The National Cancer Institute has awarded a five-year, $11.3 million grant to a team of researchers at Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center—Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute to continue their thyroid cancer research. The new grant will allow the continuation of the “Genetic and Signaling Pathways in Epithelial Thyroid Cancer” study, which begain in 2008.
The principal investigator of the project and grant (http://1.usa.gov/1ghUn8u), Matthew D. Ringel, MD, Professor of Medicine and a member of the OSUCCC-James Molecular Biology and Cancer Genetics (MBCG) Program, explained that the goal of the research is to identify new genes and pathways that influence cancer development, progression, and response to therapy, to improve individualized approaches to early diagnosis and treatment.
The initial research has identified genes that predispose to thyroid cancer, as well as interactions between PI3 kinase and other signaling pathways that result in follicular cancer development—and that p21 activated kinases are regulators of thyroid cancer invasion, he said via email.
“Together they have set the stage for the second cycle, which will focus on extending these observations in mechanistic directions with translational intent.”
The study's four integrated projects are:
- “Genes in the Predisposition to Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma,” led by Albert de la Chapelle, MD, PhD, Co-leader of the OSUCCC-James MBCG Program;
- “Genetic Alterations that Initiate Follicular Thyroid Carcinogenesis,” led by Charis Eng, MD, PhD, at the Cleveland Clinic, and co-led by Lawrence Kirschner, MD, PhD, of the OSUCCC-James MBCG Program;
- “Selective Modulation of Thyroidal Radioiodine Accumulation,” led by Sissy Jhiang, PhD, of the OSUCCC-James MBCG Program; and
- “P21-Activated Kinase in Thyroid Cancer” led by Ringel, who is also a member of the OSUCCC—James MBCG Program and Director of the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism at Ohio State.
The grant additionally funds these three shared-resource cores:
- “Integrated Clinical Information and Pathology Sample Repository,” led by John Phay, MD, of Ohio State's Division of Surgical Oncology, and Rebecca Nagy, CGC, of Ohio State's Division of Human Genetics;
- “Mouse Imaging and Pathology,” led by Kirschner; and
- “Biostatistics and Data Integration,” led by Soledad Fernandez, PhD, of Ohio State's Department of Biomedical Informatics.