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September 22, 2014


Cancer Research and Other Medical Funding is Hurt by Congress's Budget Games
The Plain Dealer - Sept 16, 2014
Cancer survivors, their relatives, physicians and supporters will fan across Capitol Hill today to urge Congress to do something it has no intention of doing right now: Providing substantially more money for cancer research, including clinical trials of promising drugs and treatments. Congress instead plans to pass a temporary measure to take effect Oct. 1 with no or minimal spending increases. Congress may consider spending hikes in December, but only once its political makeup for 2015 is clear.

This does not mean that Congress will or won't eventually cut or raise the amount of money it already provides for medical research at centers like Case Western Reserve University, University Hospitals and the Cleveland Clinic. And the timing of Congress's budget dance is only slightly coincidental with the fact that Dr. Stanton Gerson, director of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Seidman Cancer Center, came to Washington to participate in Cancer Lobby Day, sponsored by the American Cancer Society's advocacy group, the Cancer Action Network...

Baldness and Prostate Cancer: Latest study offers more evidence to link the two conditions
The Plain Dealer- Sept 16, 2014
The latest study to suggest a link between male pattern baldness and prostate cancer shows men with moderate male pattern baldness by age 45 at increased risk of developing aggressive prostate cancer later in life, compared to men who were not bald. The study, paid for by the National Cancer Institute, was published Monday in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, a publication of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. According to the researchers who conducted the analysis, it is the largest of its kind to date, and one of a few to differentiate between aggressive and non-aggressive prostate cancers...But a Cleveland Clinic urologist who was not involved in the research says it wouldn't hurt for men who have noticeable male pattern baldness to be screened for prostate cancer. One of the criticisms often leveled at prostate-specific antigen, or PSA, blood tests is that they aren't focused on high-risk populations, said Dr. Eric Klein, chairman of the Clinic's Glickman Urological & Kidney Institute. "This study identifies what I consider a high-risk population," he said. "[The men have] an individual patient characteristic that predisposes them to screening."

Phase I Clinical Trials Test New Therapies for Kids' Cancers
Contemporary Pediatrics - Sept. 1, 2014
Robin Norris, MD, a pediatric oncologist and assistant professor of pediatrics, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, agrees that access to drugs is a barrier to pediatric cancer research. "I think our biggest limitation is actually the number of trials and the number of agents that we, as pediatric oncologists, have access to. There are a lot of phase I studies that are geared toward the adult population but a lot of those agents are not available to children under the age of 18," she says.


Dowlati Helps Lead Study on Potential Treatment Approaches that Could Extend Life of Mesothelioma Patients

Dr. Afshin DowlatiA common Asian spice and cancer-hampering molecules show promise in slowing the progression of mesothelioma, a cancer of the lung's lining often linked to asbestos. Scientists from Case Western Reserve University and the Georg-Speyer-Haus in Frankfurt, Germany, demonstrate that application of curcumin, a derivative of the spice turmeric, and cancer-inhibiting peptides increase levels of a protein inhibitor known to combat the progression of this cancer. Their findings appeared in the August 14 online edition Clinical Cancer Research; the print version of the article will appear October 1.

"Mesothelioma is a disease that continues to have a significant burden worldwide, and the treatment option is really suboptimal. We must find better ways to treat it," said senior author Afshin Dowlati, MD, Professor of Medicine – Hematology/Oncology, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, and member of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center. "We now understand the mechanisms that drive cell proliferation and growth in malignant mesothelioma."

Radiology's Mark Griswold Earns Medical School's Top Honor

Dr. Mark GriswoldLast week, Mark Griswold, PhD, Professor of Radiology, was awarded the CWRU School of Medicine Medal for Excellence in Health Science Innovation, one of its highest honors, to recognize his extraordinary dedication and accomplishments.

Michael Vogelbaum Appointed to NCI Brain Malignancy Steering Committee

Michael A. Vogelbaum MD, PhD has been appointed to the Brain Malignancy Steering Committee of the National Cancer Institute. This committee functions to review and prioritize adult and pediatric phase II and phase III clinical trials submitted for NCI funding. Dr. Vogelbaum also currently serves as the Co-Chair of the Brain Site Committee and Chair of the Neurosurgery Subcommittee at NRG Oncology, one of four adult clinical trials groups in the NCI's National Clinical Trials Network (NCTN).


