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April 20, 2018
Dr. Stan Gerson
Stan Gerson, MD
Director, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center

AACR & Update on The Biden Cancer Initiative
I spent the first half of this week at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting in Chicago. After viewing many posters, going to talks for three days, and learning about immune monitoring for IO trials, genomic heterogeneity and drug resistance at the single cell level, and new drug development, I was asked to participate in an update of the Biden Cancer Initiative on Tuesday afternoon at 5 pm [ view webcast]. The discussion was interesting and I really learned a lot. Most importantly, I learned that public interest in cancer discovery, impact and benefit has incredible traction - many across the country are helping to expand the impact of our discoveries, but also have a sense of urgency that we include every household in the benefits of cancer research. 

What started as the Biden Moonshot - now well-funded through NCI appropriations and supporting a few NCI awards to members of our center, including the tobacco cessation intervention led by Monica Web Hooper - now includes many initiatives that you may not be aware of:
  • Uber health can help transport our patients to their appointments, and also for their clinical research and clinical trial visits.
  • Apple will make the EMR available to patients, and in time I hope translatable for research after patients agree to provide the data directly.
  • Deloitte is helping to develop expanded prevention access programs and facilitating cost management and cross-institution efforts using their visionary savviness to improve early detection testing.
  • BMS Foundation is supporting efforts to improve lung cancer survivorship, especially in the age of IO treatments.
  • LLS is supporting a 9-arm study - now at 7 centers - for AML in older patients, with the aim of proposing a new treatment paradigm to FDA in the next year.
Each of us could link to at least one of these initiatives in our research efforts, and, if not, could benefit from reviewing the Lancet monogram authored by Liz Jaffe and many others on the Cancer Roadmap [ Jaffee E, Lancet Oncol, 2013], published as a result of the Moonshot initiative.
Learn to Beat Cancer: Session 1
On Saturday morning, April 7, a group of Bolton Middle School 7th  grade students from the Cleveland Metropolitan School District came to the CWRU School of Medicine for a lively three-hour experience " Learn to Beat Cancer," sponsored by the CWRU Center for Science, Health & Society and the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center.  Beat Cancer Working Group Designed and conducted by a group of medical and graduate students, the active, engaging and participatory learning program was kick-started with an upbeat welcome by Jessica Asirwatham, who likened the body's cellular composition to bricks used to build a wall. more>
Cancer Center Seminar Series: Oncohistones: Connecting Epigenetic Regulation with Gliomagenesis
Apr 20, 2018 | WRB 1-413
Suzanne Baker PhD
Join us today, April 20 at noon in the Wolstein Research Building Auditorium (WRB 1-413) for the  Cancer Center Seminar Series, and hear  Suzanne J. Baker, PhD,  Director of the Brain Tumor Research Division, Associate Director for Basic Research at the Comprehensive Cancer Center,  Co-Leader of the Neurobiology & Brain Tumor Program, and  Endowed Chair in Brain Tumor Research at  St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, discuss " Oncohistones: Connecting Epigenetic Regulation with Gliomagenesis."  This seminar is hosted by the GI Cancer Genetics Program of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center. 

The Baker laboratory is focused on elucidating the mechanisms driving diffuse high-grade glioma (HGG) in children. In children and adults, diffuse high-grade gliomas (HGGs), including Grade III anaplastic astrocytomas and Grade IV glioblastomas, share a devastating outcome, with median survival slightly greater than one year, and five-year survival of 10-25%. Although HGGs from different age groups share related gene expression signatures, histopathological features, and frequent mutations in common pathways, there are a number of distinguishing features of pediatric HGG that indicate a unique pathogenesis. While adult glioblastomas arise predominantly in the cerebral cortex, in children, a broader spectrum of anatomical locations are more frequently involved, including the occurrence of diffuse intrinsic pontine gliomas (DIPGs), which arise in the brainstem. 

Recent genome-wide studies from our group and others provided abundant evidence that unique selective pressures drive HGG in children compared to adults, identifying novel oncogenic mutations connecting tumorigenesis and chromatin regulation as well as developmental signaling pathways. It is now clear that there are at least several distinct subgroups of pediatric diffuse HGG based on clinical features and recurrent mutations. Ongoing work is directed towards integrating the latest genomic findings from primary human tumors to develop improved models of these disease subgroups that recapitulate the genetic and biological features of the disease for mechanistic studies and preclinical testing of selective therapies.

DNA Repair Symp Banner The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center and Case Western Reserve University will host the 20th Annual Midwest DNA Repair Symposium May 5-6, 2018 . This symposium is a great opportunity for people working on DNA damage and repair in the midwest area to gather together and discuss science! The agenda promises exciting science and opportunities for networking, poster presentations, and keynote presentations from field experts  Stephen Kowalczykowski and Lee Zou .

