Pierre Massion, MD, an internationally recognized expert on early detection of lung cancer, died April 4, 2021, at the age of 58.
Massion was born March 28, 1963 in Brussels, Belgium. He received his undergraduate and medical degrees from Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium, where he also completed a clinical fellowship and a residency. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship in pulmonary research at the Cardiovascular Research Institute at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and later held a residency in internal medicine at UCSF-Mount Zion Medical Center and a pulmonary and critical care medicine fellowship at UCSF.
Since 2001, Massion worked at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC), where he specialized in cancer care and established a research lab that made multiple discoveries related to cancer biomarkers, the evaluation of pulmonary nodules, and screening protocols to improve early detection of lung cancer. Most recently, he was the Cornelius Vanderbilt Chair and professor of medicine at VUMC, and the director of the Cancer Early Detection and Prevention Initiative and co-leader of the Cancer Health Outcomes and Control Research Program at Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC). He was also director of faculty development in the Division of Allergy, Pulmonary, and Critical Care Medicine and served as a member of the Diversity Liaison Committee in the Department of Medicine at VICC. Massion was the principal investigator of several ongoing clinical trials; he authored more than 180 studies; and was well regarded as a mentor to junior faculty and students at all levels.
Among many career awards, Massion received the Patricia A. Stern Award from the LUNGevity Foundation, the ASCO Foundation Advanced Clinical Research Award in Lung Cancer, and the Damon Runyon Lilly Clinical Investigator Award. He was named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2015.
Massion became an AACR member in 1999. He attended many AACR meetings and was an invited speaker at several AACR Annual Meetings and Special Conferences. He was also program co-chair for the Fourth AACR-IASLC International Joint Conference: Lung Cancer Translational Science from the Bench to the Clinic in 2016.
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I remember Piere as I was his intern for multiple rotations at Mt. Zion. I found him to be the BEST instructor I ever had!!!!! My heart sank and I wish his family the best. We lost more than a doctor. We lost a great human being.
Pierre was a great friend, enthusiastic research and dedicated clinician. We are all so sorry about his passing. Pierre was always motivated to help everyone around him. We will miss his enthusiasm and graciousness.
I'm so sorry. My deepest condolences to his family.
Pierre was a great person and dedicated physician-scientist who worked diligently on the early detection of lung cancer. He will be missed and remembered for his hard work, dedication, mentorship, and friendship!