MESSAGE FROM THE DIRECTOR
Stan Gerson, MD
Director, Case CCC
Cancer Center Annual Scientific Retreat
Dear Cancer Center Members:
Later this week, July 10-11, we will host our Annual Cancer Center Scientific Retreat. The agenda is filled with interesting, never-before-heard talks and top-notch science. In addition, there will be time to not only meet new members and form new collaborations, but also attend program meetings and provide input on how to spend our discretionary support in pilot projects in the coming year. This is your chance to have your opinion heard.
As we lead up to the retreat, here are some goals for this important two-day event:
New research initiatives
Areas ripe for collaborative cross-programmatic research
Ways to enhance the function and value of the scientific programs
Where do you want to go?
Provide input on...
New investments, directions, recruitments, core support
Translational research opportunities given the new realities of limited support for clinical investigation
Finally, I would like to give one final reminder that the retreat kicks off the afternoon of Thursday, July 10 in the Wolstein Research Building with the introduction of new members and a keynote address by UCSF researcher Dr. Kevin Shannon, who will discuss his Ras research. Friday's event will be held at Corporate College East on Richmond Road.
I hope to see you all there. If you have not already registered, please do so immediately so we can plan for your attendance.
CASE CCC IN THE NEWS
The Doctor Gets V.I.P. Treatment
New York Times - Jul 3, 2014
After a biking accident, Dr. Mikkael Sekeres, Director of the Leukemia Program at the Cleveland Clinic and member of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center in Ohio talks about his experience of going from doctor to patient.
Bone Marrow Tx Promising in Adult Sickle Cell
MedPage Today - Jul 2, 2014
Bone marrow transplantation with reduced intensity, nonmyeloablative conditioning cured many adults with severe sickle cell disease, updated results from a pilot study affirmed...Also, "by incorporating the drug sirolimus into the transplant conditioning regimen, they created a state of 'mixed chimerism' in which donor and host cells coexist in tolerance and harmony, to simultaneously solve the problems of graft-rejection and graft-versus-host disease," noted Yogen Saunthararajah, MD, of the Cleveland Clinic and Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, who called the procedure "already a game-changer."
Study Finds Increased Risk of Febrile Neutropenia with Several Comorbid Conditions
Consultant 360 - June 24, 2014
Patients with a history of several comorbid conditions may be at an increased risk of chemotherapy-induced febrile neutropenia, according to a recent study. The study, published online June 10 in "Annals of Oncology," found that people with a history of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), congestive heart failure, HIV infection, autoimmune disease, peptic ulcer disease, renal disease, thyroid disorder, or bone marrow suppression may be at higher risk of febrile neutropenia during the first cycle of chemotherapy...Dr. Mikkael Sekeres, Director of the Leukemia Program at the Cleveland Clinic and member of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center in Ohio, told Reuters Health, "The authors have identified 20 comorbid conditions that they were going to explore for an association with a higher rate of fever neutropenia. If you are looking at 20 factors, by chance alone, at the 5% mark you are going to find one of them has a significant association."
RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS/MEMBER NEWS
PDX Pilot Awardees
The following teams of researchers have been selected to receive Cancer Center pilot funding to develop patient-derived tumor xenografts (PDX) to benefit collaborative, multi-investigator projects within the Center, with special emphasis on tumor types of high value to members. The Cancer Center received five applications of which three are awarded:
Development of a Breast and Ovarian Cancer Patient-Derived Xenograft Resource
PI: Mark Jackson, PhD
Investigator Team: Analisa DiFeo, Hannah Gilmore, Lyndsay Harris, Efstathios Karathanasis, Ruth Keri, Huiping Liu, Goutham Narla, Raymond Redline, Bill Schiemann, Nicole Steinmetz.
Establishment of a Patient Derived Primary Xenograft Model of Lung Cancer
PI: Neelesh Sharma, MD, PhD
Investigator Team: Afshin Dowlati, Goutham Narla, George Stark
Development of human orthotopic brain metastasis xenografts (hOBMX) derived from breast, lung, and melanoma (BLM) brain metastasis
PI: Andrew Sloan, MD
Investigator Team: Marta Couce, Eli Bar
Dr. Anant Madabhushi Awarded Phase II Coulter Grant on Brain Tumor
Dr. Pallavi Tiwari, PI, and Dr. Anant Madabhushi, Co-I, at the Center for Computational Imaging and Personalized Diagnostics (CCIPD) in Biomedical Engineering have been awarded a Phase II Coulter award on their project NeuroRadVision™: Image based risk assessment for presence of recurrent tumor or radiation effects on MRI. The $130,000 project is a continuation of the Phase I award for identifying quantitative sub-visual MRI markers to distinguish radiation necrosis from recurrent brain tumors, currently a challenging problem in clinical management of brain tumor patients.
