Our aim is to train young scientists to design and conduct research on significant problems in cancer by combining information and approaches from different scientific disciplines, including basic cellular and molecular biology, epidemiology clinical trials and studies, and behavioral-social sciences. The rationale behind this program is to produce researchers who can excel in the increasingly complex and specialized environments required for future cancer research. The IDTG is a highly competitive and demanding training program. Trainees work closely with two mentors who provide distinct, complementary areas of expertise (for example, by studying basic molecular and cellular mechanisms of neoplasia in combination with epidemiological analyses of related risk factors;or by participating in clinical research studies while studying behavioral or environmental factors that influence therapeutic outcomes). Our trainee projects transcend the traditional boundaries separating the molecular and cellular, clinical, epidemiologic and social cancer sciences. As a result, the IDTG and Program differ fundamentally in focus, goals and training plans from other pre- and post-Doctoral training programs in the Seattle biomedical research community. The Interdisciplinary Training Grant in Cancer Research supports two separate types of interdisciplinary trainees. The first are dual-mentor PhD candidates and postdoctoral fellows, who work within two separate research groups to study a common problem in cancer using unique, and yet complementary research disciplines. The second are graduate students who are enrolled in a dual-degree program that allows Ph.D. students in the Molecular and Cellular Biology (MCB) graduate program to earn a concurrent Masters of Science degree in Epidemiology. Trainees in either type of track are supported by this training grant as part of a broad initiative in Seattle to create a scientific culture where interdisciplinary cancer research and training is encouraged and fostered. Three separate institutions (The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, the University of Washington, and the Institute for Systems Biology) have served as research sites for IDTG trainees and their mentors. The IDTG faculty mentors each have primary appointments at one of those three institutions, and the majority have additional cross-institutional affiliate appointments within the UW graduate school and/or in the Seattle Cancer Consortium. We have created an environment across all these institutions where graduate students and postdoctoral fellows can become conversant in the goals, assumptions, logic, methods, and vocabulary of multiple research disciplines.

Public Health Relevance

The IDTG is focused specifically on training graduate students and post-doctoral fellows in two or more cancer- related disciplines. It specifically supports the training of 'dual-mentored'graduate students and postdocs, who work on a research problem in cancer with two mentors who collaboratively supervise and direct complementary approaches to studying that problem, using tools and approaches from two separate research disciplines. The IDTG also supports training for students who are enrolled in a dual-degree program in Seattle that leads to a Masters degree in epidemiology ('MS Epi') and a PhD in Molecular and Cellular Biology (MCB). Over the past ten years, the IDTG has provided support for 54 past trainees and 9 current trainees. Almost all of the past trainees are still working in cancer-related research and/or patient care: 10% as academic faculty, another 25% as staff scientists, 25% in biotechnology and industry, and the remainder either as cancer physicians or as continuing graduate or postdoctoral fellows.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Subcommittee G - Education (NCI)
Program Officer
Lim, Susan E
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of Washington
Schools of Medicine
United States
Zip Code
Bender Ignacio, Rachel A; Madison, Amy T; Moshiri, Ata et al. (2018) A Population-based Study of Perinatal Infection Risk in Women with and without Systemic Lupus Erythematosus and their Infants. Paediatr Perinat Epidemiol 32:81-89
Ferreccio, Amy; Mathieu, Julie; Detraux, Damien et al. (2018) Inducible CRISPR genome editing platform in naive human embryonic stem cells reveals JARID2 function in self-renewal. Cell Cycle 17:535-549
Gupta, Amitabha; Evans, Rena K; Koch, Lori B et al. (2018) Purification of kinetochores from the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Methods Cell Biol 144:349-370
Oseso, Linda N; Chiao, Elizabeth Y; Ignacio, Rachel A Bender (2018) Evaluating Antiretroviral Therapy Initiation in HIV-Associated Malignancy: Is There Enough Evidence to Inform Clinical Guidelines? J Natl Compr Canc Netw 16:927-932
Poudel, Kumud R; Roh-Johnson, Minna; Su, Allen et al. (2018) Competition between TIAM1 and Membranes Balances Endophilin A3 Activity in Cancer Metastasis. Dev Cell 45:738-752.e6
LlaurĂ³, Aida; Hayashi, Hanako; Bailey, Megan E et al. (2018) The kinetoplastid kinetochore protein KKT4 is an unconventional microtubule tip-coupling protein. J Cell Biol 217:3886-3900
Matreyek, Kenneth A; Starita, Lea M; Stephany, Jason J et al. (2018) Multiplex assessment of protein variant abundance by massively parallel sequencing. Nat Genet 50:874-882
Stewart, Mikaela D; Zelin, Elena; Dhall, Abhinav et al. (2018) BARD1 is necessary for ubiquitylation of nucleosomal histone H2A and for transcriptional regulation of estrogen metabolism genes. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 115:1316-1321
Suzuki, Aussie; Gupta, Amitabha; Long, Sarah K et al. (2018) A Kinesin-5, Cin8, Recruits Protein Phosphatase 1 to Kinetochores and Regulates Chromosome Segregation. Curr Biol 28:2697-2704.e3
Munson, Paul; Liu, Yi; Bratt, Debra et al. (2018) Therapeutic conserved elements (CE) DNA vaccine induces strong T-cell responses against highly conserved viral sequences during simian-human immunodeficiency virus infection. Hum Vaccin Immunother 14:1820-1831

Showing the most recent 10 out of 177 publications