, performance of highly complex surgical procedures and advanced diagnostic imaging and radiotherapy tools.

“This highly experienced and nationally recognized team of specialists bring a wealth of knowledge and acumen in scientific publications in the surgical and medical management of pre-malignant and malignant diseases of the female reproductive tract and in providing second opinions, consultations and treatments of complex gynecologic tumors. They join a world-class team that will help us achieve our vision of providing the safest and most innovative treatment and care for our cancer patients and their families,” said Dr. Abraham Schwarzberg, senior vice president of oncology and network development at Tampa General Hospital. “Adding Rutherford, Anderson and English to the Cancer Institute fold underscores Tampa General’s priority to provide top-tier, innovative care to cancer patients in a leading academic medical center.”

Through the Cancer Institute, Tampa General’s cancer physicians will offer a highly coordinated range of multidisciplinary specialties such as hematologic malignancies, stem cell and cellular therapies, neuro-oncology, thoracic, breast, colorectal, urologic, and gynecologic oncology. Advanced subspecialties will be offered as well, including liver and hepatobiliary oncology, otolaryngology (ear, nose, and throat) and genitourinary (reproductive system and genitourinary tract). Tampa General will continue to take a multidisciplinary approach and will strongly emphasize compassionate and personalized care that focuses on the whole patient.

“A central priority of our Cancer Institute is the training of the next generation of cancer investigators, in particular physician-scientists, who are highly needed in our region and nationwide. Having physician-scientists of this caliber joining the Cancer Institute will clearly speed up these efforts. Being a physician-scientist myself, I am looking forward to working with this exceptional team of accomplished mentors and educators,” said Sotomayor. 

For more information about the Tampa General Cancer Institute, visit www.tgh.org/cancer.

 

ABOUT TAMPA GENERAL HOSPITAL

Tampa General Hospital, a 1,041-bed non-profit academic medical center, is one of the largest hospitals in America and delivers world-class care as the region’s only center for Level l trauma and comprehensive burn care. Tampa General Hospital is the highest-ranked hospital in the market in U.S. News & World Report's 2021-22 Best Hospitals, and one of the top 4 hospitals in Florida, with five specialties ranking among the best programs in the United States. The academic medical center’s commitment to growing and developing its team members is recognized by two prestigious 2021 Forbes magazine rankings – America’s Best Employers by State, third out of 100 Florida companies and first among health care and social organizations and 13th nationally in America’s Best Employers for Women. Tampa General is the safety net hospital for the region, caring for everyone regardless of their ability to pay, and in fiscal 2020 provided a net community benefit worth more than $182.5 million in the form of health care for underinsured patients, community education and financial support to community health organizations in Tampa Bay. It is one of the nation’s busiest adult solid organ transplant centers and is the primary teaching hospital for the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine. With five medical helicopters, Tampa General Hospital transports critically injured or ill patients from 23 surrounding counties to receive the advanced care they need. Tampa General houses a nationally accredited comprehensive stroke center and its 32-bed Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit is the largest on the West Coast of FloridaIt also is home to the Jennifer Leigh Muma 82-bed Level IV neonatal intensive care unit, and a nationally accredited rehabilitation center. Tampa General Hospital’s footprint includes 17 Tampa General Medical Group Primary Care offices, TGH Family Care Center Kennedy, TGH Brandon Healthplex, TGH Virtual Health and 19 outpatient Radiology Centers. Tampa Bay residents also receive world-class care from the TGH Urgent Care powered by Fast Track network of clinics, and they can even receive home visits in select areas through TGH Urgent Care at Home, powered by Fast Track.  As one of the largest hospitals in the country, Tampa General Hospital is first in Florida to partner with GE Healthcare and open a clinical command center that uses artificial intelligence and predictive analytics to improve and better coordinate patient care at a lower cost.  For more information, go to www.tgh.org.