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September 6, 2018
Dr. Stan Gerson Stan Gerson, MD
Director, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center

Ned Sharpless MD, National Cancer Institute Director Visit to the Case CCC
As you know, National Cancer Institute (NCI) director Dr. Ned Sharpless visited the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (Case CCC) last month. His visit was coordinated by Justin Lathia, who invited him to speak at the Cancer Stem Cell Conference (CSC), August 6-8, 2018. His visit was a terrific opportunity for Dr. Sharpless to get to know our cancer center and its institutions. 

In his CSC conference presentation, Dr. Sharpless first talked about his scientific research. He pointed out that p16/INK4a cancer progression, through its impact on cell cycle checkpoints, also influenced the aging process. This work has led naturally to an investigation into protection through inhibition of CDK4/6 of hematopoietic stem cells, which is of particular interest in tolerance of these normal stem cells to cytotoxic chemotherapy. An agent he helped to develop is now in clinical trials.

Dr. Sharpless also provided updates on the NCI, including  current initiatives. Stating that this is good time to be a cancer researcher, he noted the increase (11%) in new applications for funding, including new programs to support established investigators and young investigators, and new emphasis on K08 and K88 grants.

Four broad areas of focus for the NCI include:
  1. Workforce development - training the next generation of scientists with renewed emphasis.
  2. Basic science - NCI will not abandon basic science, but will encourage a link to clinical research. 
  3. Big data - NCI will embrace genomics, population, clinical trials and patient reported data to build a better environment for discovery efforts bringing together these datasets.
  4. Clinical trials - NCI supports many trials, but often patients are unsure how to make the best clinical decision with their physician. Cancer centers need increased attention to prioritization of trials for their populations.
Dr. Sharpless also talked about the Cancer Moonshot and related activities.   The NCI Moonshot funding announcements are active, with support extending to 2021.
In addition to delivering his scientific keynote, Dr. Sharpless also took the time to take a whirlwind tour of our hospitals and research facilities, meeting with Case CCC investigators at Lerner Research Institute, Taussig Cancer Institute, University Hospitals, and Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) School of Medicine (SOM), including Drs. John Letterio and Yogen Saunthararajah, program leaders for Developmental Therapeutics (DT), and Dr. Mohamad Abazeed, member of DT; Dr. Jaroslaw Maciejewski, associate director for translational research and program leader for Hematopoietic and Immune Cancer Biology; Dr. Nima Sharifi, program leader for GU Malignancies; Dr. John Wang, program leader for GI Cancer Genetics (GICG), and Dr. Amitabh Chak, member of GICG; Dr. Drew Adams, director of the Small Molecule Shared Resource; and Monica Webb Hooper, PhD, director of the Office of Cancer Disparities Research, and Dr. Jill Barnholtz-Sloan, associate director for bioinformatics/translational informatics.
Dr. Sharpless also met with cancer center leadership -   Drs. Brian Bolwell, Ted Teknos, Ruth Keri, and Mitch Macktay. Each reinforced the commitment and alignment of the organizations towards to goals and values of NCI-designation as a comprehensive cancer center.
Finally, Dr. Sharpless met with our institutional leaders - CWRU President Barbara R. Snyder, Dr. Serpil Ezurum, chair of the Lerner Research Institute, and Dr. Mark Chance, Vice Dean for Research at the CWRU SOM. Each ratified their engagement and support for our cancer research and the value they placed in our center's efforts.
So what did Dr. Sharpless bring back to the NCI? An appreciation of the many layers of institutional support, integration and collaborations across Case CCC programs and sites, and the depth of efforts to improve our research portfolio using colleagues as collaborators across the city.

Sharpless Visit Collage
Sharpless and Gerson Discuss Key Issues in Cancer Care and Research
Be Well graphic During his visit to the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (Case CCC), Dr. Ned Sharpless and Case CCC director Dr. Stan Gerson sat down with ideastream's Kay Colby to discuss key issues related to cancer care and cancer research. Watch the full video.
New Center for Cancer Stem Cell Research Announced
Lerner Research Institute recently announced the formation of its new Center for Cancer Stem Cell Research, with the goal of better understanding cancer stem cells (CSCs), a subset of cancer cells that are particularly aggressive and resistant to treatment. 

Growing evidence supports that CSCs play a critical role in promoting tumor growth, malignant progression, therapeutic resistance and tumor recurrence in many types of cancer, making them an attractive target for developing new treatments. The new center will be home to the many Lerner researchers who study the role of CSCs in cancers of the brain, colon, rectum, breast, lung, bone marrow (leukemia) and more. Members will include researchers from both the Lerner Research and Taussig Cancer Institutes.

Shideng Bao The new center will bolster Lerner's already strong portfolio of CSC research, help promote collaboration and accelerate the translation of basic research into clinical trials. A  finding from the laboratory of  Shideng Bao, PhD, the center's director, has already been moved to clinical trial, demonstrating the scientific and clinical impact the Center for CSC Research will help to foster.

