The Purdue University Center for Cancer Research (PCCR) was established as an NCI basic science cancer center in 1978. As such, the PCCR's mission focuses on basic discovery - discovery that is the foundation through which the PCCR fosters innovative cancer solutions. Notably, the PCCR not only supports basic discovery but also facilitates discovery application and, where possible, positions discoveries for transfer to the public domain. Purdue strengths in engineering, veterinary medicine, nutrition science, chemistry, medicinal chemistry, pharmacy, structural biology, and biological sciences, form the core foundation upon which the PCCR facilitates discovery centered on understanding the biology of the cancer cell, developing innovative technology to probe cancer-related phenomena, creating diagnostic and imaging tools, and synthesizing unique therapeutic chemical entities that can be delivered to the cancer cell by novel technology. To facilitate the mission of discovery, the PCCR has established a transdisciplinary environment that focuses PCCR core strengths on providing novel solutions to cancer problems. As a matrix center, PCCR leadership draws on core capabilities through its 97 members from 18 academic departments and 6 colleges across Purdue, to organize an infrastructure based on four Research Programs: Chemical and Structural Biology (CSB), Cell Identity and Signaling (CIS), Medicinal Chemistry (MC), and Drug Delivery and Molecular Sensing (DDMS). The PCCR expedites discovery through management of 7 Shared Resources (Flow Cytometry and Cell Separation (FC-SR), DNA Sequencing (SEQ-SR), Macromolecular Crystallography (MM-SR), Mass Spectrometry (MS-SR), Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR-SR), Biological Evaluation (BE-SR) and Transgenic Mouse (TMCF-SR)) which provide researchers access to state-of-the-art expertise to analyze cells, nucleic acids and proteins, to determine detailed molecular structures that can be used to design drugs, to evaluate targets/drugs in vivo, and to develop new animal models of cancer. The PCCR fosters a remarkable breadth of cancer research spanning clinical evaluations of dogs with spontaneous malignancies as an evaluative process in drug development and validation of targets and technologies, to probing the fundamentals of molecular motion through interferometry and determining its application for innovative cancer solutions, and the application of the pioneering technology that is based on ionizing molecules in ambient conditions for mass spectrometry analysis to identify cancer markers and which opened doors for additional technological assessments and mechanistic biological studies. Finally, the PCCR maintains the Essential Characteristics for a Cancer Center including exceptional Physical Space, effective Organizational Capabilities that provide the foundation for innovative cancer research, a Transdisciplinary Collaborative environment that facilitates fundamental discovery with a Cancer Focus, exceptional Institutional Commitment to expand and enhance cancer research at Purdue, and outstanding Center Director leadership that drives the development of cancer solutions.

Public Health Relevance

Overall Component: Project Narrative As a basic science cancer center, the PCCR, through its fundamental research effort, serves its state, country and the world through innovative discovery and its application to cancer solutions. Through drug discovery, drug delivery, imaging technology and biomarker discovery, the PCCR applies innovative solutions to major cancer problems.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZCA1)
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Ptak, Krzysztof
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Purdue University
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West Lafayette
United States
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