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March 4, 2013


Stan Gerson, MD
Director, Case CCC


With regard to the sequester, we do not really know yet what the financial impact will be for the Cancer Center, nor for individual grants. Our CCSG scored as well as any this year, so we should be hit less, but until we have a notice of award we are in the dark.

We will start April operating at 50% budget. Our administration will identify the specific impact this will have on cores and salary support, and we will be establishing a budget based on these projections. However, until there is a notice of award, we will not know specifics.

Provocative Questions

Please note that the NCI has REISSUED eight RFAs on the provocative questions. These RFAs are viewed as a priority by Harold Varmus, so there is a relatively favorable pay line. In the first round, only 200 applications were submitted. Please refer to the provocative questions site and consider an R01 or R21 application for the June 20 submission deadline.

In addition, note the emphasis on big, outstanding questions in cancer. As your own research moves forward, this is the time to think of assessing key questions of impact rather than subtle questions in your research pathway.

Notes from the NCI Cancer Center Directors Annual Retreat

Last month's cancer center director annual retreat with Harold Varmus centered around the next generation of the The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA). While this program will end in a year, there is interest in additional samples. More importantly, there will be an upgrade in data availability. Our contact here, Dr. Jill Barnholtz-Sloan, can provide a primer on utilizing this database for genomic analysis. The collection of full genomics of most tumor types is without equal and can be used to mine many ideas linking genomic changes to pathophysiology.

Update on the Cancer Center Faculty Search

The Cancer Center continues to expand, and recruitment is an important aspect of broadening our collaborative efforts and research focus. As part of our strategic plan, we are focusing on these two areas. Dr. Li Li is leading the search for an expert in cancer disparities research at the associate or full professor level. Dr. Ruth Keri is leading the search in cancer biology and cancer genetics. Please contact them with names of individuals you think would be interested.


Sequestration Cuts Will Shortchange Students, Universities Say
Columbus Dispatch - Mar 2, 2013
... say could happen after President Barack Obama and congressional ... marketable products and services, said Robert Miller, vice president of ...

Whole-genome Sequencing Provides Hope for the Future of Cancer Care
Helio/HemOnc Today
Charis Eng, MD, PhD, chair of the Genomic Medicine Institute at the Cleveland Clinic, said genomic research "will serve as an infrastructural resource for all clinicians around the world."


Cleveland Magazine: Best Doctors

Congratulations to the many Cancer Center members who were rated by their peers as the "Best Doctors" in Northeast Ohio in the March 2013 issue of Cleveland Magazine. A full list of names by specialty is available in the print version of the issue. In addition, this year the magazine focused on cancer, and featured extended articles on the following members:

Delivering the News
Dr. Timothy O'Brien is the director of the MetroHealth Cancer Care Center and chief of the division of hematology and oncology. His diagnoses typically reveal gastrointestinal or blood cancers in adults...

Three Questions with Cancer Experts:
Dr. Charles Kunos first discovered he had a knack for anatomy during a seventh-grade science contest, but he never knew he'd one day be using that talent to target individual cancer cells hidden deep inside people's bodies...

Most doctors juggle more than medical charts. Just ask Dr. Stanton Gerson, the director of the University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center...

Dr. Lyndsay Harris, director of breast cancer research at University Hospitals Seidman Center, says studying the genetic sequencing of a person's tumor can result in more effective, personalized treatment plans...

Trial Blazers
An international phase III clinical trial led by Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute staff oncologist Dr. Brian Rini is working to determine whether a vaccine created by a German biotech firm can prolong the lives of advanced kidney-cancer patients already taking Sutent, the standard therapy drug. ...

A treatment option for patients who can't find a bone marrow donor, this new trial designed by Dr. Marcos de Lima, the head of stem-cell transplantation at University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center, uses a unit of uncultured cord blood and one of cord blood cultured to increase the stem cells...

The dreaded colon-cancer screening could become a lot less intimidating if Dr. Greg Cooper's stool DNA analysis method proves accurate...

Labor Issues
University Hospitals' Dr. Steven Waggoner saved a pregnant woman with cervical cancer and her baby...

New Dimensions
Armed with detailed 3-D mammograms, University Hospitals' Dr. Donna Plecha is taking the breast cancer fight to the next level...

Mind Games
Cleveland Clinic's Dr. Michael Vogelbaum has found a way to treat malignant brain tumors with a promising new gene therapy. ...

Breaking the Code
Dr. Charis Eng searches for the genetic markers that indicate the cancer risks hidden within us all. ...

Case CCC Protocol Templates Now Required

We have had a great success with our year-long run-in period of using Case CCC protocol templates for investigator-initiated studies. Effective immediately, Case CCC protocol templates are mandatory when developing investigator-initiated protocols, and must contain all protocol template elements and language. These requirements will be enforced by the Case CCC Protocol Review and Monitoring Committee at the time of protocol submission and review. In the event that one or more elements of a trial do not fit into the template (e.g., a surgical trial or Phase 0 trial), the protocol should still retain the section(s) with a "Not Applicable" entered.

