October 2, 2020
Director's Message
Health Care Forums and Our Distinguished Medical Community
Stan Gerson, MD
Director, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center
Last week, the School of Medicine held a series of four live, virtual health care forums as a run-up to this week’s presidential debate at our Health Education Campus. Attendance was good for all four forums, the discussions were lively and those who attended asked the moderators and panelists some terrific questions.

Each forum addressed critical topics facing global health care today. Collectively, the forums provided us an opportunity to demonstrate the world-class powerhouse that is Cleveland’s medical community. We discussed how our collaborative hospital and public health efforts are managing COVID-19 locally; how tax dollars are at work helping to advance medical research toward breakthrough discoveries; how we are driving to secure public health for underserved populations in our communities; and how critical investments in biotech have helped us adapt to the current pandemic and prepare us for the next crisis.
If you missed the live forums, you can watch them on our YouTube channel. View the playlist of all four forums here.

Or link below to watch the forums individually:

After watching, we believe you will discover all the things that make our community such a robust leader in health care, one of the very best on the planet.

My sincere thanks to our moderators and panelists for their participation in our Health Care Forums, to our outstanding medical community who, day after day, rise to the challenge and save lives, and to you, for watching.
The above message was distributed by the School of Medicine on September 29.
Associate Director's Message
Cancer Center Seminar Series
Ruth Keri, PhD
Associate Director for Basic Research,
Case Comprehensive Cancer Center
Like the leaves changing in fall, the start of a new semester signals the return of the Cancer Center Seminar Series (CCSS). The Program Leaders have engaged an exceptional and diverse slate of speakers from cancer centers spanning the country who will discuss the clinical, translational, population, and basic science of cancer. Although the pandemic mandates a virtual format, I am pleased to say that the seminar series remains a vibrant forum for the sharing of ideas and new discoveries. Attendance has flourished with this new model and I encourage you to “drop in” from your office or home every Friday at 12:00 pm EST. We also continue to host mini-retreats with every external speaker prior to the seminar and all members of the Center are invited to attend. You will hear updates from your colleagues as well as input from the speaker. If you wish to access the mini-retreats noted on the weekly fliers, please reach out to Kelsey Kirsch (kxk666@case.edu) for a Zoom invite.
Upcoming highlights include:

  • October 2: Lillian Siu, MD, University of Toronto and Princess Margaret Cancer Centre
  • October 16, Olof Pearson lecture in hormone-responsive malignancies: Myles Brown, MD, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
  • October 23: Xiongbin Lu, PhD, Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center
  • October 30: Trevor Archer, PhD, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health

We hope you will join us for the seminars with your colleagues and look forward to some very insightful discussions!
Member/Center Highlights
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Interdisciplinary team awarded grant to develop device for instantly detecting oral cancer
From The Daily: Mouth lesions are among the main early indicators of oral cancer, but determining whether a sore is actually malignant typically involves painful, costly biopsies. Case Western Reserve researchers think they have a better idea—and the National Institutes of Health has given them $420,000 to advance it.

Highly collaborative in nature, the project teams researchers from the university’s schools of dental medicine, medicine and engineering. Their concept combines imaging and algorithmic technologies to assess whether or not a lesion’s cells are malignant.
Aaron Weinberg
"The idea is to quickly, easily, non-invasively and cost-effectively determine if a suspicious lesion is cancerous, or in other cases, to screen individuals on a regular basis to see if their lesion has progressed to cancer," said dental faculty member Aaron Weinberg, DMD, PhD, the project’s principal investigator.

Dr. Weinberg, a member of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center's Cancer Prevention Control & Population Research Program, is joined in the research by Umut Gurkan, PhD, the Warren E. Rupp Associate Professor at the Case School of Engineering; Anant Madabhushi, PhD, the F. Alex Nason Professor II of Biomedical Engineering and director of the Center for Computational Imaging and Personalized Diagnostics; and Rod Rezaee, MD associate professor in the Department of Otolaryngology at the School of Medicine and University Hospitals.
Recommended Reading: A comprehensive analysis of clinical trials in pancreatic cancer: what is coming down the pike?
Jordan Winter
On the cover of issue 38 of Oncotarget, you'll see a figure summarizing the time and cost for drug development published in a recent article from researchers at the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center and Atrium Health. Their study is the first to analyze the current pancreatic cancer clinical trial landscape to better understand the pipeline of new therapies for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), the most aggressive of the common cancers (Katayama, Oncotarget, 2020).