Fall 2014 Case CCC Clinical Research Retreat

The Case CCC will be holding a Clinical Research Retreat on October 7 in the Wolstein Research Building. A reception will be held from 5-5:30 pm, followed by presentations from 5:30-7 pm.

The agenda will focus on the theme of Immunotherapy:

James Finke, PhDStrategies to Reduce Immune Suppression as a Means to Improve Immunotherapy: A laboratory perspective

Joseph Baar, MDRecent Advances in the Immunotherapy of Cancer

Shaveta Vinayak, MDTumor Infiltrating Lymphocytes Predict for Response to Therapy in Triple-negative Breast Cancer

Mitchell Machtay, MDNational Clinical Trials Network/Cooperative Groups (NCTN) Update

Pre-registration is required. Please contact Dr. Smitha Krishnamurthi ( with any questions. We hope everyone interested in clinical trials can attend!

2014 Adolescent and Young Adult Cancers Symposium

This first Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) cancer conference hosted by the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center is being held October 30-31 at the Iris S. & Bert L. Wolstein Research Building. This collaborative symposium is organized by the Angie Fowler Adolescent & Young Adult Cancer Institute at University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital, UH Seidman Cancer Center, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, and the Oregon Health & Science University Knight Cancer Institute. The focus of this two-day symposium is on advancement of AYA-related cancer research, including exploration of scientific, clinical and psychological considerations in adolescent and young adult cancer patients.

The symposium features speakers from leading academic institutions and non-profit organizations who are at the forefront of AYA research and advocacy, including Heidi Adams, CEO of Critical Mass, and Simon Davies, CEO of Teen Cancer America. We are excited to feature two key speakers from University Hospitals Case Medical Center, Dr. Henry Koon, Disease Team Leader of Melanoma and Dr. Cheryl Kingsberg, Division Chief Ob/GYN Behavioral Medicine, CWRU Obstetrics and Gynecology, University Hospitals MacDonald Women's Hospital.

The symposium also features a keynote address by Clifton Leaf, Deputy Managing Editor, "Fortune Magazine," and author, "The Truth in Small Doses: Why We're Losing the War on Cancer And How to Win It." Mr. Leaf is a cancer survivor and a national advocate for change to the way the global cancer fight is funded and pursued, pushing for ways to speed up progress against the disease. Mr. Leaf has presented testimony to the President's Cancer Panel three times, given a plenary address at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research, and delivered Grand Rounds at the National Cancer Institute, the only journalist to be given that honor.

We hope that you will join us this year for our first AYA cancer conference, and we hope that we can help you connect to an international community of researchers and advocates for the AYA cancer community. Register today! Continuing Medical Education credits are available.


5th Annual DeGregorio Foundation Award for Cancers of the Esophagus and Stomach

The DeGregorio Family Foundation for Gastric and Esophageal Cancer is pleased to announce the 5th annual funding opportunity for gastroesophageal malignancies. The Foundation seeks to promote and facilitate collaborative research on the pathogenesis, early diagnosis, and treatment of upper gastrointestinal malignancies. The Foundation supports high quality, innovative, and transformative translational and bench research to improve the understanding of the biology of these diseases, identification of potential novel therapeutic targets, or in the development and evaluation of novel biomarkers for early diagnosis and treatment. Pre-clinical research, basic mechanistic studies, genomic/epigenomic studies, as well as epidemiologic studies may also be supported.
Deadline: November 3

Support of Multi-investigator Initiatives in the Case CCC

The Case CCC will provide two modes of support to new research teams that plan to submit large multi-investigator grant applications (usually non-R support mechanisms).

  • Administrative support and funding for travel are available to encourage team member meetings and meetings with external advisors.
  • Pilot project funding for research teams with an established track record of collaborative research is available to support key research initiatives that are necessary to generate competitive multi-investigator proposals.

Requests are competitive. The research team must demonstrate the active engagement of members, clearly articulate the significance and innovation of the project, and provide a roadmap for acquisition of external funding.

