The UNM Cancer Center provides developmental funds for pilot projects and translational and interdisciplinary research from a variety of sources, including the CCSG, the State of New Mexico (for Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research), private foundations (Oxnard, Stranahan and Anderson), the American Cancer Society (the ACS Institutional Research Grant) and private donor funds. CCSG and IBC funds are used primarily in support of team-based intra-programmatic and inter-programmatic collaborations with promise to expand our base of translational and clinically focused research projects. Oxnard, Stranahan and Anderson Foundation funds are used both to establish translational research programs by new faculty and to support new translational and clinical research directions by established faculty. ACS IRG funds specifically support mentored pilot projects by new faculty establishing cancer-focused research careers. Additionally, Cancer Center developmental funds support postdoctoral fellows and graduate students working on cancer-focused projects. Matching funds for postdoctoral fellows support projects that simultaneously enhance career development prospects for the postdocs and sharpen the cancer focus of groups of Cancer Center investigators Graduate student support is focused on the integration of students into interdisciplinary research involving teams of cancer biologist, physical and computational scientists and engineers. These awards play major roles in bringing new technologies and computational expertise to the Cancer Center programs. Applications to all these competitions receive rigorous review, either directly by the Cancer Center Senior Leadership Committee or by separate study sections that report to the Senior Leadership as 'Council'. Cancer Center administrative staff request progress reports at the end of each funding year and document outcomes (publications, grants, patents, clinical trials) for 5 years after each award terminates. Here we review how developmental funds were used since 2005 in support of faculty development, the creation of new translational research teams as well as on training the next generation of cancer researchers. We then describe plans to use these critically important funds in the new grant period. We have three main goals for the next funding period: 1) Through a variety of pilot and developmental funding mechanisms, to enable Cancer Center full members to respond to new initiatives and ideas, to bring new members into the Cancer Center programs; and to promote communication and collaboration between clinical and basic scientists in the Cancer Center. In particular: 2) To strengthen our translational research teams through the application of our own discoveries as drivers for new cancer diagnostics and treatment. 3) To strengthen our interdisciplinary research teams through the support of new technology and bomputation to drive the next generation of approaches to the prevention and cure of cancer. The success of our translational and interdisciplinary GPCR30 team, that now includes investigators with expertise in basic cell and molecular biology (E. Prossnitz), new screening technologies (L. Sklar), bioinfonnatics (T. Oprea, C. Bologa), medicinal chemistry (J. Arterburn), animal imaging (H. Hathaway, J. Norenberg) and clinical trials (M. Royce, C. Verschraegen) can be readily traced from NCI developmental funds with Foundation funding to its current strong base of NIH and NCI funding. Continued access to developmental funds is essential for the continued emergence of powerful selfassembling teams in the next five years.
We review how developmental funds were used since 2005 in support of faculty development, the creation of new translational research teams and also on training the next generation of cancer researchers. We then describe plans to use these critically important funds in the new grant period. We have three main goals for as described in the narrative.
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