January 15, 2021
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Member/Center Highlights
Study Reveals How Improved Type of Light Therapy Kills Pre-Cancerous Cells
Researchers in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute have developed an improved approach to treating actinic keratosis, a pre-cancerous skin condition usually treated with photodynamic therapy that patients often report as painful.

Findings from a clinical trial led by Cleveland Clinic physician-scientist Edward Maytin, MD, PhD, published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology in April of last year showed patients reported significantly less pain during a newer regimen of the therapy called painless photodynamic therapy (p-PDT) versus the conventional treatment. The newer regimen begins light therapy immediately following the application of liquid medication known as a photosynthesizer, while the conventional method allows for the photosynthesizer to absorb into the skin for an hour or more before light application. Dr. Maytin is a member of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center's Developmental Therapeutics Program.

Late last year, a mechanistic study published in Photochemistry and Photobiology and led by Sanjay Anand, PhD, a project scientist in the Maytin lab, revealed that p-PDT is not only an effective therapy for actinic keratosis, but its effectiveness is tied to its ability to increase production and recruitment of a host of immune cell types. The signaling pathway of p-PDT is a contrast to that of conventional photodynamic therapy which primarily produces free radicals to induce pre-cancerous cell death.
Trainee Spotlight: Bayik awarded K99 to study immune suppression, brain tumors
The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center extends congratulations to Defne Bayik, PhD, a Research Associate in the lab of Justin Lathia, PhD at Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Insitute, as she was recently awarded a K99/R00 NIH Pathway to Independence Award by the National Cancer Institute. Dr. Bayik will continue her studies in of myeloid cells in brain tumors with the award.
Accepting applications: Youth Engaged in Cancer Research Program 
The Youth Engaged in Cancer Research Program provides high school students from Cleveland area high schools with a unique opportunity to engage in medical research projects under the direction of Cancer Center faculty.

Students are selected for participation in this exciting program based on their interest in science, their scholastic achievement, and letters of recommendation submitted by their high school science teachers and school counselors.

The program is accepting applications through March 1, 2021.
School of Medicine COVID-19 Town Hall Recording Now Available
Faculty and staff who were unable to attend the School of Medicine's COVID-19 Town Hall on Thursday, January 7 may now access the meeting recording here.
Security Notice: Submissions to the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center
Recent security measures across the Cleveland Clinic network have made the Case CCC Marketing and Communications Request Form inaccessible to members of our community.

The current submission form is currently being recreated on another platform and will be announced when it is complete. While the existing form is still available for use on private networks or mobile devices with browsing data, requests and submissions may also be sent directly to our communications team for review at cancer@case.edu in the interim. We apologize for the inconvenience and are working to resolve the issue as soon as possible.
What's Coming Up
Mark Your Calendar
Cancer Center Seminar Series
TODAY, January 15, 2021, 12p via Zoom
Today's Cancer Center Seminar features Jae Jung, PhD presenting, "TRIM56: Intracellular DNA Sensing Pathway and Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease," on behalf of the Molecular Oncology Program at noon via Zoom.

Dr. Jung is Betsy DeWindt Chair, Department of Cancer Biology and Director, Global and Emerging Pathogen Research Center at Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute and member of the Case CCC's Molecular Oncology Program. Dr. Jung’s lab has shown that TRIM25 induces the K63-linked ubiquitination of RIG-I RNA sensor and TRIM56 induces the mono-ubiquitination of cGAS (cyclic GMP-AMP synthase) DNA sensor, which both are critical for cytosolic viral nucleic sensing to induce host’s anti-viral innate immunity. On the other hand, his lab has also found that TRIM56 targets and stabilizes AMP kinase pathway to regulate fatty acid synthesis. TRIM56 deficient mice develop obesity and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), a condition in which excess fat is stored in the liver, leading to cirrhosis and liver cancer. This indicates that TRIM56 may link cGAS-mediated DNA sensing with NAFLD.
Cancer Center Seminar Series
Friday, January 22, 2021, 12p via Zoom
Next week's Cancer Center Seminar features William Tse, MD, MBA presenting, "Development of the CD4CAR- and Dual Targeting CAR T-Cell Therapy for Hematologic Malignancies" on behalf of the Hematopoietic and Immune Cancer Biology Program.

Dr. Tse is Deputy Director of MetroHealth Cancer Center and Director, Division of Hematology/Oncology at MetroHealth Medical Center. He is also a member of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center's Hematopoietic and Immune Cancer Biology Program.

