This is a Midcareer Investigator Award in Patient-Oriented Research (POR) application (K24) for Stuart R. Lessin, M.D and will focus on cutaneous oncology. Dr. Lessin is Associate Professor and Co-Director of the Cutaneous Lymphoma Program in the Department of Dermatology at the University of Pennsylvania. He is highly committed to POR and has a well established track record (funding and publications) in the area of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL). He has developed techniques for the molecular diagnosis of lymphoproliferative skin diseases based on T-cell receptor (TCR) gene expression and translated them into new strategies of therapy utilizing the TCR as a target. Dr. Lessin is currently the principal investigator of a FDA funded Phase I clinical trial testing the safety and efficacy of genetic (DNA) vaccination of human TCR in patients with CTCL. The overall research goal of this proposal will be to develop and test novel therapeutic approaches to skin cancers utilizing the technologies of therapeutic DNA vaccines, peptide vaccines and peptidomimetics. Dr. Lessin has been heavily involved in the mentoring and training of trainees in POR at all levels - medical students, residents/fellows and junior faculty. This has been accomplished through a series of well established POR programs. Currently, Dr. Lessin serves as a mentor in the Department of Dermatology's Cutaneous Oncology Fellowship Program, NIH Training Grant (T32), Drug Study Unit, Derm 800 Research elective and Junior Faculty Mentor's Program. The University of Pennsylvania's commitment and ability to provide opportunities and facilities necessary for POR is extraordinary. A well established Core Curriculum in POR Training, a NIH sponsored General Clinical Research Center (GCRC) and outstanding interaction between basic and clinical investigators provides a unique and dynamic environment in which to conduct and train individuals in POR. Dr. Lessin will participate in the POR core curriculum and the GCRC. This award will provide a critical infrastructure for Dr. Lessin to pursue POR and to mentor other investigators in POR. A commitment of 50 percent effort will ensure the continued acquisition of funding and protected time for clinical testing of new therapies. Furthermore, it will enable Dr. Lessin to continue to participate in the ongoing departmental and institutional POR programs and serve as a role model and mentor for young investigators in POR at the University of Pennsylvania.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
Midcareer Investigator Award in Patient-Oriented Research (K24)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAR1-BHD-A (J1))
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Moshell, Alan N
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Fox Chase Cancer Center
United States
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Lessin, Stuart R; Duvic, Madeleine; Guitart, Joan et al. (2013) Topical chemotherapy in cutaneous T-cell lymphoma: positive results of a randomized, controlled, multicenter trial testing the efficacy and safety of a novel mechlorethamine, 0.02%, gel in mycosis fungoides. JAMA Dermatol 149:25-32
Manne, Sharon; Lessin, Stuart (2006) Prevalence and correlates of sun protection and skin self-examination practices among cutaneous malignant melanoma survivors. J Behav Med 29:419-34
Manne, Sharon; Fasanella, Nicole; Connors, Jennifer et al. (2004) Sun protection and skin surveillance practices among relatives of patients with malignant melanoma: prevalence and predictors. Prev Med 39:36-47
Edwards, R H; Ward, M R; Wu, H et al. (2004) Absence of BRAF mutations in UV-protected mucosal melanomas. J Med Genet 41:270-2
Wu, Hong; Barusevicius, Alan; Lessin, Stuart R (2004) Granuloma annulare with a mycosis fungoides-like distribution and palisaded granulomas of CD68-positive histiocytes. J Am Acad Dermatol 51:39-44
Wu, Hong; Smith, Mitchell; Millenson, Michael M et al. (2003) Contribution of flow cytometry in the diagnosis of cutaneous lymphoid lesions. J Invest Dermatol 121:1522-30
Weinberg, Jeffrey M; Kristal, Leonard; Chooback, Lillian et al. (2002) The clonal nature of pityriasis lichenoides. Arch Dermatol 138:1063-7
McGinnis, Karen S; Lessin, Stuart R; Elder, David E et al. (2002) Pathology review of cases presenting to a multidisciplinary pigmented lesion clinic. Arch Dermatol 138:617-21
Berking, Carola; Takemoto, Richelle; Binder, Robert L et al. (2002) Photocarcinogenesis in human adult skin grafts. Carcinogenesis 23:181-7
Luo, V; Lessin, S R; Wilson, R B et al. (2001) Detection of clonal T-cell receptor gamma gene rearrangements using fluorescent-based PCR and automated high-resolution capillary electrophoresis. Mol Diagn 6:169-79

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