This K24 award is being sought to support the efforts of the principal investigator, Dr. James Goydos, as he builds his clinical and translational research program. He is the Director of the Melanoma and Soft Tissue Oncology Program at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and The Cancer Institute of New Jersey. He is the sole funded clinical researcher in the Department of Surgery at our Institution and he carries a large clinical burden in support of our large Melanoma Program. A K24 award will allow our Institution to hire a new junior Surgical Oncologist to join Dr. Goydos'program to relieve much of his clinical duties so that he can concentrate on Patient Oriented Research and mentoring our junior faculty. Dr. Goydos has a robust clinical research program that is translating the findings in our basic science laboratories into clinical practice. He has just completed accrual to a phase 0 trial of the glutamate signaling pathway inhibiting compound Riluzole in patients with resectable stage III and IV melanoma and the results are very encouraging. Dr. Goydos plans to expand this research with a phase II trial of Riluzole in patients with stage IV melanoma and he is planning future trials with combination therapies and in the adjuvant setting. Dr. Goydos will be supporting his research with an ongoing R21 Quick Trial that supports the phase II trial. He is also developing a R01 level clinical project that will be part of a P01 application that is scheduled for submission in the Winter of 2009. Dr. Goydos currently acts as the primary mentor for one junior faculty member in the Division of Surgical Oncology (Dr. Jonathan Lee) and will be taking on three other junior faculty members as mentees if he obtains this award. He will also be involved in developing a clinical and translational research curriculum for the Department of Surgery.

Public Health Relevance

There are not enough Surgeons trained in art and science of patient oriented research so we must encourage those Surgeons with the skills need to mentor the next generation of Surgical Researchers to apply the time and resources needed for this endeavor. To do this we must free Reseachers from the day to day clinical duties that take up so much of our time This award will help us accomplish these goals.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Midcareer Investigator Award in Patient-Oriented Research (K24)
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Study Section
Subcommittee G - Education (NCI)
Program Officer
Lim, Susan E
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Rbhs -Cancer Institute of New Jersey
New Brunswick
United States
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Mehnert, Janice M; Silk, Ann W; Lee, J H et al. (2018) A phase II trial of riluzole, an antagonist of metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 (GRM1) signaling, in patients with advanced melanoma. Pigment Cell Melanoma Res 31:534-540
Rosenberg, Stephen A; Niglio, Scot A; Salehomoum, Negar et al. (2015) Targeting Glutamatergic Signaling and the PI3 Kinase Pathway to Halt Melanoma Progression. Transl Oncol 8:1-9
Khan, Atif J; Wall, Brian; Ahlawat, Stuti et al. (2011) Riluzole enhances ionizing radiation-induced cytotoxicity in human melanoma cells that ectopically express metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 in vitro and in vivo. Clin Cancer Res 17:1807-14
Lee, Hwa Jin; Wall, Brian A; Wangari-Talbot, Janet et al. (2011) Glutamatergic pathway targeting in melanoma: single-agent and combinatorial therapies. Clin Cancer Res 17:7080-92
Shin, Seung-Shick; Wall, Brian A; Goydos, James S et al. (2010) AKT2 is a downstream target of metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 (Grm1). Pigment Cell Melanoma Res 23:103-11