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Case Comprehensive Cancer Center Newsletter

August 19, 2013


Stan Gerson, MD
Director, Case CCC

Clinical Cancer Experience with PET-MR

A terrific review of the clinical experience in cancer patents of the use of PET-MR was recently published by Drs. Karin Herrmann, Norbert Avril and Pablo Ros, among others. This detailed account summarizes many aspects of the clinical utility of PET-MR in more accurate detection of cancer and cancer metastasis, use in decision-making, comparisons of detection accuracy across cancers, and considerations of reduction in overall radiation imaging exposure, which may especially be an issue in patients with longer life expectancy and pediatric and young adult patients. Its use in minimal residual disease represents another area of ongoing interest.

I ask you to familiarize yourselves with this exciting imaging technology and to consider using this approach as an imaging component of your clinical trials. There are many remaining questions that need to be addressed.

For those at Seidman, the machine is now available for clinical use. Cleveland Clinic will be installing a similar PETMR soon.

Sequester Impact on Biomedical Research - Response from Sen. Brown

For the past couple weeks I have reminded you of the importance of contacting our political leaders to let them know the detrimental effect the sequester has had on research discoveries. One enthusiastic member of the Cancer Center community took the opportunity to write to Sen. Sherrod Brown and wanted to share the response they received back, with the hope that our governmental representatives will continue to push for support of the NIH:

Dear XXX:
Thank you for getting in touch with me regarding funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

NIH is the cornerstone of medical advancement and innovation in the United States, financing lifesaving research to improve the health and wellbeing of all Americans. I am highly supportive of the NIH's mission and am heartened by its successes. As such, I share your concern that NIH funding is taking a grave hit given budget cuts over the last few years and the effects of sequestration.

Not only are these cuts stifling innovation and research, but they are hurting job creation and may even have a lasting effect on the future workforce pipeline of medical researchers. The average age for a principal investigator (PI) receiving his or her first grant continues to increase, as does the average age for all PIs. In essence, we are losing scientists focusing on basic science and research on innovations that are not yet profitable enough to be championed by private industry. Maintaining robust funding levels for NIH is vitally important to reverse these trends.

I strongly support ample funding for NIH which is why I signed Senators Casey and Burr's FY14 appropriations letter. Funding NIH research will help advance groundbreaking discoveries that lead to better understanding of disease processes, treatments, and health outcomes for Americans. As this year's appropriations process moves forward, please be assured that I will continue to advocate for ample funding for NIH.

Thank you again for getting in touch with me.

Sherrod Brown
United States Senator


Tax-PF Superior to PF as Induction Therapy in HNSCC
Helio/HemOnc Today - Aug 19, 2013
Despite the findings, the question about whether Tax-PF followed by chemoradiotherapy is more effective than standard chemoradiotherapy alone remains unproven, Arlene A. Forastiere, MD, of The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, David J. Adelstein, MD, of Cleveland Clinic's Taussig Cancer Institute, and Judi Manola, MS, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, wrote in an accompanying editorial.

Long-term Study of Drug Finasteride Shows Safety, Effectiveness in Lowering Prostate Cancer Risk
Plain Dealer - Aug 16, 2013
The trial showed that the drug significantly reduced the risk of prostate cancer. But initial results also showed that a slightly higher percentage of those on the drug developed high-grade cancer than those assigned to the group that took a placebo..."It really put the damper on clinicians [wanting] to use the drug, and of patients wanting to take it," said Dr. Eric Klein, a urologist and chairman of the Glickman Urological and Kidney Institute at the Cleveland Clinic.

Breast Cancer Battle: New Tool is Saving Lives
Fox 8 Cleveland - Aug 16, 2013
Doctor Donna Plecha at UH Seidman Cancer Center said, "Instead of seeing four images of a basic mammogram, we may see up to 200 or more images, so it slices the breast in one-millimeter slices, almost like a CT scan."

Kidney Function May Not Affect Vidaza's Safety And Efficacy In Higher-Risk MDS Patients
MDS Beacon - Aug 16, 2013
Dr. Mikkael Sekeres of the Cleveland Clinic, who was not involved with the study, agreed with Dr. Kotsianidis that this study indicates Vidaza is effective and safe in patients with impaired kidney function. "This study reports that patients with abnormal kidney function respond just as well to azacitidine [Vidaza], without any additional toxicities, as those [patients] without kidney abnormalities," said Dr. Sekeres.

