The mission of the MSCP SPORE Career Development Program (CDP) is to stimulate basic, translational, and clinical research by recruiting and supporting new investigators in the area of melanoma and other skin cancers. The CDP provides financial resources for this mission, while the SPORE itself provides a supportive and stimulating research environment. In the previous MSCP SPORE grant period, we supported 7 CDP awardees, all but one of whom were early-stage investigators (one Research Associate, one Research Instructor, and four Assistant or Research Assistant Professors);5 of our 7 CDP awardees were women. All CDP Awardees have experienced success in advancing their careers, publishing their work, and obtaining extramural funding. We will continue to solicit proposals twice per year and to use a peer-reviewed scoring system to prioritize proposals for funding. The CDP Co-Directors, Executive Committee, and Internal and External Advisory Board members participate in the review process, together with the Patient Advocates and additional experts who may be called upon if special reviewer expertise is necessary. The CDP will track progress of the successful applications and provide advisors to funded investigators to ensure that they obtain any needed services from the MSCP SPORE Cores (Administrative Core A;Biospecimen Core B;Biostatistics Core C;and Informatics Core D) and that they are integrated into the SPORE program. Awardees present their research results to the SPORE investigators after one year of support to be eligible for a second year of support. Progress toward translation as well as impact and innovation will determine whether CDP projects are found to merit promotion to full SPORE projects. Awardees will also be advised as appropriate in the preparation of grant applications for funding outside the SPORE mechanism and given access to Core resources to aid in this endeavor.
The MSCP SPORE will identify and support investigators new to research in melanoma and skin cancer with both pilot study funding and expertise and assistance in planning and preparing grant applications for independent funding.
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