The Bao lab found that Ibrunitib, a drug already approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat lymphoma and leukemia, may help treat glioblastoma (GBM)-the most lethal primary brain tumor-by targeting a CSC-related pathway. The research speedily moved from the lab bench to the clinic as it is already in trial, testing Ibrutinib's effectiveness when combined with radiation or chemotherapy for treating GBM.

Dr. Bao, Staff,  Department of Cancer Biology , has been a member of the Lerner Research Institute staff since 2008 and is a member of the Molecular Oncology Program in the  Case Comprehensive Cancer Center more>
3rd Annual Cancer Disparities Symposium
Mar 1, 2019 | Tinkham Veale University Center
Case CCC logoThe 3rd Annual Cancer Disparities Symposium will be held Friday, Mar 1, 2019. 

2019 Symposium Highlights
  • Keynote presentations by renowned disparities researchers and community leaders
  • Scientific Keynote presentation by Rick Kittles, PhD, Associate Director of Health Equities, Comprehensive Cancer Center; Professor and Director, Division of Health Equities, Department of Population Sciences, City of Hope
  • Poster session highlighting academic research and community programs
  • Networking session
  • All attendee forum
Call for Abstracts
The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center invites multidisciplinary researchers, community agencies and organizations to submit abstracts for presentation at the 3rd Annual Cancer Disparities Symposium. Abstracts will be divided into two tracks: Scientific Research and Community Programs. Meritorious abstracts will be selected for oral presentations. 

Abstracts must be submitted via email ( by 5pm EST on December 4, 2018.

Cancer Center Seminar Series
Fridays, 12p | WRB 1-413
The 2018-2019 Cancer Center Seminar Series starts soon! This weekly, interdisciplinary seminar series addresses cutting-edge clinical, translational, and basic research topics in cancer.

Stephen Thomas Join us Friday, September 14 at 12p in the WRB 1-413 to hear invited speaker, Stephen B. Thomas, PhD, present " Eliminating Racial & Ethnic Health Disparities." Dr. Thomas is professor of Health Services Administration and director of the Maryland Center for Health Equity at the University of Maryland School of Public Health. This seminar is p resented by the Office of Cancer Disparities Research, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center. 

Dr. Stephen B. Thomas is co-director of the MPH Health Equity degree program and founding director of the Maryland Center for Health Equity, an NIH-NIMHD designated Center of Excellence on Race, Ethnicity and Health Disparities Research, at the University of Maryland in College Park. Dr. Thomas has certificates in Bioethics and a proven record of success with engagement of racial and ethnic minority populations in biomedical and public health research. In 2012, he was a member of the Maryland Health Quality and Cost Council's Health Disparity Work Group; the final report was translated into legislation and passed into law as the Maryland Health Improvement and Disparities Reduction Act of 2012.  In 2014, Dr. Thomas was appointed to the Maryland Health Care Commission, an independent regulatory agency whose mission is to plan for health system needs, promote informed decision-making, increase accountability, and improve access to quality care. Dr. Thomas has extensive experience in overcoming barriers associated with the legacy of the Syphilis Study Done at Tuskegee and conducting scientifically sound and culturally tailored community based interventions designed to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities to achieve health equity. He is co investigator on NIH m.Health grant, Health ePeople study designed to gather cardiovascular data from study participants through devices such as smartphone apps ECG smartphone cases and portable blood pressure cuffs, with a goal of enrolling 1 million participants. He currently serves as grant reviewer for the NIH Health Disparities and Equity Promotion Study Section (HDEP) Healthcare Delivery and Methodologies IRG Center for Scientific Review. Dr. Thomas believes building trust between researchers and health disparity populations is key to increasing participation of underrepresented minorities in clinical and public health research.
Stand Up To Cancer Telecast
Stand up to Cancer 8p, Sep 7, 2018
The 2018 Stand Up To Cancer live fundraising special brings together all the networks and the biggest stars in entertainment, for one night of music, laughter, and inspiration.
With a dazzling array of top talent, SU2C will return on Friday, September 7, for the sixth roadblock telecast.
This year's event marks an important milestone in SU2C history: 10 years of making an impact and raising funds for groundbreaking cancer research that is helping to save lives now. An essential part of SU2C's mission is to leverage the entertainment industry in a way that spreads our message and engages the public.
Strategies for long-distance caregiving
The New York Times - Sep 4, 2018
A few months ago, my biggest sources of anxiety were politics, my finances, and whether I'd make my next work deadline. Then one afternoon my mother called to tell me she had leukemia...Sara L. Douglas, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, professor of nursing and assistant dean for research at the Case Western Reserve University Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing is the primary investigator of the study, which is called "Closer: A Videoconference Intervention for Distance Caregivers." The research, funded by the National Institute of Nursing Research, aims to discern the extent to which using technologies can help distance caregivers connect with their loved one in meaningful ways.
Helio/HemOnc Today - Aug 30, 2018
ASCO released updated recommendations that incorporate new evidence related to second-line therapy for patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer who progressed on or experienced intolerable toxicity during first-line therapy.  The recommendations - issued earlier this year - incorporate research published since the society released its initial guidelines in 2016. 
"With this most recent update, ASCO has offered a much more structured guideline. There is an order of preference for treatment and it is a useful tool for clinicians," Davendra P.S. Sohal, MD, MPHCase Comprehensive Cancer Center, assistant professor of medicine and director of the clinical genomics program at Taussig Cancer Institute at Cleveland Clinic and a HemOnc Today Next Gen Innovator, said during an interview.
Archie Bleyer AYA Cancer Trailblazer Award
Deadline: Oct 5, 2018
In 2014, Critical Mass: The Young Adult Cancer Alliance introduced the Archie Bleyer Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) Oncology Trailblazer Award sponsored by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. This award is named for Dr. Archie Bleyer-the godfather of AYA oncology-who has spent more than 40 years advocating on behalf of adolescent and young adult cancer patients in the United States and around the world.