AXIS Trial: Second-Line Axitinib Versus Sorafenib
OncLive - Aug 15, 2013
The rationale to examine axitinib in the second-line setting stemmed from evidence suggesting that continued VEGF inhibition remains effective in later lines of treatment, explains Brian I. Rini, MD. As a result, the phase III AXIS trial evenly randomized 723 patients with clear-cell mRCC to receive second-line axitinib or sorafenib. Patient selection was carefully restricted to only one prior therapy; however, this treatment could have been a variety of agents, including cytokines, high-dose IL-2, temsirolimus, and a VEGF inhibitor.

Less Aggressive Prostate Cancer Tumors Tend to Stay that Way Over Time, Study Shows
Plain Dealer - Aug 14, 2013
Not only are the study findings a step toward a better understanding of the biology of prostate cancer, they also help to emphasize the benefit of PSA screening and the fact that most low-grade prostate cancer is over-treated, said Dr. Eric Klein, a urologist and chairman of the Glickman Urological and Kidney Institute at the Cleveland Clinic.

Lack of Elderly Patients in Cancer Trials Leads to Inadequate Treatment Guidance
HemOnc Today - Aug 10, 2013
Consequently, clinicians will need to know more about how to treat and care for this segment of the population, Dale R. Shepard, MD, PhD, co-director of the Taussig Oncology Program for Seniors and staff physician in the department of solid tumor oncology at Cleveland Clinic's Taussig Cancer Institute, said in an interview.


Graft-versus-Host Disease (GvHD) National Symposium

Registration is open for the Graft-versus-Host Disease (GvHD) National Symposium, Friday, November 1 at the Embassy Suites Cleveland. This conference is intended to raise awareness about the signs and symptoms of GvHD, review cutting edge approaches to prevention and treatment, and highlight and promote research to further our understanding of its cause. The symposium will have two tracks: a scientifically rigorous one for physicians and practitioners, and a survivor track that will focus on challenges faced by BMT recipients and their families. CME credit is available.

This symposium will also feature a poster session. Abstracts should be submitted no later than Friday, September 27 at 5:00 pm to lmh92@case.edu. Abstracts will be published in a booklet or the syllabus, which will be given to all participants. Prizes will be awarded. The registration fee for invited presenters is complimentary, but advance registration is required.


Case Comprehensive Cancer Center Microscope Usage Survey

We are attempting to determine microscope usage among Cancer Center members to more fully meet your research needs. We are especially interested in determining your needs for super resolution microscopy. Advances in microscopy and cell biology are intimately intertwined, with new visualization possibilities leading to dramatic leaps in our understanding of how cells function. The recent advances in super resolution microscopy have changed the limits of optical resolution from 250 nm to 20 nm. Biologists are no longer limited to inferring molecular interactions, as it is now possible to see the individual molecules as they interact. We would like to know your interest in bringing super resolution technology to our campus. Please take a few minutes to complete a survey on microscopes and specifically to your need for super resolution microscopy.

Publication Support Acknowledgement

Please remember to acknowledge the valuable support provided by the Cancer Center and its core facilities in your research papers and publications:

"This research was supported by the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (P30CA043703)." OR

"This research was supported by the [insert facility name] Core Facility of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (P30CA043703)."


Melanoma Research Alliance

The Melanoma Research Alliance (MRA) announces its seventh annual Request for Proposals (RFP), soliciting translational research grant applications from scientists and clinicians around the world. The RFP calls for ideas that could lead to high impact near-term clinical application in melanoma detection, prevention, diagnosis, staging, or treatment.

  • Team Science Awards: Multidisciplinary teams of two or more PIs will receive funding to support projects with the potential to lead to transformative advances in prevention, early detection, staging and/or treatment of melanoma. All PIs in the team share authority for scientific leadership. An investigator may serve as a PI on only one LOI. Each team must include at least one Young Investigator as a co-investigator whose work must be integral to one or more of the aims of the proposal.
    LOI Deadline: October 7
  • Young Investigator Awards: Investigators within four years of their first academic faculty appointment at the time of application will be provided funding to accomplish innovative, translational research projects. Young Investigator applicants must designate a Mentor, i.e., a senior investigator at the same institution who will ensure that adequate support and guidance are provided for successful completion of the proposed research project. Fellows or others who are in training or support positions are not eligible to apply. However, applications from those who have secured an independent faculty position commencing by July 1, 2014 will be considered; in this case, a letter from an institutional official or department chairperson confirming the planned date of faculty appointment is required at the time of application.
    Proposal Deadline: November 13
  • Established Investigator Academic-Industry Partnership Awards: These awards are designed to facilitate progress via interactions between the academic and industrial research sectors, and will be co-funded by MRA and an industrial collaborator whose involvement is essential to the project. The PI must be an academic investigator. Investigators with an established record of scientific productivity will receive funding to conduct projects supported by preliminary data. Industry funds and/or in-kind support (e.g., reagents, clinical grade drugs, equipment, contract services) must match but may exceed MRA funds for the award period. Industry scientists may serve as co-investigators or collaborators, but may not be PIs.
    Proposal Deadline: November 13
Fourth Annual DeGregorio Foundation Award for Cancers of the Upper GI Tract