Drs. Lisa Rogers (Neuro-oncologist), Leo Wolansky (Neuro-radiologist), and Mark Cohen (Neuro-pathologist), all from University Hospitals Case Medical Center, will continue to serve as clinical co-investigators on the project.
Family of Proteins Plays Key Role in Cellular Pump Dynamics
Case Western Reserve University scientists have discoveredhow a family of proteins–cation diffusion facilitators (CDFs)–regulates an important cellular cycle, where a cell's energy generated is converted to necessary cellular functions. The finding has the potential to inform future research aimed at identifying ways to ensure the process works as designed and, if successful, could lead to significant breakthroughs in the treatment of Parkinson's, chronic liver disease and heart disease.
The results of this research were posted online June 22 by the journal "Nature" and will be published in the print edition at a later date.
"CDF is a major protein family type found in all forms of life," said senior author Mark R. Chance, the Charles W. and Iona A. Mathias Professor of Cancer Research in the School of Medicine. "Mutations or altered regulation of human CDFs modify the concentrations of metal ions critical to cell function and are associated with key human diseases, including those affecting endocrine, neurologic, hepatic and cardiovascular systems."
Case Western Reserve University Researchers and Collaborators Receive $12.6 Million NIH Grant to Study Genetics of Alzheimer's Disease
Researchers from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine are part of a five-university collaboration receiving a $12.6 million, four-year grant from the National Institute on Aging (NIA), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), to identify rare genetic variants that may either protect against, or contribute to Alzheimer's disease risk.
At Case Western Reserve School of Medicine, the Consortium for Alzheimer's Sequence Analysis (CASA) is led by Jonathan Haines, PhD, chair of the department of epidemiology & biostatistics and director of the Institute for Computational Biology. Fellow Case Western Reserve investigator is William Bush, PhD, assistant professor of epidemiology and biostatistics.
CASA investigators will analyze whole exome and whole genome sequence data generated during the first phase of the NIH Alzheimer's Disease Sequencing Program, an innovative collaboration that began in 2012 between NIA and the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), also part of NIH. They will analyze data from 6,000 volunteers with Alzheimer's disease and 5,000 older individuals who do not have the disease. In addition, they will study genomic data from 111 large families with multiple members who have Alzheimer's disease, mostly of Caucasian and Caribbean Hispanic descent to identify rare genetic variants.
2014 Grant Writers Coaching Group for NIH Awards
Faculty members who are working on a National Institutes of Health (NIH) Career Development K or R grant proposals and need additional support are invited to apply for the 2014 Grant Writers Coaching Group for NIH Awards, being held September 5 in Vancouver. This one-day workshop (followed by three months of optional online sessions and support) is designed to provide practical knowledge, skills, and one-on-one guidance to submit a competitive proposal.
Deadline: July 10
Clinical Investigator Development Program
The Center for Cancer Research (CCR), a Division of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), National Institutes of Health (NIH), Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), is pleased to announce its annual call for applications for the Clinical Investigator Development Program (CIDP). This is an exciting training opportunity intended for physicians interested in dedicating their careers to clinical research.
The CIDP assists board-eligible/board-certified translational researchers to transition from a mentored position to that of independent investigator in either laboratory-based or patient-oriented research in academia or comparable positions in government and industry. Potential areas of interest include: medical oncology, pediatric hematology-oncology, radiation oncology, surgical oncology, pathology, neuro-oncology, urology and dermatology. Program objectives are to: develop competence and skills in study design, protocol development and patient-oriented research; acquire knowledge related to the ethical and regulatory issues of conducting clinical research involving human subjects; gain direct experience with the collection and management of research data; and learn about function, development, organization and leadership of a multidisciplinary clinical research team.
Candidates may be U.S. citizens, permanent residents or possess (or be eligible for) the appropriate work visa and must have successfully completed subspecialty training at a U.S.–accredited institution in appropriate fields.
Deadline: October 31
MARK YOUR CALENDARS
NCRM Cancer Stem Cell Conference
The first CWRU: National Center for Regenerative Medicine Cancer Stem Cell Conference will be held in Cleveland, August 17-20, 2014. This conference is guaranteed to have incredible research from a variety of backgrounds in the Cancer Stem Cell field, and will feature keynote speakers from over 25 different institutions from around the world.
PREVIOUSLY ANNOUNCED OPPORTUNITIES
DoD Prostate Cancer Research Program Prostate Cancer Pathology Resource Network Award
DoD Prostate Cancer Research Program Collaborative Undergraduate Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Student Summer Training Program Award
NIH BULLETIN – Notices and Funding Opportunities
Notice of National Cancer Institute (NCI) Participation in PAR-14-225 "Clinical Evaluation of Adjuncts to Opioid Therapies for the Treatment of Chronic Pain (R01)"(NOT-CA-14-050)
Request for Information (RFI): National Longitudinal Study of Neurodevelopmental Consequences of Substance Use (NOT-DA-14-014)
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