Cancer research at Duke is an interactive and dynamic enterprise that spans the School of Medicine and includes other Duke schools. Eleven major research programs have significant peer-reviewed funding and are operationally supported by DCCI administration and communication activities. The DCCI serves this central role, which helps to facilitate interprogrammatic as well as intraprogrammatic interactions of the research program members. In addition, exciting discoveries are identified early by the DCCI and are supported to facilitate entry into the pre-clinical development pathways and to their eventual use in clinical trials. In addition, the ability of investigators to take observations in the clinic back to the laboratory is facilitated by the DCCI. The DCCI is central to the complex coordination of activities essential to contemporary cancer research and makes possible many activities that would be far too complex to organize without the support of the CCSG. The DCCI was recently reorganized to have institute status at Duke. The DCCI differs from the former DCCC because it incorporates newly added institutional resources and infrastructure provided by significant investments in clinical trials support, as well as recognizes the oversight provided to specific components of departments and the health system. The formal institute status at Duke enhances communication and cooperation among the basic science departments with a significant focus on cancer and both the in-patient and out-patient cancer clinical services. The former Institutional Steering Committee, now named the Cancer Medicine Leadership Council (CMLC), has representatives from all of the relevant Duke clinical and research units (health system, hospital, departments, centers and institutes). All major strategic and operational decisions (e.g. expansion of clinical or research faculty within any of these units; capital investments in facilities or instrumentation; leadership appointments) that fall within the current scope of authority of any of these entities are presented and discussed within this council. Because of the significant administrative changes implemented in the past year, we have refrained for implementing our formal strategic planning until approval of the institute status of the DCCI. We are currently engaged in a strategic planning process being led by Elaine Kuttner of Cambridge Concord Associates and will have our Strategic Plan draft available at the time of the CCSG site visit.

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National Cancer Institute (NCI)
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