The DeGregorio Family Foundation for Gastric and Esophageal Cancer is pleased to announce the 4th 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. We support high quality, innovative, and transformative translational and bent 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.
Deadline: October 31



August 19

Special Pathology Lecture
Srinivas Gottipati, MD
Fellow, Renal Pathology
Johns Hopkins University
Topic: Surgical Pathology of High Grade Prostate Adenocarcinoma
8 am Institute of Pathology Amphitheatre

Pathology Research Seminar Series
Eli Bar, PhD
Assistant Professor, Neurological Surgery
Topic: Inhibition of Monocarboxylate Transporter-4 Depletes Stem-like Glioblastoma Cells in a Lactate Independent Fashion
12 pm WRB 1-413

August 20

Cancer Biology Staff/Candidate Seminar
Feng Wang-Johanning, MD, PhD
Associate Professor, Veterinary Sciences and Immunology
University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Topic: Endogenous Retroviral Antigens for Immunotherapy of Cancers
11 am NC1-202 Cleveland Clinic

August 21

Department of Neurosciences - Mid Term Evaluation Seminar
Dolores Hambardzumyan, PhD
Assistant Professor, Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine
CWRU/Cleveland Clinic
Topic: The Role of Non-Neoplastic Cell Types in Gliomagenesis
10 am NE1-205 Cleveland Clinic

Hematology and Oncology Division Research Conference
Raj Choudhary, MD
Leland Metheny, MD
Michelle Treasure, MD
Nicole Williams, MD
Fellows, Div. of Hem/Onc
Topic: Fellows' Research Projects and Progress Made at the Vail Methods in Clinical Cancer Research Workshop
8 am Lerner Tower B-151

August 22

Molecular Genetics Seminar
Michelle Longworth, PhD
Assistant Staff, Molecular Genetics
Cleveland Clinic
Topic: Condensin II subunit dCAP-D3 Restricts Retrotransposon Mobilization in Somatic Cells
9:30 am NE1-205 Cleveland Clinic

Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine
Jan Nolta, PhD
Director, Stem Cell Program and Institute for Regenerative Cures
University of California-Davis
Topic: Regenerative Medicine Therapies Using Adult Stem Cells
1 pm NE1-205 Cleveland Clinic

August 23

Cancer Center Research in Progress will resume in September

Taussig Cancer Institute Grand Rounds will resume in September

Hematology/Oncology Fellows Conference/Curriculum Series
Erica Campagnaro, MD
Assistant Professor, Div. of Hem/Onc
Topic: Multiple Myeloma Overview
8 am Wearn 137/Breen Conference Rm

Pathology Dissertation Defense
Lachelle Weeks
PhD Candidate, Gerson Lab, Pathology
Topic: Elucidating a Role for Uracil DNA Glycosylase (UNG)-initiated Base Excision Repair in the Cellular Sensitivity to the Antifolate, Pemetrexed
9:30 am WRB 2-136

Cancer Center Seminar Series
John S. Lazo, PhD
Harrison Distinguished Teaching Professor, Pharmacology
Associate Dean for Basic Research
University of Virginia
Topic: Challenges and Opportunities in the Development of Protein Phosphatase-Directed Therapeutics
12 pm BRB 105

Radiation Oncology Physics Seminar
Chee-Wai Chen, PhD
Senior Medical Physicist
Indiana University Health Proton Therapy Center
Topic: Uncertainties in Proton Therapy
12 pm Lerner Tower B-151



Case CCC Calendar

LRI Calendar





MSC 2013: Adult Stem Cell Therapy & Regenerative Medicine
August 19-21
Cleveland Marriott Downtown at Key Center

Molecular Genetics Guest Speaker
August 28
Myron R. Szewczuk, PhD
Department of Biomedical and Molecular Sciences
Queen's University
Topic: Neu1 Sialidase and Matrix Metalloproteinase-9 Cross-talk Regulates Nucleic Acid-induced Endosomal TOLL-like Receptor-7 and -9 Activation, Cellular Signaling and Pro-inflammatory Responses
9:30 am NE1-205 Cleveland Clinic

New Directions in Melanoma and Non-Melanoma Skin Cancers
October 18
Holiday Inn–Cleveland South