Advocacy and support of the specific program leadersinteracting with the team is required. Discussion with Ruth Keri, PhD, Associate Director for Basic Research, is strongly encouraged before developing an application.

Deadline: Open


AACR Award for Lifetime Achievement in Cancer Research
Deadline: September 24

AACR Margaret Foti Award for Leadership and Extraordinary Achievements in Cancer Research
Deadline: September 24

Conquer Cancer Foundation Advanced Clinical Research Award (ACRA)
Deadline: September 30

Szent-Györgyi Prize
Deadline: September 30

AACR Award for Outstanding Achievement in Cancer Research
Deadline: October 1

AACR G.H.A. Clowes Memorial Award
Deadline: October 1

Elsa U. Pardee Foundation
Deadline: October 1; February 1; June 1

Limited Submission: Blavatnik Awards for Young Scientists
CWRU LOI Deadline: October 6
External Deadline: November 25

American Brain Tumor Association Discovery Grant Funding Program
Deadline: October 8

Pancreatic Cancer Action Network-AACR Research Acceleration Network (RAN) Grant
LOI Deadline: October 8

AACR Richard and Hinda Rosenthal Memorial Award
Deadline: October 8

AACR Joseph H. Burchenal Memorial Award for Outstanding Achievement in Clinical Cancer Research
Deadline: October 8

AACR-Minorities in Cancer Research Jane Cooke Wright Lectureship
Deadline: October 15

AACR-Women in Cancer Research Charlotte Friend Memorial Lectureship
Deadline: October 15

AACR Award for Outstanding Achievement in Chemistry in Cancer Research
Deadline: October 15

American Cancer Society RFA: Pilot and Exploratory Projects in Palliative Care of Cancer Patients and Their Families
Application Deadline: October 15

American Cancer Society RFA: The Role of Health Policy and Health Insurance in Improving Access to and Performance of Cancer Prevention, Early Detection, and Treatment Services
Deadline: October 15

American Cancer Society RFA: Pilot and Exploratory Studies Using Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) to Achieve Cancer Health Equity
Deadline: October 15

American Cancer Society Research Scholar Grants
Deadline: October 15

American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Fellowships
Deadline: October 15

American Cancer Society Mentored Research Scholar Grant
Deadline: October 15

American Skin Association Research Scholar Awards
Deadline: October 18

American Skin Association Research Scholar Awards for Melanoma/Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer
Deadline: October 18

American Skin Association Research Grants
Deadline: October 18

American Skin Association Medical Student Grants Targeting Melanoma and Skin Cancer
Deadline: October 18

DoD BCRP Breakthrough Award Funding Level 3 and 4
Pre-Application (Preproposal) Deadline: October 22
Invited Application Deadline: January 29, 2015

CTSC KL2 Training Program
Deadline: October 27

Doris Duke Clinical Scientist Development Award
Deadline: October 31

Center for Cancer Research Clinical Investigator Development Program
Deadline: October 31

Worldwide Cancer Research
Deadline: October 31; April 24, 2015

Cancer Research Institute Clinic and Laboratory Integration Program (CLIP) Grants
Deadline: November 1

Free to Breathe
Deadline: November 7

Melanoma Research Alliance Young Investigator Award (including Dermatology Young Investigators), Established Investigator Award (including BMS-MRA Established Investigators), and Pilot Award (including SITC-MRA Pilot Award)
Deadline: November 11

Carcinogenesis SS Graduate Student Award/Dharm V. Singh Carcinogenesis Endowment Award
Deadline: November 16

Melanoma Research Alliance Academic-Industry Partnership Award (for Established Investigators and Teams) and BMS-MRA Team Science Award
Deadline: November 21

Friends For An Earlier Breast Cancer Test®
Deadline: December 1

Audrey Meyer Mars International Fellowship in Clinical Oncology
Deadline: December 1

DoD BCRP Breakthrough Award Funding Level 1 and 2
Pre-Application/LOI Deadline: December 3
Application Deadline: December 17

Worldwide Cancer Research
Deadline: October 31, 2014; April 24, 2015

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

Solving Kids' Cancer Therapeutic Development Initiative
Application Deadline: Open