The Case CCC protocol templates (short and long versions) are available on the Case CCC website. They may also be accessed through links on the Clinical Research Office or Clinical Trials Core Facility. If you have any questions about the templates, please contact Katarzyna Karelus at 216.844.4176 or


Specialized Program of Research Excellence in Gastrointestinal Malignancies (GI SPORE)

All Faculty members are invited to submit outlines for pilot projects to be funded by the NIH P50 GI SPORE. Proposals must be submitted through CTSC Webgrants. Please note that a SPORE project must be directed toward translational research of a GI malignancy. At least one specific aim should involve either direct patient contact or the study of patient derived tissue samples.

More information on grant application is available at or through John Pounardjian,, 216.368.1976. Information is also posted on the CWRU GI SPORE website.

Deadline: April 1

Computational Genomic Epidemiology of Cancer Postdoctoral Training Program

The Case CCC invites applications to its 2-3 year NCI-funded Computational Genomic Epidemiology of Cancer Postdoctoral Training Program. The program combines a mentored cancer research project designed by the fellow in collaboration with their mentors with a specialized curriculum of formal didactic training and individualized longitudinal curriculum.

This program is designed to prepare trainees for careers as independent investigators engaged in research at the intersection of cancer research, genetics, epidemiology, biostatistics and computer science. Cancer researchers obtaining training will have the skills vital to decipher the complex pathways comprising genetic and environmental risk factors for disease, and will ultimately be able to provide clinicians and their patients with valuable information for the prevention and treatment of cancer.

Candidates with an MD, PhD, or MD/PhD degree, strong quantitative skills, and an interest in a career in genetics research are encouraged to apply.


Breast Cancer Program in Development Annual Retreat

Drs. William Schiemann and Lyndsay Harris, Co-Leaders of the Breast Cancer Program in Development, invite you to attend the program Annual Retreat on Monday, March 11from 9 am-5:30 pm in the Dively Building on CWRU campus. The agenda is available on the Cancer Center website. Register today.

Melanoma Mini-Symposium

The Cleveland Melanoma Research Consortium, a new collaboration among basic researchers and clinicians at CWRU, UH, Cleveland Clinic, and VA Medical Center, is pleased to announce a mini-symposium devoted to melanoma research on Monday, March 11 from 3-7 pm in the Wolstein Research Building Auditorium.

This mini-symposium will provide a forum for physician scientists and biomedical researchers to foster communication and develop new collaborations on melanoma research. Research presentations will be organized around the following topics: Therapeutics/Drug Discovery, Cell Signaling and Environmental Effects, Immunology, and Epidemiology. Anyone in the Cancer Center community with an interest in melanoma research is encouraged to participate.

This event is sponsored by the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, Skin Disease Research Center, and Department of Dermatology at Case Western Reserve University. A box meal will be provided. Please RSVP by Wednesday, March 6. The agenda is available on the Cancer Center website.


Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation Pediatric Oncology Student Training Program
Deadline: March 4

Childhood Brain Tumor Foundation
Deadline: March 12

American Society of Hematology Harold Amos Medical Faculty Development Program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Deadline: March 14

Doris Duke Innovations in Clinical Research Award
LOI Deadline: March 14
Proposal Deadline: May 13

(LOI Deadline: February 18)
Application Deadline: April 5

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

Case CCC Protocol Specific Research Support (PSRS)
Deadline: Open

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

International Waldenstrom's Macroglobulinemia Foundation (IWMF) Research Grant Program
Application Deadline: Open

James S. McDonnell Foundation Collaborative Activity Awards
Deadline: Open

NCI Short-Term Scientist Exchange Program
Application Deadline: Open

SAIC-Frederick Support of the Cancer Genome Atlas Program
Application Deadline: Open

Solving Kids' Cancer Therapeutic Development Initiative
Application Deadline: Open

NIH BULLETIN – Notices and Funding Opportunities

National Science Foundation - National Institutes of Health NSF-NIH Interagency Initiative: Smart and Connected Health (NOT-OD-13-041)

Notice of Correction to PAR-12-286, Revisions for Early-Stage Development of Informatics Technology (R01)(NOT-CA-13-006)

Short-term Mentored Career Enhancement Awards in the Basic Behavioral and Social Sciences: Cross-Training at the Intersection of Animal Models and Human Investigation (K18)

Understanding and Promoting Health Literacy (R01)(PAR-13-130)

Understanding and Promoting Health Literacy (R03)(PAR-13-131)

Understanding and Promoting Health Literacy (R21)(PAR-13-132)

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!

