The Career Development Research Program (CDP) of the University of Texas SPORE in Lung Cancer is an integral part of the overall Lung Cancer SPORE research. This Program provides, after selection by external review and applicant discussion with senior SPORE investigators, a flexible and nimble platform for seed funding to stimulate the careers of young investigators in lung cancer translational research. It is designed to fund promising young investigators that address important translational objectives in early detection, prevention, and therapy of lung cancer. Through institutional commitments at both UTSW and UTMDACC there are $300,000 in funds (that can be used for CDP or DRP Projects) matched to the $50,000 provided by the grant for the CDP. The CDP program has evolved into a highly structured process for solicitation, evaluation and mentorship, to attract new investigators to lung cancer translational research who have novel approaches and techniques that address significant barriers in lung cancer and who could benefit from SPORE Core Resources, interaction and mentorship, and that have potential to synergize with our existing Projects. The CDP has resulted in a large number of publications, new lung cancer translational scientists, and new peer reviewed grants.
The Specific Aims of this competing renewal Lung Cancer SPORE CDP application are to build on the current and past exemplary SPORE progress of training the next generation of lung cancer leaders to fuel discovery and innovation. They are summarized as follows: 1. To enhance the translational lung cancer research capability at UTSW and MDACC via recruitment of highly innovative and talented entry-level and junior scientists;2. To attract candidates with prior experience in cancer at other disease sites who want to acquire expertise in Lung cancer translational research;3. To transition CDP awardees from mentored to successful independent lung cancer translational research scientists;4. To promote the development of clinical oncologists and basic scientists who can rapidly translate basic observations in cell and molecular biology/genetics into clinically applicable utility. We are particularly interested in recruiting applied and basic clinicians, scientists, and physician-scientist candidates who: 1. Have the potential to bring new and innovative ideas and approaches to lung cancer research. 2. Are trained in biomedical concepts and technologies, data gathering, evaluation and interpretation. 3. Are expert or can be trained to use new approaches and techniques to detect and resolve weaknesses and gaps in our understanding of lung cancer biology, pathogenesis, and treatment.
Over the last 20 years, the 5-year survival rate for lung cancer has improved only by 2%, from 13 percent to 15 percent. That statistics alone is an urgent call for accelerated translational lung cancer research. The primary objective of the University of Texas Lung Cancer SPORE CDP is to provide a source of seed funding to stimulate the careers and mentor young lung cancer translational investigators to be the next generation of researchers.
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