UC San Diego, UC San Francisco Launch New Cancer Cell Mapping Initiative

Researchers from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and University of California, San Francisco, with support from a diverse team of collaborators, have launched an ambitious new project – dubbed the Cancer Cell Map Initiative or CCMI – to determine how all of the components of a cancer cell interact.

“We’re going to draw the complete wiring diagram of a cancer cell,” said Nevan Krogan, PhD, director of the UC San Francisco division of QB3, a life science research institute and accelerator, an investigator at Gladstone Institutes and co-director of CCMI with Trey Ideker, PhD, chief of medical genetics in the UC San Diego Department of Medicine and founder of the UC San Diego Center for Computational Biology & Bioinformatics. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom

 


Trey Ideker, PhD

Trey Ideker, PhD

Trey Ideker, PhD, is professor of bioengineering and professor of medicine in the Division of Medical Genetics. He was recently named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Dr. Ideker’s Laboratory Website

Training the Next Generation of Cancer Scientists

National Cancer Institute training grant has supported UC San Diego scholars since 1984

The University of California, San Diego received a $2.5 million Institutional Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award from the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), to support four predoctoral and six postdoctoral scholars in the campus’s cancer training program. First awarded in 1984, the grant is the single longest-running NCI training grant at UC San Diego. The 2014 grant renewal will provide funding through 2019, when it will have completed 34 years of training for cancer investigators…. Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom

More about the UC San Diego NIH/NCI Cancer Training Grant

$1 Million Gift from Joan and Irwin Jacobs Supports New Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy

A leadership gift of $1 million from San Diego philanthropists Joan and Irwin Jacobs will help UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center change how cancer is treated by supporting the Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy, a newly established center headed by Razelle Kurzrock, M.D. The UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center is one of just 41 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States, and the only one in the San Diego region. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Razelle KurzrockPhysician-scientist Razelle Kurzrock, MD, is Senior Deputy Director for Clinical Science at the Moores Cancer Center. There, she directs the Clinical Trials Office as well as the Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy.

Kurzrock is professor of medicine and vice chief of the Division of Hematology-Oncology at UC San Diego.

Dr. Pradipta Ghosh Receives Clinical Research Mentorship Grant from Doris Duke Charitable Foundation

Dr. Pradipta Ghosh

Three years ago, Department of Medicine physician-scientist Dr. Pradipta Ghosh received a Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Clinical Scientist Development Award to support her in the transition from junior researcher to independent investigator.

The grant funded her research for three fruitful years as she moved from assistant to associate professor and landed a five-year R01 research grant from the National Cancer Institute.

Now, Ghosh has won DDCF funding again — this time a Clinical Research Mentorship Grant to support her in mentoring medical student Gary Ma in the project, “Molecular Rheostats in Type II Diabetes – Novel Therapeutic Targets for Insulin Resistance.”

The DDCF Clinical Research Mentorship program is a competitive grant program that supports the development of a mentoring relationship between a clinical scientist previously funded through the foundation and a medical student with an interest in becoming a future clinician investigator.

This DDCF program funded 10 mentor/mentee teams this year.

About Dr. Ghosh

Pradipta Ghosh, MD, MBBS, is associate professor of medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology. She is a graduate of the UC San Diego Internal Medicine Residency Training Program, the Gastroenterology Fellowship Training Program and the Department of Medicine Physician-Scientist Training Program.

In her laboratory, Ghosh investigates the cell biology of signal transduction to find new ways to understand and block the development and spread of cancer and other diseases. Her National Cancer Institute research grant supports the project, “Modulation of G Proteins by Growth Factors.”

Looking back at the development of her career, she cites two important mentors, Drs. Stuart Kornfeld and Marilyn Farquhar.

“Stuart Kornfeld and Marilyn Farquhar are spectacular examples of good mentors and what good mentoring involves,” she said. “Being accessible, empowering, ensuring the freedom to probe, to expand the horizon.”

Stuart Kornfeld, MD, is David C. and Betty Farrell Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Director of the Division of Hematology at Washington University in St. Louis, where he directs the Medical Scientist Training Program and co-directs the Physician-Scientist Training Program.

Marilyn Farquhar, PhD, is Distinguished Professor of Cellular and Molecular Medicine and Pathology at UC San Diego.

About Her Mentor/Mentee Research Project

Abstract of the Study, “Molecular Rheostats in Type II Diabetes – Novel Therapeutic Targets for Insulin Resistance.”

“The overall goal of the proposed research is to unravel the mechanisms by which [Gα-interacting, vesicle-associated protein] (GIV) maintains insulin sensitivity and how its phosphoinhibition generates Insulin resistance (IR). Insights gained will not only help determine whether GIV can serve as a therapeutic target and a marker for prognosticating response to therapy in patients with IR, but also help decipher, access, and manipulate the entire signaling network to restore physiologic insulin response.”