Support of Multi-investigator Initiatives in the Case CCC
Deadline: Open

Collaborative Activity Awards
Deadline: Open

NIH BULLETIN – Notices and Funding Opportunities

Notice of Pre-application Webinar for RFA-CA-14-018 "Pediatric Preclinical Testing Consortium: Research Programs (U01)" and RFA-CA-14-019 "Pediatric Preclinical Testing Consortium: Coordinating Center (U01)" (NOT-CA-14-047)

Erratum to RFA-CA-14-012 ""Cancer Intervention and Surveillance Modeling Network (CISNET) (U01)"(NOT-CA-14-056)

Administrative Supplements for U.S. – Brazil Biomedical Collaborative Research (PA-14-328)

Revisions for Early-Stage Development of Informatics Technology (R01)(PAR-12-286)

Early-Stage Development of Informatics Technology (U01)(PAR-12-288)

Revisions for Early-Stage Development of Informatics Technology (U01)(PAR-12-289)

Utilizing the PLCO Biospecimens Resource to Bridge Gaps in Cancer Etiology and Early Detection Research (U01)(PAR-13-036)


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 Gillian Irwin at



Mon, September 22

Pathology Research Seminar Series
Derek Taylor, PhD
Assistant Professor, Pharmacology
Topic: Telomeres and Telomerase: Molecular interactions, structural analysis, and a novel approach to cancer therapeutics
12 pm WRB 1-413

GMI Seminar
Wei Wei
Zhang Lab, Genomic Medicine Institute
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Insights into COPII Mediated Trafficking from Hematologic Diseases: congenital dyserythropoietic anemia type II and hemophilia A
12:30 pm NE1-205 Cleveland Clinic

Skeletal Research Center
J. Michael Sorrell, PhD
Adjunct Associate Professor, Skeletal Research Center, Biology Department
Topic: Chondroitin Sulfate: Stem Cell Marker
4 pm Millis 123

Tues, September 23

Pharmacology Seminar Series
Rodrigo Franco, PhD
Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Topic: TBD
12 pm Wood W331/Webster Conference room

THOR Lecture Series
Stephanie Markovina, MD, PhD
Fellow, Barnes-Jewish Hospital, Washington University
Topic: TBD
1 pm R3-027 Cleveland Clinic

Cancer Biology Seminar
Jorge Z. Torres, PhD
John McTague Career Development Chair
Assistant Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry
University of California, Los Angeles
Topic: Chemical and Proteomic Dissection of the Cell Cycle
2 pm NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic

Wed, September 24

Hem/Onc Div Res Conf
Amy Armstrong, MD
Sareena Singh, MD
Fellows, Gynecologic Oncology
CWRU/UH Topic: Fellowship Curriculum Series: Gynecologic Malignancies
8 am Lerner B-151

Pathology Grand Rounds
Kojo Elenitoba-Johnson, MD
Henry C. Bryant Professor
Director, Div. of Translational Pathology
Director, Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory
University of Michigan
Topic: Integrated Genomic and Proteomic Analyses for Identification of Oncogenic Drivers in Lymphoma
8 am Pathology Amphitheatre, Institute of Pathology, B-20-22

Immunology Seminar
Megan Levings, PhD
Professor, Surgery
University of British Columbia
Topic: The Biology of Regulatory T Cells: From Humans to Mice and Back
12pm in NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic

Thurs, September 25

Molecular Genetics Guest Speaker
Wanjin Hong, PhD
Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology
Topic: TAZ/YAP and the Hippo Pathway in Cancer
9:30 am NE1-205 Cleveland Clinic

Immunology Journal Club
Heather Clark 
Graduate Student, Pearlman lab
Topic: A Novel Self-lipid Antigen Targets Human T Cells Against CD1c+ Leukemias
12 pm WRB 5-136

Molecular Biology and Microbiology Seminar
Sheeba Rasheedi, PhD
Skowronski Lab, Molecular Biology and Microbiology
Topic: HIV-1 Co-factor CPSF6 Functions in Association with Other Cellular Proteins
Kasia Hrecka, PhD
Skowronski Lab, Molecular Biology and Microbiology
Topic: SAMHD1 Defends Leukocytes Against HIV infection
1 pm Rottman Seminar Room SOM W203

