CANCER MOLECULAR IMAGING, NANOTECHNOLOGY, AND THERANOSTICS RESEARCH PROGRAM (CMINT) ABSTRACT The Cancer Molecular Imaging, Nanotechnology, and Theranostics Research Program (CMINT) boasts accomplished leaders with complementary expertise, Johannes Czernin, MD (Director), Caius Radu, MD (Co- Director), and Jeffrey Zink, PhD (Co-Director). The primary Program objective is to advance translational imaging, nanoparticle design and delivery, and theranostics with the goal of improving cancer patient outcomes by moving discoveries to preclinical and clinical applications. CMINT Program science is highly interactive and transdisciplinary, with its 45 faculty members drawn from four UCLA schools and partner institution, Caltech, representing 16 basic and clinical departments. Members have diverse and complementary expertise in biology, nuclear medicine, physics, nanotechnology, urology, radiology, radiation oncology, drug development, engineering, image reconstruction, chemistry, radiochemistry, and animal models of disease. The CMINT Program merges the former Cancer Molecular Imaging (CMI) Research Program with the evolution and organic development of the prior Cancer Nanotechnology (CN) Research Program, combined with a new emphasis on heavy particle therapy and imaging. As of March 1, 2019, the Program has $10,033,965 in direct cost funding, including $5.9M (59%) from the NCI, and $8.95M (89%) in total direct cost peer-reviewed funding. Program discoveries resulted in 1,109 publications over the prior project period, of which 23% are intra-programmatic collaborations and 29% are inter-programmatic collaborations. In addition, 49% of publications represent collaborations with external institutions and 35% are in high-impact (IF ?10, or field leading) journals. The Program contributed 14 patents, five approved INDs, and nine start-up companies. In the prior project period, there were 93 clinical trials initiated by Program members with 11,807 individuals accrued. CMINT has four specific aims to advance the primary Program objective and goal, including: (1) Developing instrumentation, analytical tools, and novel molecular imaging approaches; (2) Imaging immune responses and responses to immunotherapy; (3) Engineering nanotechnology-based imaging and therapeutic delivery systems; and (4) Translating diagnostic and theranostic approaches into the clinic. Embedded within these aims are studies to uncover and then target resistance mechanisms in peptide receptor radionuclide (PRRT) and radioligand (RLT) therapies, and to evaluate novel theranostic pairs with high translational potential. Additional studies include developing and translating new molecular imaging technologies and methodologies to improve the diagnosis and treatment of cancer, and using a spectrum of optical, radioactive [PET/SPECT], and MRI imaging and non- imaging approaches, such as mass-spectrometry, to extend the reach of molecular imaging and therapy. CMINT Program members continue to emphasize opportunities and lead in PET imaging while building strength in additional imaging modalities that include mpMRI, along with adding powerful concepts in nanoparticle agent delivery and theranostics to its core efforts.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Subcommittee I - Transistion to Independence (NCI)
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University of California Los Angeles
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