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July 17, 2017

2017: Mid-Year Update

2017 is flying by.

For a real-time update please join us for  our Annual Scientific Retreat this Thursday, July 20 in the Tinkham Veale University Center. Ramon Parsons, MD, PhD, Professor and Chairman, Oncological Sciences, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, will deliver a keynote presentation on "Causes and Consequences of PTEN Inactivation in Cancer." He discovered this oncogene and its function in carcinogenesis.  Immediately following, I will give a Director's Overview, followed by a student, trainee, postdoc poster presentation and reception.  This is always a nice event and a good way to catch up with your colleagues. Please register to attend - I hope to see you all there.
 
I cannot believe it is already past mid-July. I'd like to update you on what our Center has been up to. The first part of the year was heavily devoted to the submission of our competitive Cancer Center Support Grant renewal in late May.  Everyone in our Center contributed in some way to this monumental effort. Contributions from more than 60 members and staff wrote parts of the 2,850 page document and collected the incredible accomplishments of our members.

The submission creates a picture of our astonishing achievements that reflect discoveries leading to high impact publications, consideration of our patients, connection and improvements for our regional population, and intellectual property leading to new therapeutics. Our members have led national clinical trials resulting in practice-changing FDA approvals.  Our listing of publications in high impact journals continues to increase a reflection of the high quality of our collective contributions.  Despite these remarkable milestones, to tell our story took considerable effort on the part of many - faculty, lab members, the Clinical Trials Units, and physicians consenting patients to clinical trials. Even more, the collaborative spirit across institutions is palpable and something the NCI  views as critical to our Center.

Behind the scenes, Cancer Center administration worked tirelessly for months to pull it all together into a polished, seamless product that we are all immensely proud of. Their expertise and dedication was astounding.

The grant submission is not the end, however. Post-grant submission we shifted gears to start planning for our NCI Site Visit in October. We have already started drafting presentations, gathering updates on research, grants and publications, and compiling the necessary documentation for the big day.

To kick-off the site visit preparation, the leadership retreat on July 21 will go over Site Visit related-specifics and continue the planning process.  We have many, many meetings and practices scheduled over the next few months to ensure everyone is fully prepared for our Site Visit.

In between it all, we are still doing our day jobs!