Cell Signaling and Early Drug Discovery Focus Group Meeting
4 pm WRB 2-136

Fri, September 26

Cellular and Molecular Medicine Seminar Series
Oliver Wessely, PhD
Associate Staff, Cellular and Molecular Medicine 
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Bicaudal-C and microRNAs – A Genetic Modifier of Interstitial Fibrosis in Polycystic Kidney Disease
10 am NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic

BME Focus Session
Sanjay Anand, PhD
Research Associate, Biomedical Engineering
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: TBD
11 am NE1-205 Cleveland Clinic

Cancer Center Seminar Series
Alex Y. Huang, MD, PhD
Associate Professor, Pediatrics
Program Director, Hematology-Oncology Fellowship Program
Topic: Conditioning Tumor Microenvironment for Immune Attack: Chemokines, Adhesion Molecules and Immune Checkpoint Modulation
12 pm BRB 105

Cancer Center Research In Progress Seminar
Sung Hee Choi, PhD
Research Associate, Letterio Lab, Pediatrics
Topic: Triterpenoid Induces 15-PGDH and Suppresses Colon Carcinogenesis
4 pm WRB 3-136

Mon, Sept 29

Pathology Research Seminar Series
Hyoung-Gon Lee, PhD
Department of Pathology 
Topic: TBD
12 pm WRB 1-413

GMI Seminar
Kylie Drake, PhD
Aldred lab, Genomic Medicine Institute
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Dysregulated BMP Signaling in Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension: Pharmacological correction and TGF-B upregulation
12:30 pm NE1-205 Cleveland Clinic

Breast Cancer Program Focus Group Meeting
Topic: Therapeutic Targets
4 pm WRB 3-136

Tumor Immunology/Immunotherapy Meeting
4 pm WRB 1-403

Tues, Sept 30

Radiation Oncology Grand Rounds
Tarun Podder, PhD
Associate Professor, Radiation Oncology
Topic: Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy (SBRT)
8:10 am Lerner Tower, B-151

Pharmacology Seminar Series
Kristian Baker, PhD
Center for RNA Biology
Topic: TBD
12 pm Wood W331/Webster Conference room

THOR Lecture Series
Masato Mitsuhashi, MD, PhD 
CTO NonoSomiX Inc.
Topic: Assessment of Bone Marrow (BM) Condition without BM Aspiration
1 pm R3-027 Cleveland Clinic

Cancer Biology Seminar Series
Ziqi Zhu, PhD
Research Fellow, Sharifi lab, Cancer Biology
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Novel Mechanisms of Hormone Therapy Resistance in Prostate Cancer
2 pm NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic

Director of the Office of Cancer Disparities Research Candidate Seminar
Michael Preston, PhD, MPH
Health Services Researcher/Director, Cancer Control Department
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Topic: Cancer Prevention and Control: Aligning Clinical, Community, and Policy Strategies to Eliminate Cancer Disparities
2 pm WRB 2-136

Wed, Oct 1

Immunology Students Fellows Research in Progress Seminar
Robert Aguliar
Tuohy lab, Immunology
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Development of a Testicular Cancer Vaccine
Yan Li
Lin lab, Immunology
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: A Strategy to Improve Current MSC-Based Therapies
12 pm in NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic

Thurs, Oct 2

Molecular Biology and Microbiology/ Center for AIDS Research
Valadkhan Lab
1 pm Rottman Seminar Room W203

Fri, Oct 3

Cellular and Molecular Medicine Seminar Series
Auinash Kalsotra, PhD
Assistant Professor, Biochemistry and Medical Biochemistry
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Topic: Functional Impact of Post-transcriptional Gene Regulatory Networks
10 am NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic



Case CCC Calendar

LRI Calendar


ASTRO Review
November 15, 2014
Crowne Plaza, Independence, OH

14th Annual Multidisciplinary Genitourinary Oncology Course
November 20, 2014
InterContinental Hotel & Bank of America Conference Center


Society for Integrative Oncology
October 26-28, 2014
Houston, Texas