Dr. Tse’s research interests are focused on three major areas: 1) early phase cancer therapeutics, cellular and immunotherapies for blood cancers and other non-malignant disorders; 2) laboratory-based translational researches in normal and cancer stem cell signaling profiles and pre-clinical animal models for therapeutics.
Registration Now Open: Cancer Disparities Symposium (Virtual)
March 4-5, 2021

The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center Office of Community Outreach and Engagement is pleased to present the 5th Annual Cancer Disparities Symposium, Navigating Cancer Disparities: Lessons Learned and How to Move Forward.
Registration is now open for this multi-disciplinary event for researchers, clinicians, health professionals, community outreach groups, community-based organizations, patient advocates and trainees. Keynote presentations will be delivered by renowned disparities researchers and community leaders, and a poster session highlighting academic research and community programs will provide a showcase of the depth and depth of work happening in this field.

Though the symposium is happening virtually, attendees will experience the conference using Whova, our official web-based conference app, to view presentations and ask questions in real-time, as well as network with others behind the scenes.

Call for Abstracts: Extended Deadline January 29
Multidisciplinary researchers, community agencies and organizations are invited to submit abstracts for presentation at the 5th Annual Cancer Disparities Symposium. Abstracts will be divided into two tracks: Scientific Research and Community Programs. Meritorious abstracts will be selected for pre-recorded presentations. Abstracts must be submitted electronically by 5 pm ET on Friday, January 29, 2021.
Keynote Speakers Announced
Otis W. Brawley, MD, an internationally-recognized expert in cancer prevention and control, will present the symposium's Scientific Keynote His work is focused on closing racial, economic and social disparities in prevention, detection and treatment of cancer in the United States and worldwide.

Worta McCaskill-Stevens, MD, a medical oncologist nationally known for her expertise in bringing clinical trials to the community will present the Community Keynote. Dr. McCaskill-Stevens is Chief of the Community Oncology and Prevention Trials Research Group, which houses the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Community Oncology Research Program (NCORP), a community-based clinical trials network launched in 2014.
Save the Date: Great Lakes Breast Cancer Symposium
May 21, 2021 | Virtual
As host site for the 2021 Great Lakes Breast Cancer Symposium, the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center encourages you to mark your calendar for the symposium scheduled for May 21, 2021.

The symposium highlights ongoing basic, translational, clinical and population studies addressing the biological mechanisms, management and prevention of breast cancer. Researchers from participating institutions will share their exciting work with a goal to develop cross-institutional collaborations.

This year's event features two keynote speakers:
  • Carlos Arteaga, MD, Director of the Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center at UT Southwestern Medical Center
  • Helen Piwnica-Worms, PhD, Professor of Experimental Radiation Oncology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Cancer Stem Cells Conference
POSTPONED to July 11-13, 2022
The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (Case CCC) and the National Center for Regenerative Medicine (NCRM) were greatly looking forward to CSC 2020, originally scheduled for August 4-6, 2020 at Tinkham Veale University Center at Case Western Reserve University. In light of recent events surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, the CSC planning committee has made the difficult decision to postpone the conference until July 11-13, 2022.

In its fourth year, CSC 2022 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. Attendees will join world-class investigators for this three-day summit and network with scientists and clinicians advancing cancer stem cell research and therapeutic applications.
Additional Upcoming Events
Digital Town Hall
January 30, 2021, 7pm
Join this town hall, hosted by The Steven G. AYA Cancer Fund, to learn more about the research program they are contributing to, their legacy wellness programs, their nonprofit media brand for the AYA cancer community, Elephants and Tea, and how they are helping the cancer community know they are not alone in facing cancer, and so much more!
AACR Virtual Meeting: COVID-19 and Cancer
February 3-5, 2021
Join thought leaders from academia, government, and industry for AACR’s 2021 COVID-19 and Cancer virtual meeting. Emerging data in basic, clinical, and epidemiologic research related to COVID-19 and cancer will be presented in a mix of keynote lectures, forums, and symposia.

Session topics include:
  • Biology of COVID-19 and Cancer
  • Cancer Prevention and Early Detection
  • Continuity of Cancer Care
  • Critical Care and Outpatient Management
  • Effects of Cancer Treatments on COVID-19
  • Health Inequities and Disparities
  • Immunology and Pathogenesis
  • Long-term Effects and Survivorship
  • Risk Factors and Comorbidities 
  • Trials in Progress
  • Vaccines
NCCN 2021 Virtual Congress™: Breast Cancer with Updates from the 2020 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS)
Friday, February 12, 2021
Breast cancer continues to be the second most common cause of cancer death in women in the United States. Results from numerous clinical trials continue to expand diagnostic/prognostic tools, therapeutic options, and supportive care strategies. Healthcare professionals need to be educated on current and emerging scientific data to make evidence-based treatment decisions and to provide optimal care for patients with breast cancer.

The NCCN 2021 Virtual Congress™: Breast Cancer with Updates from the 2020 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS) will provide expert insights on the current standard of care for patients with breast cancer and include the latest clinical research updates from the 2020 SABCS to assist clinicians in formulating breast cancer management strategies.
4th Annual International PTEN Symposium
Monday, March 15, 2021
The Genomic Medicine Institute and Center for Personalized Genetic Healthcare at Cleveland Clinic invite you to join the virtual 4th Annual International PTEN Symposium: From Patient-Centered Research to Clinical Care. They are planning an engaging day with an emphasis on advances in the diagnosis, management and treatment of patients with PTEN Hamartoma Tumor Syndrome (PHTS).

