Skip to Main Content
CWRU Links

2011 Articles

February 21, 2011

Date Released: 21 February 2011
News Banner


Brain Tumor Initiative

The Cancer Center leadership is interested in promoting the wonderful depth and breadth of research that takes place in the area of brain tumors. Those of you who have been on campus for a few years recognize a few stops and starts. Now we mean it.

Having "launched" the breast cancer program in development, we are now keen to pursue the brain tumor initiative. I fully expect this successful effort to lead to more integration of science, Cancer Center supported pilot grants leading to multi investigator efforts, PPG and a SPORE that validate the quality and uniqueness of the research efforts we have. This will lead to designation as a scientific program in the Case CCC in about 2014. To this end, I have askedCandece Gladson and Jill Barnholtz-Sloan to outline a program and scientific focus groups: Brain Tumor Initiative.

Please review, offer your comments, and participate in the upcoming series of meetings to develop this initiative! Please contact Kristin Waite with any questions.

There is no reason our group can not be recognized as a leader in the country. Thanks for your involvement!

News from the NCI Cancer Center Directors Retreat

At the recent retreat for the NCI Cancer Center Directors held Friday, February 18, Harold Varmus offered a number of important perspectives.

First, there was discussion about the organization of cooperative groups. I have asked our leaders of cooperative group efforts and individuals who lead committees at ECOG, GOG and SWOG to participate in a conference call about how cancer centers, and in particular our cancer center, can advise on the reorganization structure.

Second, there was discussion and presentation around the topic of community outreach activity of cancer centers, which takes place in a number of different ways. All of them impact where we should be thinking soon, and certainly in time for our renewable application. For instance, Moffitt has now has engaged with 18 different centers for tissue and data collection for all cancer types. UNC is advertising the fact it is providing videoconferencing for five of the major cancer diseases. UPMC uses via oncology to develop a strong database for both local practice and clinical trials, and is also tracking deviations from standard therapy.

More than half of NCI-designated cancer centers have grants that promote collaborative interactions with community cancer centers. In some cases these are with minority institutions, in others, they are simply high quality nonaligned community hospitals with active cancer programs. This offers us the opportunity to be much more responsive to RFAs for the next new community-based activities that come out from NCI. It is also an opportunity for us to be more involved with our community sites and to identify them as partners for tissue collection, clinical management, and clinical trials research. We are a consortium, which could uniquely provide interaction to a very large proportion of the patient population around Cleveland.

Third, there was discussion about dissemination of important new advances in cancer research and cancer therapeutics. We all read these publications as they come out, and often times we hear about them at national meetings. They are sometimes reflected in the NCI Cancer Bulletin. However, it is infrequent for us to comment upon them on our website or in our newsletters. I have asked my administrative staff to make a point of doing so with publicly available information. Likewise, I would ask that you bring to our attention important new advances by sending an email

Fourth, there was considerable discussion regarding the current status of the NCI budget. It is tough times indeed, and under these certain circumstances a number of contingencies have been made. For instance, only up to the 7th percentile will be funded, and thereafter between the 8th and 15th percentile program officers will make the determination of which grants to prioritize. Thus, it is critical to get to know your program officer.

If there is some loosening of the budget, it will allow for retention of more SPORE grants. In addition, cancer centers could experience as much as a 5% cut in noncompetitive renewal funding. This is totally dependent on the budgets. On the other hand, even with budget reductions, the outlook next year may not be quite as bad because current ARRA funding obligations will disappear.

Dr. Varmus had two additional comments about involvement between cancer center investigators and the NCI. First, the NCI sponsors a number of programs and would like cancer centers to participate in their public meetings. Examples include clinical trials improvement, CTEP, the translational research initiative, biorepository research, and the re-organization of CaBig. In addition, he is very excited about the response he has received regarding the provocative questions in cancer. (See the Provocative Questions websiteand proposed question page). He has had a number of open forum discussions, actively reviews the website, and is interested in additional comments and perspectives. Take note that this could easily become the nidus for the next generation of new RFA announcements.

Might I suggest you take the time to look at the information on the postings, register, and submit your own provocative idea. If you would like to send me a copy of your posting, terrific!

Finally, Dr. Varmus appeared to be doing a terrific job balancing the need for basic investigation with application and therapeutic investigation. He spoke a good deal about a molecular driven therapeutics. Thus while we all value highly basic investigation, it is the time to link this to human disease and the therapeutic potential.