The team, led by Jordan Winter, MD, includes Erryk Katayama, Jonathan Hue, MD, David Bajor, MD, Lee Ocuin, MD, John Ammori, MD and Jeffrey Hardacre, MD. Researchers noted, "there have been no paradigm-shifting advances beyond combination chemotherapy in the pancreatic cancer field over the past two decades. This contrasts with many other common cancers, which have benefited from impactful targeted therapies," signaling, "an urgent need to develop novel and effective treatments." The study's findings lay the groundwork for discussions of resource allocation with the intent to accelerate innovation that improves patient outcomes.
Thank you for your support of #TeamCaseCCC in VeloSano 7!
Not unlike any other event planned for this year, VeloSano 7 quickly adapted to a virtual format where team members ultimately had newfound flexibility in their fundraising by choosing to participate in an independent activity.

Many members of Team Case Comprehensive Cancer Center remained committed to mounting their bikes for the cause, while others hiked, walked and even tended to their gardens as they raised funds for cancer research at Cleveland's top-tier hospitals and research institutions.

Online fundraising for VeloSano 7 concluded yesterday, October 1. So far, numbers reflect that the 44 members that make up this year's VeloSano Team Case Comprehensive Cancer Center have raised $24,652 for the 2020 movement, with offline donations and company matches still to be counted. As fundraising for VeloSano 7 comes to an official close, we want to thank all of our dedicated team members, those who have graciously given to the cause and all supporters who have cheered them on! We are so grateful to have your support, on and off our bikes.
$2.3M award from NIH granted to CWRU researchers study COVID-19 in nursing homes
The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (Case CCC) extends congratulations to Mark Cameron, PhD, part of a team of researchers recently awarded $2.3 million from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to study epidemiology, transmission, and immunology of COVID-19 in long-term care facilities.

Dr. Cameron, a member of the Case CCC's Hematopoietic and Immune Cancer Biology Program, along with David Canaday, MD of the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and Stefan Gravenstein, MD, MPH of Brown University hope to better understand how the disease spreads in nursing homes and how to identify its presence earlier in able to optimize interventions that could spare thousands of families of painful losses from the novel coronavirus.
Case CCC COVID-19 Resource Hub
As the COVID-19 outbreak progresses, the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (Case CCC) has centralized COVID-19 related news, resources and funding opportunities for our cancer center community. Content is updated regularly.

To have a cancer-focused resource added to the page, please email cancer@case.edu.
What's Coming Up
Mark Your Calendar
Cancer Center Seminar Series
Today at Noon via Zoom
Join the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (Case CCC) for our weekly interdisciplinary seminar series addressing cutting-edge clinical, translational and basic research topics in cancer each Friday at 12 pm ET.

Today we will hear from Lillian Siu, MD, presenting, "In Pursuit of Multi-Omic Predictive Biomarkers for Immunotherapy via Team Science Approach."

Dr. Siu is a professor at the University of Toronto. She is also Senior Medical Oncologist and Director of Phase I Program as well as Co-Leader of the Tumor Immunotherapy Program and BMO Chair in Precision Cancer Genomics at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre in Toronto, Canada.

Dr. Siu’s major research focus is in the area of new anticancer drug development, particularly with respect to phase I trials and head and neck malignancies. She is the Principal Investigator of a phase I cooperative agreement UM1 award sponsored by the United States National Cancer Institute. In addition to her active research in early phase clinical trials, she has been leading genomic initiatives and immuno-oncology trials at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre. Together, the three programs of drug development, cancer genomics, and tumor immunotherapy form a triad of synergy that supports the institution's core vision to deliver precision cancer medicine.

