NIH News Release
National Cancer Institute

Revised Thursday, October 7, 1999

Contact: NCI Press Office
(301) 496-6641

NCI Announces SPORE Grants for Ovarian Cancer Research

This release is a revision of a release issued on Oct. 6. The new release reflects revised first-year funding levels for the University of Alabama at Birmingham and for the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia.

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) has announced grants to four institutions for research on ovarian cancer. The research projects will focus on translating basic research findings into improvements in prevention, earlier detection, diagnosis, and treatments for this disease. First-year funding to the four institutions, effective Sept. 30, 1999, totals $5.85 million.

The four new projects are for a type of grant called a SPORE (Specialized Program of Research Excellence) that supports innovative, multidisciplinary translational research approaches that potentially may have an immediate impact on improving cancer care and prevention.

The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston will establish a program on chemoprevention, anti-angiogenesis, and novel treatments for ovarian cancer. Collaborative efforts will be established with other institutions, including The University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, the University of California at San Francisco, Northwestern University in Chicago, Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, and the University of Pittsburgh. First-year funding is $1.9 million.

The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center received funds to form the Pacific Ovarian Cancer Research Consortium to work with scientists from the University of Washington, Swedish Medical Center, Pacific Northwest Research Institute, the Marsha Rivkin Center for Ovarian Cancer Research (all in Seattle), and Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles on several ovarian cancer projects. These will include studies of genes for resistance to chemotherapy, studies to develop a nucleic acid vaccine for prevention, tools to estimate risk factors, statistical methods for selecting markers for individualized screening, and improved group counseling services for patients. First-year funding is $2.3 million.

The Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia received funds to develop an interdisciplinary ovarian cancer program focused on carcinogenesis, prevention and treatment of ovarian cancer. This SPORE project will develop an Ovarian Cancer Clinical Network linking that cancer center with the University of Pennsylvania, Hershey Medical Center, the Cancer Institute of New Jersey, and others. The project will also include tissue procurement, genetics testing for BRCA1 mutations, clinical testing of new treatments, as well as research on molecular pathways and biomarkers for ovarian cancer. First-year funding is $828,000.

The University of Alabama at Birmingham's SPORE program will focus on the development of new genetically engineered monoclonal antibody therapy, targeted immunotherapy, and research to find markers of disease progression that can be used as targets for chemoprevention. First-year funding is $828,000.

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