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March 4

Pathology Research Seminar Series
Scott Emr, PhD
Frank Rhodes Professor, Molecular Biology & Genetics
Cornell University
Topic: Protein Quality Control at the Plasma Membrane – Essential Role of the ESCRT Machinery and an Arrestin-ubiqutin-ligase Adaptor
12 pm WRB 1-413

Physiology and Biophysics Seminar
Richard Youle, PhD
Senior Investigator, Surgical Neurology Branch, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
National Institutes of Health
Topic: The Role of E3 Ligase Parkin and the Kinase PINK1 in Mitophagy and Parkinson's Disease
4 pm SOM / Robbins Building, E-501

March 5

Radiation Oncology Grand Rounds
Gisele Pereira, MS
Medical Physicist, Radiation Oncology
Topic: Motion Management in Radiation Therapy, Part I
8:10 am Lerner B-181

Cancer Biology Seminar
Dipali Date, PhD
Research Fellow, Summers Lab, Cancer Biology
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Regulation of p31 Comet by RB Controls Cellular Proliferation
11 am NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic

Medicine Grand Rounds
Stefan Gravenstein, MD, MPH
Professor, Div. of Geriatrics
Topic: Inflammation, Aging and Influenza (or The Story of Ma Pampo)
12 pm Kulas Auditorium, Lakeside 5th Fl.

March 6

Hematology and Oncology Division Research Conference
Topic: TBD
8 am Lerner B-151

Global Approaches Driving Biological Discovery Symposium Series
Robert Edwards, PhD
Associate Professor, Computer Science and Biology
San Diego State University and Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Topic: Computational Analysis of Metagenomes
10 am WRB 1-413

Biomedical Engineering Special Guest Lecturer
Bjorn R. Olsen, MD, PhD
Hersey Professor of Cell Biology
Dean for Research, Harvard School of Dental Medicine
Harvard University
Topic: Roles of Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor in Mesenchymal Stem Cell Differentiation
11 am NA1-139 Cleveland Clinic

Cancer Center Faculty Candidate
Michael Wendt, PhD
Senior Research Associate, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center
Topic: Targeting Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition to Prevent Breast Cancer Metastasis
12 pm WRB 3-136

Immunology Students/Fellows Research in Progress Seminar Series
Gospel Enyindah-Asonye
Graduate Student, Gupta Lab, Immunology
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Investigating the Role of MYO18A in B Cell Immune Response
Tomasz Herjan
Post Doctoral Fellow, Li Lab, Immunology
Topic: HuR is Required for IL-17-Induced Act1-Mediated mRNA Stabilization
12 pm NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic

Global Approaches Driving Biological Discovery Symposium Series
Robert Edwards, PhD
Associate Professor, Computer Science and Biology
San Diego State University and Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
Topic: Global Evolution of Vibrio Cholerae, Viruses and Biological Dark Matter
4 pm WRB 1-413

Skeletal Research Center Seminar
Gerjo van Osch, PhD
Professor, Erasmus MC
University Medical Center Rotterdam
Topic: Cartilage Regeneration: How to Use Stem Cells
4 pm Millis 123

GI SPORE Journal Club
Yogen Saunthararajah, MD
Associate Professor, Hematologic Oncology and Blood Disorders
CWRU/Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Journal Club
5:30 pm Lerner B-151

March 7

Medicine Grand Rounds
Michael DeGeorgia, MD
Professor, Neurology
Director, Center for Neurological Care
Director, Center for Music and Medicine
Co-Director, Cerebrovascular Center Neurological Institute
Topic: Cleveland, Rock and Roll, and the Legacy of University Hospitals
12 pm Kulas Auditorium, Lakeside 5th Fl.

March 8

Cancer Center Research in Progress canceled

Hematology/Oncology Fellows Conference/Curriculum Series
Topic: TBD
8 am Wearn 137/Breen Conference Rm.

Taussig Cancer Institute Grand Rounds
Lynn Wilson, MD, MPH
Professor, Therapeutic Radiology and of Dermatology
Vice Chairman, Therapeutic Radiology
Yale Cancer Center
Topic: Cutaneous Lymphoma and Radiotherapy
8 am R3/002-003 Cleveland Clinic

Special Seminar
Savita Dhanvantari, PhD
Assistant Professor, Medical Biophysics & Medicine
Scientist, Lawson Health Research Institute
University of Western Ontario
Topic: Molecular Imaging of Beta Cell Mass: Can We See Islets Clearly Now?
11 am Wood Bldg W-428

Cancer Center Seminar Series
Joe W. Gray, PhD
Gordon Moore Endowed Chair, Department of Biomedical Engineering
Director, OHSU Center for Spatial Systems Biomedicine
Associate Director for Translational Research
OHSU Knight Cancer Institute
Topic: System Approaches to Breast Cancer Management
12 pm BRB 105

Case CCC Calendar

LRI Calendar


Breast Cancer Program in Development Annual Retreat
March 11
9 am-5:30 pm Dively Building

Melanoma Mini-Symposium
March 11
3-7 pm Wolstein Research Building

IMPACT: Improving Sickle Cell Patient Adherence Through Collaborative Teaching
March 23
Wolstein Research Building

Breast Cancer Conference
May 17
Hilton Cleveland East

Impact of Genomics on Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment: Open Drug Policy Forum
June 24
9 am - 3 pm Wolstein Research Building

Annual Cancer Center Scientific Retreat
July 11-12


National GvHD Health Symposium
November 1