Due to institutional health restrictions, the seminar will continue to be held available virtually via Zoom this semester. Attendees will be muted upon entry and are encouraged to submit questions via chat or audio when appropriate.

CME credit will still be available for those who attend seminars live via Zoom. Contact Kelsey Kirsch for more information.
Cancer Center Seminar Series presents: The Olof Pearson Lecture
Friday, October 16, 2020, 12p via Zoom
While there is no seminar on Friday, October 9, our Friday, October 16 seminar features Myles Brown, MD, presenting the Olof Pearson Lecture in hormone-responsive malignancies at 12 pm ET via Zoom.

Dr. Brown is Director of the Center for Functional Cancer Epigenetics at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Eiml Frei III Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Dr. Brown’s research laboratory focuses on elucidating the epigenetic factors underlying the action of steroid hormones. This work has important implications both for normal physiology and for the treatment of hormone dependent malignancies including breast and prostate cancer. He is recognized for three seminal discoveries. His lab opened the steroid receptor coregulator field, illuminated the dynamic nature of receptor and coregulator interaction with the genome and elucidated the importance of epigenetically determined distant cis-regulatory steroid receptor binding sites. His contributions have uniquely reformulated the understanding of steroid hormone action in normal physiology and in hormone-dependent cancer.
2020 Graft versus Host Disease Virtual Symposium
October 2, 2020

The Meredith A. Cowden Foundation has hosted the GvHD National Symposium since 2010, focusing on cutting edge research and new treatments.

Due to COVID-19 and the restrictions related to this pandemic, and the potential risks for symposium participants who may already be immunocompromised, the Foundation has decided to postpone the annual in-person meeting.

To address the continuing need to serve the community, the Foundation has decided to host a short ‘virtual’ symposium on Friday, October 2, 2020. This free, 2-hour event will consist of a clinical presentation by Dr. Dan Couriel from the University of Utah, followed by a patient-centered Q&A panel hosted by the GvHD planning committee.
Artificial Intelligence in Oncology Virtual Symposium 2020
October 19-20, 2020

The second annual Artificial Intelligence in Oncology Symposium will bring together experts in AI and machine learning as well as clinical, industry and federal agency experts in pathology, radiology, drug discovery, and ethics and policy to speak on research developments, regulatory policy, reimbursement and ethics surrounding AI in oncology. For the health and safety of all attendees, this year's symposium will take place virtually.

Join us for four focused sessions, with international speakers and panel discussions providing unique perspectives on how AI and machine learning are impacting the major areas of radiology, pathology and -omics in the contexts of precision medicine approaches for characterizing tumors and predicting therapeutic response.

Beyond the science, attendees will be able to network and enjoy a special session highlighting some of the brightest rising stars in the field of AI in oncology, selected from abstract submissions.

Geraldine McGinty, MD, MBA, FACR will present the symposium plenary, "Fostering a Strong Ecosystem for AI in Medical Imaging." Dr. McGinty is an internationally recognized expert in imaging economics, Chair of the American College of Radiology Board of Chancellors and Chief Strategy and Contracting Officer at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City.

Additional keynotes in drug discovery, ethics & policy and pathology will be delivered by Russ Altman, MD, PhD of Stanford University, Aashima Gupta, MS of Google, Vinay Prasad, MD, MPH of the University of California, San Francisco, and Yinyin Yuan, PhD of the Institute of Cancer Research, London. Learn more about AIO 2020 speakers.
Case Western Reserve University Case Comprehensive Cancer Center Logo in dark CWRU blue
Case CCC Fall Clinical Research Retreat
October 28, 2020, 5-7p via Zoom
The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center's Fall Clinical Research Retreat will be held virtually on October 28, 2020 from 5-7 pm.

The retreat theme is, "Immunotherapy in Cancer Research." The retreat will include a presentation by Leland Metheny, MD, Chair of the Case CCC Protocol Review and Monitoring Committee (PRMC) and a keynote presentation from Timothy Chan, MD, PhD, Director of Immunotherapy and Precision Immuno-Oncology at Cleveland Clinic.

