September 25, 2020
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Member/Center Highlights
Karathanasis, Schiemann lead team fighting breast cancer with nanotechnology and immunotherapy
William Schiemann
Efstathios "Stathis” Karathanasis, PhD and William Schiemann, PhD are leading a team of researchers from the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (Case CCC) and Duke University combining nanotechnology with immunotherapy to treat metastatic breast cancer. The team received a five-year, $3 million grant from the National Cancer Institute to continue research into the engineering of nanoparticles that can wake up “cold” tumors so they can be located and attacked by the immune system.

The research team includes: Efstathios Karathanasis, PhD, an associate professor of biomedical engineering, Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) and member of the Cancer Imaging Program, Case CCC; William Schiemann, PhD, the Goodman-Blum Professor in Cancer Research, CWRU and member of the Molecular Oncology Program, Case CCC; Li Lily Wang, PhD, associate staff, Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute and Member, Hematopoietic and Immune Cancer Biology Program, Case CCC; and Christopher Hoimes, MD, Duke University School of Medicine.
Eng awarded new grant to investigate genomic alterations influencing PTEN hamartoma tumor syndrome
Charis Eng, MD, PhD, received a two-year, nearly $680,000 grant from the PTEN Research Foundation to investigate how genomic alterations influence PTEN hamartoma tumor syndrome (PHTS). With this grant, Dr. Eng’s team will sequence the whole genomes of a large number of PHTS patients from around the world to understand if and how changes in non-coding regions of the genome affect clinical outcomes.

Dr. Eng is the inaugural chair of the Cleveland Clinic Genomic Medicine Institute and inaugural director of the Center for Personalized Genetic Healthcare; Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Genetics and Genome Sciences, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine; Member, Member, Cancer Prevention Control & Population Research Program, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Center for Computational Imaging and Personalized Diagnostics researchers awarded patents
Two patents were recently awarded to inventors from the Center for Computational Imaging and Personalized Diagnostics (CCIPD) at Case Western Reserve University. “Predicting biochemical recurrence and metastasis with computer extracted features from nuclei of tumor and benign regions” and "Predicting prostate cancer biochemical recurrence using combined nuclear NF-KB/P65 localization and gland morphology."

Congratulations to Anant Madabhushi, PhD, F. Alex Nason Professor II, biomedical engineering and Director of CCIPD; Andrew Janowczyk, PhD, Research Assistant Professor, biomedical engineering and CCIPD, Patrick Leo, PhD student in CCIPD; George Lee, PhD, alumnus of CCIPD; and collaborators. Both Dr. Madabhushi and Dr. Janowczyk are members of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center's Cancer Imaging Program.

AACR Releases 2020 Cancer Progress Report
The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) has proudly announced the release of the AACR Cancer Progress Report 2020. This tenth edition of the annual report illustrates how the dedicated efforts of individuals working throughout the cycle of medical research are Turning Science into Lifesaving Care for people in the United States and around the world.

Among the advances made from August 1, 2019, to July 31, 2020, were 20 new therapeutics approved by the FDA for treating patients with various types of cancer and the uses of 15 previously approved anticancer therapeutics that were expanded by the FDA to include the treatment of additional types of cancer. Our current ability to continue the rapid pace of this progress is now in jeopardy because of the enormous global public health challenge posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

As part of the release of this report, the AACR convened a Virtual Congressional Briefing on Wednesday, September 23 to present this groundbreaking work to members of the US Senate and House of Representatives and urge for continued robust, sustained, and predictable increases federal funding to fuel the momentum against cancer.
VeloSano 7 fundraising ends October 1, donations to Team Case CCC riders matched up to $10,000
To-date, the 44 members that comprise Team Case Comprehensive Cancer Center have raised $23,877 and counting for lifesaving cancer research at Cleveland's top-tier hospitals and research institutions.

As we approach the October fundraising deadline, we have some exciting news! Generous team sponsors have guaranteed a dollar-for-dollar match up to $10,000 for any funds raised by our riders up to the deadline! Team Case CCC needs to raise approximately $10,000 to get back into the Top 20 teams rankings and we are working hard to make that happen again this year!
Despite the shift to Virtual VeloSano, our team pressed on and remained committed to participating in their chosen activities - biking, hiking, walking and yes, even gardening. Fundraising for this year's event will continue through October 1, 2020. Thank you to our committed team members, those who have donated to the cause and all who have cheered them on!
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
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 EST.

