MD Anderson receives $22.2 million in CPRIT research funding

MD Anderson News Release 11/20/2015

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center was awarded more than $22 million in research grants this week from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT). Thirty-six percent of funds awarded for Individual Investigator Awards (IIA) went to MD Anderson faculty as well as nearly 40 percent of funds awarded for recruitment, reflecting the excellence and impact of the institution’s world-class cancer researchers and star recruitment candidates.

Across Texas institutions, CPRIT awarded a total of $112 million in 73 new grants. MD Anderson CPRIT awards included $14.8 million for research, $6 million in recruitment funding and $1.4 million for evidence-based cancer prevention services. Consistent with MD Anderson’s broad research program, these CPRIT awards will fund exciting studies in cancers of the liver, skin, pancreas, and ovary, as well as lymphoma, leukemia and other cancers. A full listing of individual awards can be found below.

“We are extremely grateful to the citizens of Texas for supporting truly important and life-saving cancer research. CPRIT is helping our gifted faculty in Making Cancer History,” said MD Anderson President Ronald DePinho, M.D. “This vital funding also has proved to be a powerful force in attracting the nation’s best research talent to our institution. I applaud our investigators who were awarded funding, as well as all the scientists, clinicians and citizens who share our goal of ending cancer.”

MD Anderson awards include the following:
•  Amplified gold nanoparticle-mediated radiosensitization of tumors – $899,309
•  Imaging-based quantitative analysis of vascular perfusion and tissue oxygenation 
   to improve therapy of hepatocellular carcinoma – $885,901
•  Understanding biological and physical factors affecting response to proton 
   therapy to improve clinical effectiveness – $879,362
•  Exploiting molecular and metabolic dependencies to optimize personalized 
   therapeutic approaches for melanoma – $900,000
•  Mechanisms and targeting strategies for SWI/SNF mutations in cancer – $900,000
•  Visualizing T-cell trafficking – $900,000
•  An adaptive personalized clinical trial using a patient-derived xenograft strategy to 
   overcome ibrutinib resistance in cell lymphoma – $841,606
•  Investigating the genetic and molecular mechanisms underlying RAS/ERK 
  substrate network – $900,000
•  Regulation of infiltration and function of tumor-resident CD8 T-cells by IL-15 
   – $828,060
•  Exosomal DNA as a surrogate biomarker for early diagnosis and therapeutic 
   stratification in pancreatic cancer – $891,938
•  Nanoparticle targeted STAT3 immune expression – $888,429
•  Clinical safety and efficacy of third-party, fucosylated cord blood-derived regular 
   T-cells to prevent graft versus host disease – $900,000
•  Radiogenomic screen to identify novel proliferation associated glioblastoma 
   genomic therapeutic targets: discovery and mechanistic validation study 
   – $897,627
•  Identifying new epigenetic vulnerabilities in pancreatic cancer - $900,000
•  A novel epigenetic reader as therapeutic target in MLL-translocated pediatric 
    leukemias – $900,000
•  Early detection of ovarian cancer with tumor-associated proteins and 
    autoantibodies – $1,497,595
•  Improving service delivery to cancer survivors in primary care settings – $1,374,127

CPRIT has awarded grants to Texas researchers, institutions, non-profits and private enterprises and provides funding through its research, scientific and product development and prevention programs. Programs made possible with CPRIT funding have reached every corner of the state, brought more than 100 distinguished researchers to Texas, advanced scientific and clinical knowledge, and provided more than 2.6 million life-saving education, training, prevention and early detection services to Texans.