Registration is required.
Multidisciplinary Colorectal Oncology Course
November 6, 2020, 9a-12:30p
This symposium will focus on providing an in-depth and up-to-date review of the multidisciplinary management of colorectal cancers.

Oncologists, surgeons, radiation oncologists and nurses with an interest in the management of patients with colorectal cancer should participate in this course.

The Cleveland Clinic Foundation Center for Continuing Education designates this live activity for a maximum of 3.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™.
Biomedical Graduate Student Symposium (Virtual)
November 9-10, 2020
The Biomedical Graduate Student Symposium (BGSS) is a student-run event that celebrates student research in the School of Medicine at CWRU. This event will consist of student poster presentations, student oral presentations, and a keynote address from Dr. Yasmine Belkaid, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). BGSS will also partner with the Career Opportunities for Trainees Series (COTS) for a career panel (details and panelists to be announced).

Contact casebgss@gmail.com with any questions or concerns.
Additional Upcoming Events
NCCN 2020 Virtual Congress: Hematologic Malignancies
October 9-10, 2020
Attend this NCCN virtual congress to hear from world-renowned experts in the management of Hematologic Malignancies present the latest treatment advances, updates to the standard of care as recommended in the NCCN Guidelines®, and unique and challenging patient cases.

Co-chaired by Ranjana H. Advani, MD, Stanford Cancer Institute, and Andrew D. Zelenetz, MD, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, this virtual program features presentations and interactive discussions highlighting the treatment options and supportive care for a variety of hematological malignancies.

This program is approved for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ for physicians and will award contact hours for nurses, pharmacists, and other health care professionals.
NCCN 2021 Annual Conference: Call for Abstracts
Abstract Deadline: November 11, 2020
NCCN is now accepting abstracts for consideration to be presented during the NCCN 2021 Annual Conference General Poster Session at the Rosen Shingle Creek in Orlando, Florida on Thursday, March 18 and Friday, March 19, 2021. NCCN welcomes original abstracts from investigators in the general oncology community. Submissions will be accepted from academic institutions, teaching and community hospitals, or industry. Both NCCN and non-NCCN institutions may participate.

Research may fall into the general areas below:

  • Clinical Oncology (all phases)
  • Pre-Clinical Oncology
  • Epidemiology/Risks/Prevention
  • Correlative/Genomic
  • Best Practices in Implementation and Use of Clinical Practice Guidelines
  • Quality Improvement
  • Outcomes and Health Services Research
  • Bioinformatics/Information Technology Sciences
Sixth Computational Approaches for Cancer Workshop (CAFCW20)
Workshop: November 13, 2020
The National Cancer Institute Center for Biomedical Informatics and Information Technology and SC20 are seeking abstracts for presentations for the Sixth Computational Approaches for Cancer Workshop (CAFCW20). CAFCW20 is a workshop designed to bring together clinicians, cancer biologists, mathematicians, data scientists, computational scientists, engineers, developers, thought leaders, and anyone else interested in advancing computation to use in cancer care and research. This year’s topic is “AI and HPC: Overcoming Data Challenges in Cancer Research and Clinical Applications.”

A special emphasis for the CAFCW20 is the role of HPC and AI to address research challenges when data are limited by availability, variability and size. The workshop will be held in conjunction with SC20: The International Conference on High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage and Analysis in Atlanta, GA., on November 15.
SGO 2021 Annual Meeting
Abstract Deadline: October 23, 2020
Annual Meeting: March 20-23, 2021
The Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) Annual Meeting on Women’s Cancer is a comprehensive forum for the subspecialty of gynecologic oncology. Whether you’re a physician, surgeon, researcher, allied health professional or a student in the field, you can join us to make the connections that will boost your career, see what’s new in gynecologic oncology science and research, and learn the best practices and techniques that can take your care to the next level.

The Call for Abstracts and Surgical Films for the SGO 2021 Annual Meeting on Women’s Cancer is open through October 23, 2020. Call for Late-breaking abstracts will be open December 1, 2020 through January 4, 2021.
Funding Opportunities
CWRU SOM logo - png

Deadline: Today, Friday, October 2, 2020
The newly established CWRU Translational Fellow Program (TFP) seeks to train individuals in entrepreneurship and the translation of innovation to benefit humanity by connecting them to programs and workshops around campus while protecting time for entrepreneurial activities.

