The goal of the Career Development Program is to prepare new investigators for independent careers in translational lung cancer research. It is expected that awardees will spend 1 to 2 years in a productive scientific environment with SPORE support and mentoring, after which time they will establish independent programs in research related to lung cancer. The Career Development Committee annually reviews the progress of each awardee by reviewing written reports, attending research presentations and through discussions with the awardee and the awardee's mentor. The Committee also solicits applications for new awardees. This is done by campus-wide communications, by personally approaching promising candidates, and by soliciting input from SPORE investigators. Applicants submit a proposed course of research that is reviewed by the committee. The committee also interviews applicants and mentors. The central criterion for selection of candidates is that they be junior investigators who are likely to develop independent careers in lung cancer research. Awardees are selected primarily for their potential for a successful career in independent research, secondarily for the mentor's laboratory or clinical project in which they propose to work (if not their own laboratory), and finally for the quality of the research proposal. All factors are critical for selection. However, as the ultimate goal of the program is to develop new investigators for independent careers in lung cancer research, an outstanding mentor and project cannot make up for a candidate with lesser personal and academic characteristics. Efforts are made to attract minority and female candidates. Awardees present yearly at the SPORE Program Seminar Series, with the mentor and SPORE Executive Committee members present. The presentation is followed by a discussion between the awardee, mentor and the Executive Committee. The SPORE Executive Committee which makes the final selection of awardees based on the CDP Committee's recommendations. For the renewal period we are requesting $50,000 grant support which will be matched with $50,000 of institutional funds to allow on average funding of two awardees per year. We believe the program has been successful. In the past 2 grant cycles, we have supported 10 awardees, in addition to two recent awards. All of the 10 continue in lung cancer research;3/10 are under-represented minorities and 3/10 are women. Of 26 awardees since 1993, 14 continue work on lung cancer, 6 continue cancer research and 2 continue other academic research;4/26 are minority and 10/26 are women.

Public Health Relevance

Recruitment and retention of young translational researchers in lung cancer is critical to making progress in reducing the morbidity and mortality of this disease. The Colorado Lung Cancer SPORE Career Development Program is committed to selecting and supporting the most promising individuals who will make future advances in lung cancer research.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Specialized Center (P50)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZCA1-RPRB-7 (J1))
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of Colorado Denver
United States
Zip Code
Patil, Tejas; Smith, Derek E; Bunn, Paul A et al. (2018) The Incidence of Brain Metastases in Stage IV ROS1-Rearranged Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer and Rate of Central Nervous System Progression on Crizotinib. J Thorac Oncol 13:1717-1726
Suda, Kenichi; Kim, Jihye; Murakami, Isao et al. (2018) Innate Genetic Evolution of Lung Cancers and Spatial Heterogeneity: Analysis of Treatment-Naïve Lesions. J Thorac Oncol 13:1496-1507
Helfrich, Barbara A; Gao, Dexiang; Bunn Jr, Paul A (2018) Eribulin inhibits the growth of small cell lung cancer cell lines alone and with radiotherapy. Lung Cancer 118:148-154
Kleczko, Emily K; Heasley, Lynn E (2018) Mechanisms of rapid cancer cell reprogramming initiated by targeted receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors and inherent therapeutic vulnerabilities. Mol Cancer 17:60
McCoach, Caroline E; Le, Anh T; Gowan, Katherine et al. (2018) Resistance Mechanisms to Targeted Therapies in ROS1+ and ALK+ Non-small Cell Lung Cancer. Clin Cancer Res 24:3334-3347
Drilon, Alexander; Laetsch, Theodore W; Kummar, Shivaani et al. (2018) Efficacy of Larotrectinib in TRK Fusion-Positive Cancers in Adults and Children. N Engl J Med 378:731-739
Pilling, Amanda B; Kim, Jihye; Estrada-Bernal, Adriana et al. (2018) ALK is a critical regulator of the MYC-signaling axis in ALK positive lung cancer. Oncotarget 9:8823-8835
Kwak, Jeff W; Laskowski, Jennifer; Li, Howard Y et al. (2018) Complement Activation via a C3a Receptor Pathway Alters CD4+ T Lymphocytes and Mediates Lung Cancer Progression. Cancer Res 78:143-156
Sakamoto, Mandy R; Honce, Justin M; Lindquist, Deborah L et al. (2018) Lorlatinib Salvages CNS Relapse in an ALK-Positive Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer Patient Previously Treated With Crizotinib and High-Dose Brigatinib. Clin Lung Cancer :
McCoach, Caroline E; Blakely, Collin M; Banks, Kimberly C et al. (2018) Clinical Utility of Cell-Free DNA for the Detection of ALK Fusions and Genomic Mechanisms of ALK Inhibitor Resistance in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer. Clin Cancer Res 24:2758-2770

Showing the most recent 10 out of 435 publications