There is only a few more weeks to register - secure your spot today! 
AACI Clinical Research Initiative
Jul 11-12, 2018 | Chicago, IL
AACI-logo The AACI Clinical Research Initiative (CRI) Steering Committee is currently soliciting abstracts for the 10th Annual AACI CRI Meeting that will be held July 11-12, 2018, in Chicago, IL. This year's meeting theme is Leveraging Change to Advance Cures for Cancer Patients. The purpose of the abstracts is to inform the CRI meeting audience about clinical trials office challenges and solutions implemented at the cancer centers.  Abstracts are due by 5:00pm PST on Friday, April 20. All submission should be sent to
Three abstracts will be selected for oral presentation at the meeting. Up to two authors of each winning abstract will receive complimentary meeting registration or a refund for a previously paid meeting registration fee. While AACI encourages collaboration with external organizations, only employees of AACI member cancer centers are eligible for complimentary meeting registration.  All authors who submit abstracts are encouraged to present and discuss their findings during the poster session at the meeting. 

CSC 2018 - web banner
The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (Case CCC) and National Center for Regenerative Medicine (NCRM) invite you to Cancer Stem Cell Conference (CSC 2018)! Now in it's third year, CSC 2018 will feature renowned thought leaders in the field of cancer stem cell research. This conference is guaranteed to offer cutting-edge keynote presentations from a variety of niches within the field. Join world-class investigators for this 3-day summit and network with scientists and clinicians advancing cancer stem cell research and therapeutic applications.

Conference Highlights
  • The agenda will integrate invited talks from thought leaders in the CSC field with short talks from early-stage investigators and trainees selected from submitted abstracts.
  • Pre-conference career development workshop for junior faculty and trainees
    • Meet the Editors: Natalie Cain, PhD (CellReports), Mark Landis, PhD (CancerDiscovery) and Teodoro Pulvirenti, PhD(JEM)
    • Discussion of NIH grants: Michael Espey, PhD (NCI) and Michelle McGuirl, PhD (NIH)
  • Young Investigator Awards available to support travel for senior trainees or junior faculty (less than 5 years from their first independent position).
  • Opportunity to share ideas with world-class investigators in stem cell research. 2016 CSC was attended by over 300 from 20 countries and 25 U.S. states. This year's conference is on track to attract a similar crowd of colleagues.
Keynote Speakers
  • Norman E. 'Ned' Sharpless, MD (NCI)
  • John S. Condeelis, PhD (Einstein)
  • Irving Weissman, MD (Stanford)
  • Zena Werb, PhD (UCSF)
Call for Abstracts Deadline: May 15

Discounts for early registration through May31

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Evidence for Action: Investigator-Initiated Research to Build a Culture of Health
Applications accepted on a rolling basis
Evidence for Action (E4A), a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, funds research that expands the evidence base needed to build a Culture of Health. Our mission is to support rigorously designed quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods research that yields convincing findings regarding the population health, well-being, and equity impacts of specific policies, programs and partnerships. We are especially interested in research examining the health impacts of programmatic or policy interventions that address factors outside the domain of health care services or public health practice.
Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation
Alex Lemonade Stand Fdn
Deadline: May 21, 2018
Reach Grants are designed to move hypothesis-driven research into the clinic The $250,000, two year grant is intended to fund developmental therapeutic studies in the late stage of preclinical testing. A successful application will identify an unmet clinical need relevant to the care of pediatric patients with cancer and describe how the work performed will allow for the translation to the clinic within two years of completion. A plan and timeline for clinical testing and trial implementation is expected. This grant does not fund clinical trial expenses.

Deadline: May 21, 2018
The 'A' Award is a four-year grant designed for the early independent career scientist who wants to establish a career in pediatric oncology research. The ideal applicant has an original project that is not currently being funded. Demonstration of a future commitment to pediatric cancer investigation as well as institutional support for the career development of the investigator are critical components of a successful application. 
Mark Foundation for Cancer Research Emerging Leader Awards
Deadline: Jun 4, 2018
Mark Foundation logo The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research is pleased to announce its inaugural Request for Proposals, the Emerging Leader Awards. These signature three-year academic grants totaling $750,000 will provide support to early career investigators conducting high-risk, high-impact cancer research. Eligible applicants must be within 3-8 years from the start of their independent research appointment.
Lung Cancer Research Foundation
Deadline: Jul 2, 2018
Lung Cancer Research Fdn The Lung Cancer Research Foundation's grant program provides funding for innovative research focused on the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and cure of lung cancer. The goal of the grant program is to fund innovative projects across the spectrum of basic, translational, and clinical research. 

