? Cancer Therapeutics Program (CTP) The overall goal of this 25-year-old Program at the Abramson Cancer Center (ACC) is to use mechanistic insights emerging from our basic science labs and CCSG Programs to improve cancer therapy for patients with advanced solid tumors. CTP accomplishes this goal through three Specific Aims: 1) Translate mechanistic biologic insights into Phase I trials; 2) Use data from Phase I trials to perform Phase II and Phase III trials to change clinical practice; and 3) Discover and develop innovative biomarkers that enhance safety and efficacy of cancer therapies. This Program is co-led by Program Leaders (PLs) Drs. Ravi Amaravadi and Naomi Haas, both appointed in 2013. Drs. Amaravadi and Haas are NCI-funded researchers who bring highly complementary scientific visions and a notable depth of experience as accomplished translational researchers. CTP encompasses a full range of basic, translational, and clinical research. CTP works closely with leaders of the ACC Community Outreach and Engagement (COE) to understand the cancer burden in the ACC catchment area and ensure that CTP research addresses the major unmet needs in our catchment area. CTP members work on improving cancer therapies for patients with advanced, lethal and often highly symptomatic solid tumors, including lung, prostate and pancreas cancer, as well as melanoma and others. During the current funding period, the PLs aggressively recruited new junior and senior investigators to CTP, reorganized the Program into disease-focused groups, and promoted intra-Programmatic interactions through carefully selected and relevant scientific themes including autophagy, cancer cell metabolism, targeted therapies, and immunotherapy. These efforts resulted in new multi-investigator grants, including NCI Program Project grants and SPORES that include CTP members, new leadership positions in National Groups, and an increase in collaborative publications. Interventional trial accruals were more than 640 per year on average (in CTP alone), representing an increase compared to the prior funding period; 59% of interventional accruals were on investigator-initiated trials. Major accomplishments include validating autophagy as a cancer target, translating basic findings in DNA damage to new therapies in ovarian and pancreatic cancer, determining the pharmacodynamics of PD-1 therapy in patients with earlier stage melanoma, testing novel immunotherapies such as monalizumab, CD40 mAb, and CAR T cells in patients with solid tumors, and advancing circulating DNA as a biomarker of response in lung cancer. The 31 CTP full members and 28 CTP associate members represent six departments from two schools at Penn. CTP members have $14.7M in annual cancer-related research grant funding (direct costs), of which $3.1M is NCI-funded and $4.5M is peer-reviewed. This represents an increase in total funding of $8M (120% increase) since 2015. Our Program has 16 R01- equivalents. There are 540 cancer-related publications from the Program since 2015. Of these, 19% are intra- Programmatic, 38% resulted from inter-Programmatic collaborations, and 74% are multi-institutional.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Center Core Grants (P30)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Subcommittee I - Transistion to Independence (NCI)
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of Pennsylvania
United States
Zip Code
Liu, Wei; Krump, Nathan A; MacDonald, Margo et al. (2018) Merkel Cell Polyomavirus Infection of Animal Dermal Fibroblasts. J Virol 92:
Schapira, Marilyn M; Barlow, William E; Conant, Emily F et al. (2018) Communication Practices of Mammography Facilities and Timely Follow-up of a Screening Mammogram with a BI-RADS 0 Assessment. Acad Radiol 25:1118-1127
Morrison, Alexander H; Byrne, Katelyn T; Vonderheide, Robert H (2018) Immunotherapy and Prevention of Pancreatic Cancer. Trends Cancer 4:418-428
Ojha, Rani; Leli, Nektaria M; Onorati, Angelique et al. (2018) ER translocation of the MAPK pathway drives therapy resistance in BRAF mutant melanoma. Cancer Discov :
Yan, Lesan; Amirshaghaghi, Ahmad; Huang, Dennis et al. (2018) Protoporphyrin IX (PpIX)-Coated Superparamagnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticle (SPION) Nanoclusters for Magnetic Resonance Imaging and Photodynamic Therapy. Adv Funct Mater 28:
Waxman, Adam J; Clasen, Suparna; Hwang, Wei-Ting et al. (2018) Carfilzomib-Associated Cardiovascular Adverse Events: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. JAMA Oncol 4:e174519
Han, Joseph; Lachance, Catherine; Ricketts, M Daniel et al. (2018) The scaffolding protein JADE1 physically links the acetyltransferase subunit HBO1 with its histone H3-H4 substrate. J Biol Chem 293:4498-4509
Reshef, Ran; Ganetsky, Alex; Acosta, Edward P et al. (2018) Extended CCR5 Blockade for Graft-versus-Host Disease Prophylaxis Improves Outcomes of Reduced-Intensity Unrelated Donor Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation: A Phase II Clinical Trial. Biol Blood Marrow Transplant :
Gangadhar, Tara C; Savitch, Samantha L; Yee, Stephanie S et al. (2018) Feasibility of monitoring advanced melanoma patients using cell-free DNA from plasma. Pigment Cell Melanoma Res 31:73-81
Rosenfeld, Aaron M; Meng, Wenzhao; Luning Prak, Eline T et al. (2018) ImmuneDB, a Novel Tool for the Analysis, Storage, and Dissemination of Immune Repertoire Sequencing Data. Front Immunol 9:2107

Showing the most recent 10 out of 1047 publications