Cancer Biology (CB) The Cancer Biology (CB) Program brings together basic cancer biology and data science investigators to study and model?at the in vitro, in vivo, and in silico levels?the biology of malignant transformation and tumor progression. The main objective of CB is to foster basic discoveries of molecular and cellular mechanisms of cancer that are then used in other Hillman Cancer Center (HCC) programs to advance translational and clinical research. The program is led by Ronald Buckanovich, MD, PhD and Steffi Oesterreich, PhD. Buckanovich is Professor of Internal Medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology, and Oesterreich is Professor and Vice-Chair in the Department of Pharmacology and Chemical Biology. These two leaders have highly complementary expertise that they use to synergistically drive the thematic goals of the program. CB has three primary themes: (a) hormone response and signaling, (b) drug resistance and metastases, and (c) data science. CB has world-class investigators focused on these cancer-relevant thematic areas. All three areas are characterized by extensive collaborations within and across various other programs, and are significantly facilitated by the expertise and equipment available through HCC shared resources.
The aims of CB are to: (1) discover and elucidate cellular and molecular mechanisms of cancer initiation, progression and metastases, (2) transfer program discoveries to other HCC programs for application in the clinic in the form of novel preventive, diagnostic, or therapeutic approaches, (3) educate and mentor the next generation of cancer biologists, (4) accelerate research in areas of special importance in our catchment area, particularly through the work directed at the high incidence and mortality of breast and prostate cancers, and finally (5) facilitate collaborations within and outside CB via seminars, regular meetings, focused symposia, and a yearly retreat. CB has 43 members representing 17 academic departments and 5 schools within the University of Pittsburgh. CB members cancer-focused research is supported by $12.2M in total annual direct funding, of which $5.3M is NCI funding, $5.0M is other peer-reviewed and $1.9M is non-peer-reviewed. From 2015- August 2019, CB members published 834 cancer-related publications representing 14% intra-programmatic, 40% inter- programmatic, and 65% inter-institutional collaborations. HCC provides value to CB through the support of a significant number of shared resources, facilitating joint research activities weekly HCC seminar series, scientific retreats, and via financial support for novel collaborative efforts. HCC support and strategic vision planning allows recruitment of talented CB investigators. CB adds value to HCC through expertise in basic biology, data science, and modeling of disease. CB members also contribute to the HCC mission through mentoring of trainees, inter and intra-programmatic collaborations, and through the organization of scientific symposia and interdisciplinary retreats.

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National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Subcommittee I - Transistion to Independence (NCI)
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Low, Carissa A; Bovbjerg, Dana H; Ahrendt, Steven et al. (2018) Fitbit step counts during inpatient recovery from cancer surgery as a predictor of readmission. Ann Behav Med 52:88-92
Correa, Andres F; Toussi, Amir; Amin, Milon et al. (2018) Small Renal Masses in Close Proximity to the Collecting System and Renal Sinus Are Enriched for Malignancy and High Fuhrman Grade and Should Be Considered for Early Intervention. Clin Genitourin Cancer 16:e729-e733
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