Investigators must be affiliated with a non-profit academic or research institution and must fall into one of the following categories:
  • Students and fellows
  • Young and mid-career investigators with less than ten years' experience since initial faculty appointment
  • Non-tenure track researchers, staff scientists, and clinicians (any number years of experience)
MedPage Today - Apr 12, 2018
Patients who were deemed ineligible for clinical cancer trials, but who receive the study treatment anyway, had safety and efficacy outcomes comparable to eligible patients, researchers found in a retrospective analysis...
Specifically, the study authors found that, in 13 SWOG (formerly the Southwest Oncology Group) leukemia studies, patients who were allowed in despite meeting exclusion criteria -- their ineligible status was discovered after the fact -- had the same rate of toxicities, remission, and survival as patients who were genuinely eligible.  "This shows that eligibility criteria can be broadened without introducing risk to patients, and with the benefit of actually enrolling patients into clinical trials who are actually closer to those who we actually treat in the clinic," the study's senior author, Mikkael Sekeres, MD, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, Leukemia Program, Taussig Cancer Institute, Cleveland Clinic, told MedPage Today.  The study was published online in  Blood .
MedPage Today - Apr 17, 2018
We invited top specialists in oncology to discuss the latest on lung cancer out of AACR...Role for Targeted Agents:  Vamsidhar Velcheti, MD, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, Associate Director, Center for Immuno-Oncology Research at Cleveland Clinic Cancer Center:  The IMpower150 findings are encouraging for patients with EGFR mutations. Most clinical trials in lung cancer using immunotherapy demonstrate modest activity in patients harboring EGFR mutations. The potential improvement in PFS in this study is likely related to the possible synergistic effects of VEGF inhibition with bevacizumab and atezolizumab. Though the findings in the study are encouraging this should be confirmed in a larger study.
US News & World Report - Apr 16, 2018
The American Cancer Society reports that lung cancer is the second most common cancer in America today, constituting about 14 percent of all new cancer diagnoses. That means about 234,030 new cases of lung cancer are expected to be diagnosed in 2018, and about 154,050 people are expected to die of the disease this year, making it the leading cause of cancer death...
"When somebody is diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer, the disease has traveled to other parts of the body and the usual approach is to use drug therapy," says Dr. James Stevenson, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, an oncologist specializing in lung cancer at the Cleveland Clinic. A single type of chemo drug may be used, or doctors may opt to combine two or three different drugs, depending on the specifics of each case. "Traditionally, we've used combinations of chemotherapy drugs because we know these combination drugs, what we call platinum-based combinations, provide more benefit than if you used one drug by itself," Stevenson says.

NIH BULLETIN- Notices and Funding Opportunities
NCI Participation in PA-18-141, Mechanisms, Models, Measurement, & Management in Pain Research (R01 Clinical Trial Optional)(NOT-CA-18-068)

Alzheimer's Disease and its related Dementias (AD/ADRD)-focused Administrative supplements for NIH grants that are not focused on Alzheimer's disease (NOT-AG-18-008)

Request for Information (RFI): Nomination of Molecular Targets Substantially Relevant to the Growth or Progression of Pediatric Cancers (NOT-CA-18-062)
Deadline: May 20, 2018

National Cancer Institute (NCI) Request for Information (RFI): Strategies for Matching Patients to Clinical Trials (NOT-CA-18-063)

NCI Participation in PAR-18-694, Interdisciplinary Research Teams to Investigate Reciprocal Basic Behavioral and Social Linkages Between Sleep and Stress (R24 - Clinical Trial Optional)(NOT-CA-18-066)

NCI Participation in PAR-18-733, Small Research Grants for Analyses of Data for the Gabriella Miller Kids First Data Resource (R03 - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(NOT-CA-18-067)

Program Announcements
Novel Nucleic Acid Sequencing Technology Development (R01 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(RFA-HG-18-001)
Deadline: Jun 27, 2018; Jun 27, 2019; Jun 26, 2020

Novel Nucleic Acid Sequencing Technology Development (R21 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(RFA-HG-002)
Deadline: Jun 27, 2018; Jun 27, 2019; Jun 26, 2020

Novel Nucleic Acid Sequencing Technology Development (R43/R44 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(RFA-HG-18-003)
Deadline: Jun 27, 2018; Jun 27, 2019; Jun 26, 2020

Development of Curricular or Training Activities in Rigor and Transparency to Enhance Reproducibility (Admin Supp Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(PA-18-756)
Deadline: May 18, 2018

Administrative Supplements to NIGMS Predoctoral Training Grants for the Development of Activities to Prepare Trainees for Careers in the Biomedical Research Workforce (Admin Supp Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(PA-18-757)
Deadline: May 18, 2018

Development of Curricular or Training Activities in Laboratory Safety (Admin Supp Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(PA-18-758)
Deadline: May 18, 2018

Development of Curricular or Training Activities in Skills Development (Admin Supp Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(PA-18-759)
Deadline: May 18, 2018