Stan Gerson, MD
Director, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center


Cleveland Clinic Geneticist Takes Part in Testing of Abraham Lincoln's DNA
Plain Dealer (blog) - Feb 21, 2011
For more than a year the channel filmed Dr. John Sotos, a professor at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, as he worked with Dr. Charis Eng of the Cleveland Clinic to answer whether or not Lincoln may have had a rare form of cancer ...

Gene Test for Prostate Cancer in the Works
WebMD - Feb 18, 2011
"The biggest challenge with newly diagnosed prostate cancer is deciding what to do for men with low-grade, non-aggressive tumors on biopsy," says Eric Klein, MD, chairman of the Glickman Urological and Kidney Institute at Cleveland Clinic. ...

XMRV: Study Shows Virus Can Cause 'Persistent Infection' in Monkeys
Wall Street Journal (blog) - Feb 17, 2011
"The virus causes chronic, persistent infection," says Robert Silverman of the Cleveland Clinic, a co-author of the paper, which was published online yesterday in the Journal of Virology. Moreover, the new research suggests that in these monkeys, ...Researchers looking at what happens after XMRV infection in people also needed an animal model and monkeys are "about as close as we can get to what happens in humans," says Eric Klein, a Cleveland Clinic prostate-cancer surgeon who was also involved ...

Soda Coloring Ingredient Linked to Cancer
AOL Health - Feb 17, 2011
"There are natural alternatives," Dr. Stan Gerson, director of University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center, told AOL Health. "It's hard to make the case when you have some clear carcinogenic data in animals why you'd want to use this as a food additive. ...

Red Wine Boosts Drug for Breast Cancer, Study Says
Fox News - Feb 15, 2011
..."Rapamycin has been used in clinical trials as a cancer treatment. Unfortunately, after a while, the cancer cells develop resistance to rapamycin," (Charis) Eng said in a press release...

University Hospitals Studies FDA-approved 3-D Mammography System
Plain Dealer - Feb 14, 2011
UH became a study site when company representatives met with hospital physicians a little more than a year ago, during the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America, says radiologist Dr. Donna Plecha, UH's director of breast imaging...


Cancer Center Seminar Series: MicroRNAs in Breast Cancer


Friday, February 25
12-1 pm
Frohring Auditorium - BRB 105

Please join us Friday, February 25 at the next Cancer Center Seminar Series featuring Cheryl Thompson, PhD. Dr. Thompson, Assistant Professor of Family Medicine, will presentMicroRNAs in Breast Cancer.

Dr. Thompson received her PhD in Genetic and Molecular Epidemiology from Case Western Reserve University. She was a postdoctoral fellow in the Computational Genomic Epidemiology of Cancer (CoGEC) program under guidance of Dr. Robert Elston and is currently predominantly supported through the National Cancer Institute.

Dr. Thompson's primary research interests are in the identification of genetic and molecular factors influencing risk of cancer as well as factors associated with prognosis and treatment outcomes. Her current major research projects include the identification of inherited variation influencing risk of breast cancer and mammographic density. Additional projects have begun to investigate the role of microRNAs in breast cancer detection, risk and prognosis, as well as response to common breast cancer therapies. She is also working on a project to study the ability of circulating microRNAs to discriminate between patients with benign and malignant pulmonary nodules.

Cancer Imaging Program Cellular Imaging Focus Group "Mini Talk"

The leaders of the Cancer Imaging Program invite you to attend a Cellular Imaging Focus Group "Mini Talk", Monday, February 28 at 3:30 pm in Wearn B-37. Drs. David Wilson, Zhenghong Lee and Alex Huang are featured presenters. All are welcome and encouraged to attend. Please contact Drs. Zhenghong Lee ( or James Basilion ( for more information.

9th Annual Midwest Blood Club Symposium

The Midwest Blood Club will hold its 9th Annual SymposiumApril 21-22 at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center in Cincinnati.

Since 2003, this meeting has been organized to foster greater communication between hematology/oncology investigators within the Midwest region by creating a forum where researchers can meet and share ideas and data on stem cell biology, transplantation, cell/gene therapy, leukemogenesis, and immunotherapy. The meeting will be composed of invited presentations from investigators, as well as selected presentations from students and postdoctoral/clinical fellows. Both oral and poster presentations will be selected from the abstracts submitted by the April 1 deadline. A banquet will be held on Thursday night for all the participants.