Today we will hear from William G. Nelson, MD, PhD, presenting, "'NextGen' Cancer Treatments will Feature 'NextEpigen' Approaches."

Dr. Nelson is Director of the Johns Hopkins Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center and is a professor of urology, medicine, pathology, and radiation oncology and molecular radiation sciences at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.

Dr. Nelson and his colleagues and collaborators have shown that epigenetic changes arise at the earliest recognizable steps of transformation in the prostate and persist through invasion, metastasis, and lethal progression.

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
Friday, October 2, 2020, 12p via Zoom
Our weekly seminar series on Friday, October 2 features Lillian L. Siu, MD, FRCPC, FASCO, presenting, "In Pursuit of Multi-Omic Predictive Biomarkers for Immunotherapy via Team Science Approach" at 12 pm via Zoom.

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.
Submit your abstract by today: 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. Submit your abstract by today, Friday, September 25!

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.
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 with any questions or concerns.
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.
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: 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 The program anticipates funding 2 to 4 fellows in this round.
The Harry J. Lloyd Charitable trust is accepting applications for research projects related to melanoma. Only one application per institution in each of the three grant categories may be funded. Average grants are $125,000/year (no IDC) for 1-2 years.

Investigators should submit Specific Aims (one page) and an NIH-style biosketch via the InfoReady application form by October 1, 2020.

Case Comprehensive Cancer Center leadership will review all applicants. Selected nominees will work with their department research administrators and the Case CCC to submit full applications to the sponsor before November 1, 2020.

Applicants must specify their grant category:
  • Career Development: May include salary support for promising young investigators
  • Basic Science: To gain new biological insights into melanoma development or progression
  • Translational Research: To fund clinically important melanoma research

Special consideration given to:
  • Emerging novel concepts that constitute significant innovation
  • New investigators in the field of melanoma
  • Prevention and early detection
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 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.

2019 Awardee Virtual Symposium Talks Now Available
"VeloSano Trainee Dream Experiment" 2019 Awardees presented their projects and outcomes to the cancer research community during a virtual symposium last week. For a link to view these presentations, please contact Case CCC Assistant Director of Training and Education, Damian Junk, PhD at
The AACR-John and Elizabeth Leonard Family Foundation Basic Cancer Research Fellowship encourages and supports postdoctoral or clinical research fellows to establish a successful career path in cancer research. Research proposed for funding may be in any area of basic cancer research.

This fellowship provides a two-year grant of $120,000 to support the salary and benefits of the fellow while working on a mentored basic cancer research project. A partial amount of funds may be designated for non-personnel expenses, such as research/laboratory supplies, equipment, publication charges for manuscripts that pertain directly to the funded project, and other research expenses.
Doris Duke Charitable Foundation
Pre-proposal Deadline: 3p ET November 13, 2020
The Doris Duke Clinical Scientist Development Award provides grants to junior physician scientists to facilitate their transition to independent clinical research careers.

The Clinical Scientist Development Award consists of $150,000 annual direct costs plus $15,000 (10%) annual indirect costs for three years. The priority of the CSDA program is to fund outstanding individuals with potential for clinical research careers, whose projects will address highly significant research questions and lead to career advancement. DDCF does not have funding priorities based on disease area or research type.

In keeping with the wishes expressed in Doris Duke's will, experiments that use animals or tissues derived from animals, including cell lines, will not be supported by this program.
In The News
Spectrum News 1 - September 13, 2020
 A new mathematical model developed by professors at Case Western Reserve University and the University of Akron is helping to predict fluctuations in the number of COVID-19 cases. The model accounts for uncertainties such as the spread of COVID-19 among infected-but-asymptomatic people.
UroToday - September 8, 2020
Shilpa Gupta, MD presents data from ASCO 2020 on bladder cancer in this discussion with Ashish Kamat, MD, MBBS, starting with results from the NABUCCO trial of neoadjuvant immunotherapy options in stage III urothelial cancer. - September 21, 2020
"It’s like watching a never-ending sitcom of 'Newton’s laws gone wild,'" writes associate professor Kishore Guda, DVM, PhD in his Letter to the editor, noting how systemic and structural vulnerabilities have left America susceptible to pandemic losses. Dr. Guda is a member of the Case CCC's GI Cancer Genetics Program.
From The NIH
Weekly NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices
COVID-19 Funding Opportunities and Notices
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