Potential New Way to Suppress Tumor Growth Discovered

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, with colleagues at the University of Rochester Medical Center, have identified a new mechanism that appears to suppress tumor growth, opening the possibility of developing a new class of anti-cancer drugs. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Willis X. Li

Dr. Willis X. Li

Senior author of the study report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences is Willis X. Li, PhD, professor of medicine in the Division of Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine and faculty member in the Biomedical Sciences graduate program.

Li’s UC San Diego Department of Medicine coauthors are postdoctoral fellow Pranabananda Dutta, PhD; pulmonary/critical care physician-scientist Jinghong Li, MD, PhD, and senior undergraduate student Jingtong Wang.

Coauthors Xiaoyu Hu, Amy Tsurumi and Hartmut Land are colleagues at the University of Rochester, where Li was a faculty member and researcher at the Wilmot Cancer Center before he joined the faculty at UC San Diego.

At the University of Rochester, LI received the 2008 Davey Memorial Award for Outstanding Cancer Research for his work in the cellular and molecular signaling in cancer development.

He is now principal investigator of an R01 research grant from the National Cancer Institute for the project, Epigenetic Tumor Induction by Heterochromatin Instability.

Citation for the study report:  

Xiaoyu Hu, Pranabananda Dutta, Amy Tsurumi, Jinghong Li, Jingtong Wang, Hartmut Land, and Willis X. Li. Unphosphorylated STAT5A stabilizes heterochromatin and suppresses tumor growth. PNAS 2013 ; published ahead of print June 3, 2013, doi:10.1073/pnas.1221243110  |  Abstract  |  Full text (PDF)

New Cancer Council Combines Local Centers’ Strengths

UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center, Salk Institute for Biological Studies and Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute come together in novel collaboration

San Diego is a powerhouse for cancer research, home to the University of California, San Diego Moores Cancer Center – the region’s only National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated comprehensive cancer center – and two NCI-designated centers for basic research: the Salk Institute Cancer Center and the Cancer Center at Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute.

These singular enterprises have now formed a novel collaboration – the San Diego National Cancer Institute Cancer Centers Council, or C3 – to leverage their distinct and combined resources and talents. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center

Dr. Scott Lippman Senior UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center leaders and Department of Medicine professors Scott Lippman, MD, and Barbara Parker, MD, are voting members of the new NCI Cancer Centers Council (C3).

Lippman is director and Chugai Pharmaceutical Chair, UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center and senior associate dean and assistant vice chancellor for Cancer Research and Care, UC San Diego.

Barbara A. Parker, MDParker is professor of clinical medicine, UCSD School of Medicine and deputy director for Clinical Affairs, UCSD Moores Cancer Center.

She received her internal medicine residency training, served as chief medical resident and did her hematology-oncology fellowship at UC San Diego.

Lippman is professor of medicine and Parker is professor of clinical medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology.

UCSD-based Cancer Consortium Receives 5-Year, $20 Million Grant Renewal

NCI funding continues work focused on chronic lymphocytic leukemia  

An international consortium of scientists studying chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), based at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, has been awarded a 5-year, $20 million grant by the National Cancer Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health. The grant is the second renewal of funding for a broad-based effort designed to better understand the pathology of CLL – the most common form of leukemia in the Western world – and develop new drugs and treatments. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Thomas KippsDr. Thomas Kipps heads the Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Research Consortium (CRC), the eight-member international body receiving the grant. Thomas Kipps, MD, PhD, is professor of medicine, Evelyn and Edwin Tasch Chair in Cancer Research, and director of the Clinical Trials Office and deputy director of research at UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center.

UC San Diego Cancer Researchers Target Link between Obesity and Breast Cancer Risk

July 28, 2011. A team of researchers from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center will be participating in a cooperative agreement initiative, funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) of the National Institutes of Health, with four other major cancer centers. The Transdisciplinary Research on Energetics and Cancer (TREC) initiative…. Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom

Dr. Jerrold Olefsky

Jerrold M. Olefsky, MD, is principal investigator of one of the four UC San Diego projects: Role of Inflammation and Insulin Resistance in Mouse Models of Breast Cancer. He is one of 22 researchers taking part in the UC San Diego TREC project. Dr. Olefsky is Distinguished Professor of Medicine in the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism and Associate Dean for Scientific Affairs, UC San Diego Health Sciences. | Read the UC San Diego TREC project abstract

UC San Diego Selected as Study Site for National Research Network

27 institutions looking for ways to boost immune system to fight cancer

The University of California, San Diego School of Medicine is among 27 research institutions selected across North America to be a part of the Cancer Immunotherapy Trials Network (CITN), funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The CITN will establish a network of top academic immunologists to conduct multicenter research on agents that boost patients’ own immune systems to fight their cancer. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom

Dr. Thomas Kipps, pictured above, is principal investigator of the UC San Diego CITN study site. Thomas J. Kipps, MD, PhD, is Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology and deputy director of the UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center. He holds the Evelyn and Edwin Tasch Chair in Cancer Research. Read more about the Cancer Immunotherapy Trials Network.