ONCOMINE Tutorial/Workshop

The third hands-on Oncomine computer Tutorial/Workshop is scheduled for Friday, February 25 from 2-3 pm in NA5-03 of the Lerner Research Institute. All are welcome to attend this introduction to the Oncomine Database, even if you would simply like to learn more. Prior to attending, participants should register an account at using their "" or "" login. Please bring their own laptop or be prepared to share with a friend. Contact Patrick Leahywith any questions.


iMedRIS Training

New cancer research protocols requiring IRB review will be submitted, reviewed and stored electronically using the Case Cancer IRB electronic, web-based submission and review database provided by iMedRIS™ Data Corporation.

Part 4 (How to Respond to Stipulations) and Part 5 (How to submit Amendments) of the iMedRIS™ training sessions will be offered through February. All interactive training will be accessible online using Adobe Acrobat Connect and telephone conference line and can be accessed at personal workstations.

For more information or to download training guides, please visit the iRIS Training Page. To register, please contact Mariesa Malinowski or Mark Tennant.



**All events are open to anyone interested in attending

February 21

Pathology Research Seminar
Bingcheng Wang, PhD
Associate Professor, Pharmacology
Topic: Turning Sword into Plowshare: Targeting EphA2 Kinase in Malignant Diseases
12 pm WRB 1-413

Physiology and Biophysics Seminar
Robert London, PhD
Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Group
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, NIH
Topic: Recent NMR Studies of DNA Polymerases: Pol β and HIV Reverse Transcriptase
4 pm SOM E501

February 22

Cancer Biology Invited Speaker Seminar
Dean Bacich, PhD
Assistant Professor, Urology
University of Pittsburgh
Topic: PSMA and Dietary Folate Modulate Prostate Cancer
Denise O'Keefe, PhD
Assistant Professor, Urology
University of Pittsburgh
Topic: Dietary Folate and Epigenetic Regulation in the Prostate
11 am NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic

Immunology Seminar
Roxana Rojas, MD
Assistant Professor, Medicine
Topic: Immune Regulation Outside the Box: Mycobacterium Tuberculosis Directly Controls T Cell Function
12 pm WRB 1-413

Taussig Cancer Institute Core Curriculum Series
Jaroslaw Maciejewski, MD, PhD
Professor, Hematology & Medical Oncology
CWRU/ Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Aplastic Anemia
12 pm R3-002 Cleveland Clinic

February 23

Hematology and Oncology Division Research Conference
Alvin Schmaier, MD
Professor, Medicine-Hem/Onc
Topic: What is Beauty– From the Prolylcarboxypeptidase Perspective
8 am Lerner Tower B-151

Department of Immunology Faculty Research in Progress Seminar
Paul Fox, PhD
Professor, Cell Biology
CWRU/Cleveland Clinic
Topic: The GAIT System: A Gatekeeper of Inflammatory Gene Expression
12 pm NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic

DNA Repair Inhibition Journal Club
Tomas Radivoyevitch, PhD
Assistant Professor, Epidemiology and Biostatistics
Topic: An Integrated Pharmacokinetic –Pharmacodynamic Model for an Aurora Kinase Inhibitor
2 pm SOM W331

February 25

Hematology/Oncology Fellows
Tycel Phillips, MD
Fellow, Div. of Hem/Onc
Topic: Reduced Intensity Treatment in Early Stage Hodgkin's Lymphoma
8 am Wearn 137

Taussig Cancer Institute Grand Rounds
Guilherme Oliveira, MD
Staff, Cardiovascular Medicine
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Cardiology-Oncology Partnership: Ave Doctors, We Who Are About to Live Salute Thee!
8 am R3/002-003 Cleveland Clinic

Cancer Center Seminar Series
Cheryl Thompson, PhD
Assistant Professor, Family Medicine
Topic: MicroRNAs in Breast Cancer
12 pm BRB 105

Cancer Center Research in Progress Seminar
Hong Zheng, PhD
Qu Lab, Medicine-Hem/Onc
Topic: An Oncogenic Activating Mutation in Tyrosine Phosphatase PTPN11 Induces Aberrant Brain Development by Hyperactivation of Neural Stem Cells
4 pm WRB 3-136

Case CCC Calendar

LRI Calendar


Breast Cancer Detection and Management: Issues for 2011
May 20
Hilton Cleveland East
Details to follow