The pilot year began July 2020, with a second cohort starting November 1st. TFP is therefore seeking applications from individuals interested in a career in technology commercialization, especially (but not limited to) doctoral students or post-docs, to work through the process of developing a technology for commercialization beginning 11/1/2020.

  • 20% salary coverage for 12 months, for those currently paid through CWRU
  • Training and support for commercialization efforts
  • Entrepreneurship/commercialization mentoring team

  • Commitment to one day/week (20%) set aside for moving the technology to market
  • Attendance at meetings/workshops (monthly group meetings, workshops 4-6 times/year)

  • Ideally a senior doctoral student (ideally in their final year) or post-doc at CWRU, but
  • consideration will be given to others
  • Either currently working with a PI on a CWRU-based technology that has the potential for
  • commercialization or willingness to be paired with a PI
  • Must be willing to commit to 20% effort for one full year, starting November 1, 2020

Questions may be directed to Cheryl Thompson, PhD, Associate Professor and Assistant Dean of Educational Initiatives, School of Medicine, at cheryl@case.edu. The program anticipates funding 2 to 4 fellows in this round.
The NCI has announced a Request for Applications for the Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Fellow Transition (F99/K00) Award for 2020, to support outstanding PhD candidates as they complete their dissertation research training (F99 phase; 1-2 years) and transition to a mentored, cancer-focused postdoctoral career development research positions (K00 phase – up to 4 years).

The F99/K00 award is open to 3rd or 4th year PhD students, including F31 Fellowship applicants and current awardees (note that 3 rd or 4 th year students would have matriculated in 2017 or 2018). International students may also apply. Students Matriculated in a dual-degree program (e.g.) MD/PhD, DO/PhD, DDS/PhD, or DVM/PhD) are not eligible for the F99/K00 program. Projects must be clearly focused on cancer.

To apply for this award, an applicant must be nominated by their institution. As each institution is allocated only one nomination, the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (Case CCC) requires potential applicants to assemble a pre-application.

Click here to download nomination application instructions. Contact Damian Junk at damian.junk@case.edu for additional information.
VeloSano logo
With the generous support from VeloSano Bike to Cure, the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (Case CCC) is again providing funding for Case CCC Trainee Associate Members to perform their “dream experiment.”

The experiment should catalyze highly innovative and impactful projects and help strengthen fellowship and career development grant applications. The intent of the award is to support a single or limited set of innovative experiments, not for general laboratory supplies/projects or maintenance of the trainee’s project.

Up to five (4) projects will be funded at $10,000/award. Research projects must be completed within one (1) year, with funds expended by June 30, 2021.
The Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation is accepting applications for their Physician-Scientist Training Award.

The four-year award provides a total of $460,000 of support, enabling individuals to pursue research intensively (at least 80% effort) for up to four years, while, if they wish to maintain their clinical skills, continuing to be clinically active (no more than 20% effort).

The program aims are a) to transform these individuals into the highest quality physician-scientists, capable of conducting research that has the potential to transform the diagnosis, treatment and/or prevention of cancer and b) to eliminate the financial disincentive to entering this career path.
In The News
Knowable Magazine - September 15, 2020
Case Western Reserve University virologist Jonathan Karn, PhD explains that persistent viruses of the non-latent kind often find safe spaces to hang out — sanctuary sites, as virologists term these spots. Viruses can lie low in many places, but certain body parts are favored because immune cells don’t surveil or protect them as closely as the rest of the body. Dr. Karn is a member of the Case CCC.
Cleveland 19 News - September 30, 2020
 Organizers turned the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland Clinic into a venue to house a small audience for the debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic candidate former Vice President Joe Biden.
From The NIH
Weekly NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices

Funding Opportunities

Standard Dates Apply

Only accepting applications for the AIDS Application Due Dates: January 7, 2021, May 7, 2021, January 7, 2022, May 7, 2022, January 7, 2023
COVID-19 Funding Opportunities and Notices
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