Pier Paolo Pandolfi, MD, PhD, FRCP, senior scientist at the Renown Institute for Cancer and honorary professor of molecular biology at the University of Turin, will deliver the morning keynote address. Neil Friedman, MBChB, pediatric neurologist and director of quality, outcomes, and innovation at Barrow Neurological Institute at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, will deliver the afternoon keynote address on the neurological spectrum of PHTS. Other topics include hormone use and high-risk patients, gynecological cancer risks, updates on PTEN clinical trials, and autism. Please refer to the symposium agenda for more details about this year’s speakers and topics.
AACR Annual Meeting 2021
April 10-15 and May 17-21, 2021 | Virtual
The AACR Annual Meeting program covers the latest discoveries across the spectrum of cancer research—from population science and prevention; to cancer biology, translational, and clinical studies; to survivorship and advocacy—and highlights the work of the best minds in research and medicine from institutions all over the world.
AACI Clinical Research Innovation 13th Annual Meeting
July 13-15, 2021
Save the date! The 13th Annual AACI Clinical Research Innovation (CRI) Meeting will be held July 13-15, 2021. Information about the meeting format, abstract submissions, and registration will be made available in early 2021.
Funding Opportunities
CTSC logo
Next Deadline: February 1, 2021
CDMRP logo
The Clinical and Translational Science Collaborative (CTSC) of Case Western Reserve University Core Utilization Pilot Award Program supports investigator use of eligible Core facilities at our partner institutions. This program is designed to collect preliminary data that will lead to extramural sponsored grant funding and/or publications in peer-reviewed journals. Awards up to $10,000 are available. This program is intended to promote the use of technologies and expertise afforded by identified Core Facilities available at all partner institutions.

This program supports initial stages of new research projects, with a special emphasis on innovative, interdisciplinary, and collaborative projects that advance a research project to the point at which it can attract external funding and/or peer-reviewed publications. Ideal uses may be to test specimens already collected, build cross-disciplinary collaborative programs, develop enabling technologies, new diagnostic, therapeutic, or outcomes assessment approaches and/or devices; basic researcher/clinical researcher collaborations; and/or promotion of research in the community.

Due Dates
Proposals are accepted on a rolling basis and must be submitted by 11:59 PM on the first day of every month (if the first falls on a weekend or holiday, the deadline is extended to the next working day).
The Department of Defense and its Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) have announced program details and application instructions for the following FY2021 Breast Cancer Research Program (BCRP).

Available award mechanisms include:
  • Breakthrough Award Levels 1 & 2
  • Breakthrough Award Level 3
  • Breakthrough Award Level 4
  • Era of Hope Scholar Award
  • Innovator Award
  • Transformative Breast Cancer Consortium Award
In The News
News-Medical - November 6, 2020
In this interview, Professor Paul Tesar, PhD and Kevin Allan share how low oxygen levels damage the brain and how, with further research, we could help to develop effective therapies for treating neurological diseases caused by low oxygen levels. Dr. Tesar is a member of the Case CCC.
Mashable - January 11, 2021
"The variant has a competitive advantage. The virus will dominate. The virus will spread faster," Mark Cameron, PhD told Mashable. Dr. Cameron is an immunologist at Case Western Reserve University and member of the Case CCC.
From The NIH
National Cancer Institute Human SARS-CoV-2 Serology Standard Now Available
The National Cancer Institute is pleased to announce that the Human SARS-CoV-2 Serology Standard, a reagent intended to harmonize assays that measure anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, is now available. The standard enables comparisons between different SARS-CoV-2 serology studies, including studies evaluating the immune response to different COVID-19 candidate vaccines.

Developed by researchers at NCI’s Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research, the Human SARS-CoV-2 Serology Standard became available to researchers to order in late December 2020. This US standard will be calibrated to the WHO International Standard when it becomes available, tentatively scheduled for late January 2021.

Researchers may request the Human SARS-CoV-2 Serology Standard by completing the request form available on the FNL website and submitting it to SSNCCbiospecimens@nih.gov.
Request for Information (RFI) regarding opportunities for new national programs at the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research
NCI has released a Request for Information (RFI) seeking input from the cancer research community on the most important needs and promising opportunities in cancer research that are difficult to address on an individual scale but could be tackled through the NCI Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research. This is part of a planning effort to identify unique, large-scale programs of national significance that the FNLCR could support in the interest of the entire cancer research community.

Email responses to RFI_NewNationalPrograms@nih.gov and place "RFI Response" in the subject line. Responses will be accepted through February 19, 2021.
Weekly NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices
COVID-19 Funding Opportunities and Notices
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