The  Archie  Bleyer  AYA  Trailblazer  Award  recognizes  leaders  who  have  transformed  the  field of  adolescent  and  young  adult  (AYA)  oncology  through  creative  and  lasting  contributions  to research,  advocacy,  and/or  clinical  care. Recipients  embody  Dr. Bleyer 's values and have demonstrated a commitment to:
  • Collaboration and mentorship within their field;
  • Advocacy on behalf of all AYAO patients, survivors, and loved ones no matter the disease;
  • Presenting innovative solutions to unique barriers faced by AYAs;
  • Forging enduring connections and collaborations ; and
  • Propelling the AYA movement forward even through uncharted territory.
FY18 DOD KCRP Program Announcements
CDMRP logo LOI: Sep 20, 2018
Full Application: Oct 10, 2018
Deadline have been extended for the Fiscal Year 2018 (FY18) funding opportunities for the Department of Defense (DOD) Kidney Cancer Research Program (KCRP) being managed by the office of Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP).  The letter of intent (pre-application) deadline  has been extended to September 20, 2018  and the full application submission deadline  has been extended to October 10, 2018  for the following mechanisms:
NIH BULLETIN- Notices and Funding Opportunities
Additional Awards Eligible for PA-18-906 Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp)(NOT-OD-18-226)

Program Announcements
Feasibility Studies to Build Collaborative Partnerships in Cancer Research (P20 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)(PAR-18-911)
Deadline: Nov 14, 2018; Nov 13, 2019; Nov 13, 2020
Fri, Sep 7
Hem Onc Division Research Conference/Grand Rounds
Matthew Cooney, MD
Interim Division Chief of Hematology and Oncology;  Associate Professor, Division of Hematology and Oncology, CWRU/UH
"Role of executive coaching in healthcare"
8a Wearn 137
Tues, Sep 11
Cancer Impact Lecture
Ulrich Steidl, MD, PhD
Leader, Stem Cells Differentiation & Cancer, Albert Einstein Cancer Center
"Understanding and targeting the origins of MDS and AML"
1p NE1-205
Wed, Sep 12
PRCHN Seminar 
Darcy Freedman, PhD, MPH
Associate Director, PRCHN, Associate Professor, Population and Quantitative Health Sciences, CWRU
"Integrating systems science into efforts to promote nutrition equity"
12p  B-03 PRCHN Meeting Rm
Thurs, Sep 13
Developmental Therapeutics Journal Club
9a R4-103

Molecular Biology & Microbiology Seminar
CFAR Leader Speaker: Eric Hunter
"Impact of the transmitted founder virus genotype and sex on subsequent disease progression"
1p SOM W203
Fri, Sep 14
Taussig Cancer Institute Grand Rounds
Daphne Haas-Kogan, MD Dana Farber
"Rational incorporation of novel agents into multimodality therapy of gliomas"
8a CA5-120

Cancer Center Seminar Series
Stephen B. Thomas, PhD Professor, Health Services Administration; Director, Maryland Center for Health Equity University of Maryland, School of Public Health " Eliminating racial & ethnic health disparities"
12p WRB 1-413
Mon, Sep 17
Cancer Center Research Chalk Talk
G. Valentin Börner, PhD
Associate Professor, Biological, Geological, and Environmental Sciences, Cleveland State University
"Homologous chromosome interactions
as safeguard of genome stability"
1p WRB 3-136
Tues, Sep 18
Cancer Impact Lecture
Andrew Intlekoker, MD PhD
Lymphoma Service, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
1p CA5-120A

CDDR Meeting
Shaun Stauffer, PhD
Director, Center for Therapeutics Discovery, Cleveland Clinic
3p WRB 1-422D
Thurs, Sep 20
Developmental Therapeutics Journal Club
9a R4-013
Fri, Sep 21
Cancer Center Seminar Series
H. Charles Manning, PhD Director, Vanderbilt Center for Molecular Probes; Professor of Radiology, Chemistry, Biomedical Engineering, Neurosurgery, and Chemical and Physical Biology, Vanderbilt Ingram; Professor of Cancer Research and VICC Director of Cancer Imaging Research, VU Institute of Imaging Science
"PET imaging tracers and inhibitors of cancer metabolism" 
12p WRB 10413


Deadline: Open

Deadline: Open

Deadline: Open
Case Comprehensive Cancer Center 
2103 Cornell Road, Ste 1422
Cleveland, OH 44106-7285