National GvHD Health Symposium
November 1
Embassy Suites Cleveland-Rockside


Prevent Cancer Foundation Grants and Fellowships
Deadline: August 21

Avon Breast Health Outreach Program
Deadline: August 23

ASCO Special Awards Program
Deadline: August 26

American Gastroenterological Association Funderburg Research Award in Gastric Cancer
Deadline: August 30

Susan G. Komen Career Catalyst Research Grants – Basic and Translational Research
Pre-Application Deadline: September 5
Full Application Deadline: December 5

Susan G. Komen Career Catalyst Research Grants – Clinical Research
Pre-Application Deadline: September 5
Full Application Deadline: December 5

Susan G. Komen Postdoctoral Fellowship Grants – Basic and Translational Research
Pre-Application Deadline: September 5
Full Application Deadline: December 5

Susan G. Komen Postdoctoral Fellowship Grants – Clinical Research
Pre-Application Deadline: September 5
Full Application Deadline: December 5

Susan G. Komen Graduate Training in Disparities Research (GTDR)
Pre-Application Deadline: September 5
Full Application Deadline: December 5

AACR-CRI Lloyd J. Old Award in Cancer Immunology
Nomination Deadline: September 6

Pezcoller Foundation–AACR International Award for Cancer Research
Nomination Deadline: September 12

Avon Safety Net Program
LOI Deadline: September 12
Application Deadline: October 24

Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation 'A' Award
Deadline: September 16

PCRP Health Disparity Research Award
LOI Deadline: September 18
Application Deadline: October 9

PCRP Clinical Consortium Award
LOI Deadline: September 18
Application Deadline: October 9

PCRP Prostate Cancer Pathology Resource Network (PCPRN or Network) Award
LOI Deadline: September 18
Application Deadline: October 9

PCRP Population Science Impact Award
LOI Deadline: September 18
Application Deadline: October 9

AACR-American Cancer Society Award for Research Excellence in Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention
Nomination Deadline: September 19

AACR Princess Takamatsu Memorial Lectureship
Nomination Deadline: September 19

AACR Margaret Foti Award for Leadership and Extraordinary Achievements in Cancer Research
Nomination Deadline: September 26

Szent-Györgyi Prize for Progress in Cancer Research
Deadline: September 30

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Scholar
LOI Deadline: October 1
Application Deadline: October 15

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Scholar in Clinical Research
LOI Deadline: October 1
Application Deadline: October 15

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Special Fellow
LOI Deadline: October 1
Application Deadline: October 15

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Special Fellow in Clinical Research
LOI Deadline: October 1
Application Deadline: October 15

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Fellow
LOI Deadline: October 1
Application Deadline: October 15

AACR Award for Outstanding Achievement in Chemistry in Cancer Research
Nomination Deadline: October 3

AACR-Minorities in Cancer Research Jane Cooke Wright Lectureship
Nomination Deadline: October 3

AACR-Women in Cancer Research Charlotte Friend Memorial Lectureship
Nomination Deadline: October 3

AACR Joseph H. Burchenal Memorial Award for Outstanding Achievement in Clinical Cancer Research
Nomination Deadline: October 10

AACR Richard and Hinda Rosenthal Memorial Award
Nomination Deadline: October 10

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

AACR G.H.A. Clowes Memorial Award
Nomination Deadline: October 17

Foundation for Women's Cancer Claudia Cohen Research Foundation Prize for Outstanding Gynecologic Cancer Researcher
Deadline: October 23

Foundation for Women's Cancer Dr. John L. Lewis, Jr./William F. O'Connor Foundation Research Prize
Deadline: October 23

Foundation for Women's Cancer Perlman Family CARE Lynch Syndrome Research Prize
Deadline: October 23

American Society of Hematology
Deadline: November 1

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

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

Notice of Intent to Publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement for "Cancer Detection, Diagnostic and Treatment Technologies for Global Health (UH2/UH3)" (NOT-CA-13-015)

Examination of Survivorship Care Planning Efficacy and Impact (R01)(PA-12-275)

NCI Small Grants Program for Cancer Research (NCI Omnibus R03)(PAR-12-144)

Physical activity and weight control interventions among cancer survivors: Effects on biomarkers of prognosis and survival (R01)(PAR-12-228)

Innovative Molecular Analysis Technology Development for Cancer Research and Clinical Care (R43/R44)(PAR-13-327)

Revisions for Early-Stage Development of Informatics Technology (P01)(PAR-13-330)

Rare Diseases Clinical Research Consortia (RDCRC) for Rare Diseases Clinical Research Network (U54)(RFA-TR-13-002)

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 gillian.irwin@case.edu.