The last several years have been a period of extraordinary scientific achievement and cancer research expansion, both at DFCI and within the Harvard medical school community. Although significant progress has been made in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer, this disease continues to represent a major cause of childhood and adult mortality. Important advances in our fundamental understanding of the immune response have suggested new clinical approaches to the diagnosis and treatment of leukemias and solid tumors. Significant advances have occurred in the areas of basic biological science, including tumor suppressor genes, cell cycle regulation, oncogene signaling, cell differentiation, apoptosis control, organogenesis and angiogenesis. Recent advances in targeted cancer therapies, new modalities of cancer cell imaging, and a deeper understanding of genetics and cancer risk highlight the potential of these discoveries to translational research which, in turn, has opened new areas of opportunity for today's young scientists. An essential part of this effort is the training of young scientists in basic and clinical immunology to become independent investigators in cancer immunology. At DFCI, translational research has been an ongoing collaborative effort between faculty in basic and clinical Immunology for many years. Collaboration is increasing between basic and clinical scientists to develop innovative approaches to disease prevention, since the formation of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center, a consortium of the affiliated hospitals, which has allowed expansion of our Program Faculty to include distinguished scientists from the entire Harvard Medical School community, all of whom are leading investigators in basic and translational/clinical immunology. Faculty have expanded their research into new areas, including gene silencing, molecular pathogenesis of viruses (a significant cause of cancer, especially in immune-deficient individuals) and tumor biology. In addition, expanded infrastructure and core resources have enhanced access to reagents and provide a more efficient framework in which to carry out research. The program will continue to be directed by Dr. Harvey Cantor who, in conjunction with the Training Program Subcommittee, is responsible for candidate selection, program curriculum, annual review of trainee's research and fostering of interactions among student and faculty members within the Program. The long-range goal of the Program is to train basic scientists to conduct independent high-quality research in cancer immunology.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Study Section
Subcommittee G - Education (NCI)
Program Officer
Damico, Mark W
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Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
United States
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