Research Supplements to Promote Data Sharing in Cancer Epidemiology Studies (Admin Supp Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(PA-18-748)
Deadline: Jul 1, 2018

Administrative Supplements to NCI Grant and Cooperative Agreement Awards to Support Collaborations with the Drug Resistance and Sensitivity Network (DRSN)(Admin Supp Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(PAR-18-752)
Deadline: Jun 30, 2018
Fri, Apr 20
Taussig Cancer Institute Grand Rounds
Daniel Farkas, MD; James Cook, MD; Michael Weindel, MD
Cleveland Clinic
"Update on new NGS-based molecular oncology panels at PLMI"
8a CA5-120

Cellular and Molecular Medicine
John Bell
10x Genomics
"Exploring single cell transcriptomic applications with 10x genomics"
10a NC1-202

Special Seminar
Prof. Dalila Darmoul Head-Protease Signaling in Melanoma Team Associate Professor INSERM U976 Universite Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cite Hospital Saint-Louis-Esquerre Bazin 1 "The role of serine protease-mediated signaling in cancer"
11a WRB 4-136

Cancer Center Seminar Series
Suzanne J. Baker, PhD Director, Brain Tumor Research Division; Associate Director for Basic Research; Co-Leader, Neurobiology & Brain Tumor Program; Endowed Chair in Brain Tumor Research, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
"Oncohistones: connecting epigenetic regulation with gliomagenesis"
12p WRB 1-413
Mon, Apr 23
Physiology & Biophysics
Sharona Gordon, PhD Professor, Physiology and Biophysics, University of Washington
"Chemistry at the membrane: an unnatural approach in a natural setting"
Tues, Apr 24
Immunology Research Seminar
Sarah Groft
Harding Lab, CWRU
"Antibody sialylation regulates immune responses to mycobacterium tuberculosis"
12p WRB 1-413

Special Seminar
John P. Seibyl, MED '86 "Brain imaging biomarkers in treatment trials of neurodegenerative disease: From clinical research to clinical practice"

Cancer Biology Seminar Series
Kepeng Che, PhD
Research Fellow, Rubin Lab, Cancer Biology, Cleveland Clinic
"Targeting the untargetable: development of a novel high-throughput biophysical assay to identify TAZ/Hippo pathway inhibitors"
2p NC1-202
Thurs, Apr 26
Developmental Therapeutics Journal Club
9a R4-013

Molecular Biology and Microbiology Seminar
Mary Ann Checkley and Ben Luttge
Karn lab, CWRU
1p SOM W203

Harland G. Wood Distinguished Lecture
Michael Snyder 
Stanford Ascherman Professor and Chair of Genetics; Director of the Center of Genomics and Personalized Medicine, Stanford University
"Big data and health"
Reception 3-4p; Talk starts at  4p WRB 1-413
Fri, Apr 27
TCI Grand Rounds
8a CA5-120

Cancer Center Seminar Series
Mari H. Dallas, MD Associate Professor, Pediatric Hematology/ Oncology; Member, Hematopoietic and Immune Cancer Biology Program, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, Case Western Reserve University
"Critical role of immune and cellular therapy in patients undergoing hematopoietic stem cell transplantation - Emerging development in gd T cell-based therapies"
12p WRB 1-413
Mon, Apr 30
Pathology Research Seminar Series
Sirui Jiang
Zhu Lab
"Mitochondrial dynamics and Alzheimer's Disease"
12p WRB 1-413

Cancer Center Research Chalk Talk
Liraz Levi, PhD
Case CCC
1p WRB 3-136
Tues, May 1
Cancer Center Research in Progress Seminar
3p WRB 3-136
Thurs, May 3
Developmental Therapeutics Journal Club
9a R4-013

CFAR Leaders Meeting
Jintanat Ananworanich, MD, PhD
Associate Director for Therapeutics Research, U.S. Military HIV Research Program
"Acute HIV infection and HIV remission research: experience from the RV254 study in Thailand"
1p SOM W203
Fri, May 4
Taussig Cancer Institute Grand Rounds
8a CA5-120

Cellular and Molecular Medicine
Jeremy Chien, PhD
Endowed Professor, Cancer Genomics and Target Discovery,  University of New Mexico Comprehensive Cancer Center
"Targeting genetic vulnerabilities in ovarian cancer"
10a NC1-202

Cancer Center Seminar Series: Helen Moss Integrative Oncology Lecture
Donald I. Abrams, MD Professor, Medicine, University of California San Francisco Oncology, Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital Integrative Oncology, Osher Center for Integrative Medicine "Cannabis in cancer care"
12p WRB 1-413


Deadline: Open

Deadline: Open
Case Comprehensive Cancer Center 
11100 Euclid Avenue, Wearn152
Cleveland, OH 44106-5065