Bridging the gap between the bench and the bedside, as announced in EurekAlert! the Mark Foundation for Cancer Research has awarded eight grants to promising early career scientists for projects aimed at addressing substantially unmet needs in cancer risk prediction, prevention, detection, and treatment. The Mark Foundation’s Emerging Leader Awards accelerate innovation by supporting potentially transformative yet high-risk scientific ideas that fall outside typical funding paradigms.
The current awardees are pursuing diverse aims in areas of basic, translational, and early clinical cancer research such as engineering the immune system in the human body to fight cancer, tackling glioblastoma multiforme (one of the deadliest cancers), targeting gene transcription in cancer, and predicting cancer susceptibility.
The recipients of The Mark Foundation’s inaugural Emerging Leader Awards are:
- Hannah K. Carter, PhD, University of California San Diego School of Medicine “Enabling MHC Genotype-Informed Risk Prediction, Cancer Prevention and Precision Immunotherapy”
- Yvonne Y. Chen, PhD, University of California, Los Angeles “Engineering TGF-β-resistant, Tri-Specific T-cell Therapy for Glioblastoma Multiforme”
- Eric S. Fischer, PhD, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute “Rational Approach to Targeting Transcription Factors with Small Molecule Degraders”
- Saar I. Gill, MD, PhD, The Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania “Optimizing Adoptive Cell Therapy for All Patients: Towards In Vivo CAR T-Cell Manufacturing”
- Cigall Kadoch, PhD, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute “Defining Transcription Factor-Chromatin-Remodeling Complex Interactions in Cancer: New Mechanisms and Therapeutic Opportunities”
- Andrew A. Lane, MD, PhD, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute “Origins and Therapeutic Vulnerabilities of Sex Bias in Cancer”
- Peter A. Sims, PhD, Columbia University Irving Medical Center “New Opportunities for Modeling Drug Response in Solid Tumors Afforded by Single-Cell Genomics”
- Matthias Stephan, MD, PhD, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center “Preventing Cancer Vaccine Failure via Nanoparticle-Mediated T-Cell Receptor Programming”
Who is the Mark Foundation for Cancer Research? Launched in 2017, it is dedicated to accelerating cures for cancer by integrating discoveries in biology with innovative technology. It funds a global portfolio of groundbreaking research carried out by individual investigators, multi-investigator teams and inter-institutional collaborations. It was established by Alex Knaster in memory of his father who died from cancer. It exists to bridge the gap between the bench and the bedside.