OF P20 APPLICATION Our University of Houston College of Pharmacy (UHCOP)-Dan L. Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center (DLDCCC) alliance will develop the infrastructure for a joint drug discovery/development research program to treat cancers with a health disparity and a joint Cancer Research Education Program (CREP). This alliance is built on complementary expertise in cutting-edge cancer drug discovery technologies at DLDCCC/Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) and in development of cancer drugs at UHCOP. The UHCOP is a constituent of the University of Houston (UH), which is an institution serving underserved health disparity populations (ISUPS). UHCOP faculty members bring a unique perspective from an ISUPS, which is complemented by a wealth of pharmaceutical discovery and development experience, existing programs for undergraduate research, and clinical expertise in working with underserved communities. The DLDCCC, an NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center, contributes prominent experience and perspective in current cancer treatments and clinical trials, cutting edge drug discovery technologies and expertise, cancer research core facilities, and existing undergraduate and graduate training and education programs, including those for patients with cancer health disparities. UHCOP and BCM are member institutions of the Texas Medical Center, the largest medical center in the world. The UHCOP/DLDCCC alliance will be led by an Administrative Core, comprised of senior and experienced investigators in drug discovery/development and cancer biology research. The Internal Advisory Committee (IAC), composed of experienced and senior cancer research and/or education experts, will guide the alliance to ensure the successful completion of the proposed goals. The Administrative Core and IAC will serve as mentors to Co-Leaders of pilot projects, the CREP, and participating early-stage investigators and underrepresented (UR) trainees. We have selected two co-developed and collaborative Pilot Projects, from a total of six, to demonstrate the feasibility of the joint infrastructure for drug discovery/development research investigating cancers with health disparities. These pilot projects have strong potential to launch bi-institutional, NIH-funded cancer drug discovery/development programs and create state-of-the-art cancer research training opportunities. We have co-developed a synergistic CREP that will encourage and prepare UR trainees to enter careers in cancer research. Through research experiences, cancer-specific curricula, and education outreach efforts to the UR trainees, the CREP will provide a platform for long-term sustained efforts for enlarging the pipeline of UR trainees in cancer research. The ultimate goal of the UHCOP-DLDCCC alliance will be to support a multiplier effect by developing joint infrastructure in drug discovery/development, education, and novel cancer technologies to target the unmet need of tackling cancer health disparities and generate preliminary data for successful subsequent NCI R-type grant funding.
(OVERALL) Our collaborative P20 proposal from the University of Houston College of Pharmacy (UHCOP) and the Dan L. Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center (DLDCCC) at Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) will develop an interdependent infrastructure for a long-term drug discovery/development research program and a cancer research education program (CREP) to address cancers displaying health disparities and to produce preliminary data for subsequent NCI R-type grant opportunities. The alliance will be led by the Administrative Core and an Internal Advisory Committee comprised of senior and experienced investigators, administrators, and/or educators in drug discovery, drug development, and cancer research at UHCOP and DLDCCC/BCM. We have selected two state-of-the-art Pilot Projects that have the strong potential to launch bi-institutional, multi-disciplinary large-scale drug discovery/development research programs in cancers exhibiting health disparities; in parallel, the CREP is co-developed to encourage and prepare underrepresented undergraduate and graduate students to enter careers in cancer research.