Case CCC Annual Scientific Retreat
July 8-9
Details to follow


Active Living Research Annual Conference
February 22-24
San Diego, CA

14th Annual Meeting of the Translational Research Cancer Centers Consortium 2011
February 24-26
Seven Springs Mountain Resort, Seven Springs, PA

Multilevel Interventions in Health Care: Building the Foundation for Future Research Goals
March 4-5
Las Vegas, Nevada

4th Annual Biospecimen Research Network (BRN) Symposium: Advancing Cancer Research Through Biospecimen Science
March 28-29
Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center in Bethesda, Maryland

Fourth Annual Translational to Clinical (T2C) Wound Care Conference
April 8-9
Ohio Union, Ohio State University, Columbus

2011 Clinical and Translational Research and Education Meeting: ACRT/SCTS Joint Annual Meeting
April 27-29
Omni Shoreham in Washington, DC
Abstract Deadline: December 16

Cincinnati Cancer Symposium Series: 2011 Symposium on NF-κB, Cancer, Obesity, and Inflammation
May 1-4
Westin Hotel Cincinnati

4th International Symposium on Cancer Metastasis and the Lymphovascular System
May 12-14
New York City
Abstract Submission Deadline: March 15

International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) Annual Meeting
June 15-18
Toronto, Canada

Cancer Health Disparities Summit 2011
July 13-15
Bethesda North Marriott Hotel in Rockville, Maryland

8th International Conference of the Society for Integrative Oncology
November 10-12
InterContinental Hotel Cleveland


ASCO Medical Student Rotation
Deadline: February 21

ASCO Resident Travel Award
Deadline: February 21

Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF)-Honorable A. David Mazzone Special Challenge Award Research Program
Deadline: February 24

Prevent Cancer Foundation
Deadline: February 28

Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Translational Research Program
Mandatory LOI Deadline: March 1
Full Application Deadline: March 15

Cancer Research Institute Investigator Award
Deadline: March 1

Lustgarten Foundation Spring 2011: Translational Research Innovator Awards
Concept Proposal Deadline: March 14
Full Application Deadline: May 2

James S. McDonnell Foundation 21st Century Science Research Awards
Deadline: March 15

Lymphoma Research Foundation Mantle Cell Lymphoma (MCL) Exploratory/Developmental Grant
Deadline: March 17

Follicular Lymphoma Research Initiative Clinical Studies Grant
Deadline: March 17

Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation 2011 Research Fellow Award Program
Deadline: March 29

National CENter for ReGenerAtive Medicine UnderGraduate StudEnt (ENGAGE) Summer Program
Deadline: March 31

Avon Foundation Breast Cancer Research Program
Cycle 2 LOI Deadline: May 6
Cycle 2 Full Proposal Deadline: July 5

Lustgarten Foundation Fall 2011: Basic Research Innovator Awards
Concept Proposal Deadline: September 14
Full Application Deadline: October 31

Translational Technology Concept Studies of Circulating Tumor and Endothelial Cells (CTC/CEC)
Deadline: Open

AACR Scholar-in-Training Awards - Other Conferences and Meetings
Deadline: Open

International Union Against Cancer (UICC) International Cancer Technology Transfer Fellowships
Application Deadline: Open

NCI Short-Term Scientist Exchange Program
Application Deadline: Open

James S. McDonnell Foundation Collaborative Activity Awards
Application Deadline: Open

NIH BULLETIN – Notices and Funding Opportunities

Modification of the Biographical Sketch in NIH Grant Application Forms (PHS 398, PHS 2590, and the SF 424 R&R) to Permit a Description of Factors that may have Reduced Productivity (NOT-OD-11-045)

National Cancer Institute Participation in the NIH Parent Program Announcement for Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards for Individual Postdoctoral Fellows (PA-11-113) (NOT-CA-11-008)

Request for Information (RFI): Input on Strategies for Leveraging Existing Health Data Linked to New or Existing Bio-specimen Repositories for Large Scale Epidemiology Research (NOT-RM-11-008)

Childhood Cancer Survivor Study (CCSS)(Limited Competition U24) (RFA-CA-11-501)

Produced by:
Gillian Irwin Todd
11100 Euclid Avenue, Wearn 149
Cleveland, Ohio 44106-5065
216-844-8317 phone
216-844-7832 fax


If you have a new grant, recently won an award, or have other newsworthy items, please let us know so we can publicize them in the newsletter and other media outlets. You deserve the accolades!

Send items to