University of Vermont

The University of Vermont Cancer Center


The University of Vermont Cancer Center Program Grant Award

The University of Vermont Cancer Center provides an environment, research facilities, and infrastructure to support the initiation of partnerships for early stage and established cancer center members throughout the College of Medicine, The University of Vermont Medical Center and the University of Vermont to pursue translational cancer programs. The University of Vermont Cancer Center Program Grant provides for $20,000, one-year awards that may be supported by matching funds from another source. Projects must demonstrate effectiveness of the scientists, behaviorists and physician investigator partnerships to collaboratively pursue translational investigation. These projects will translate discoveries from laboratory based, behavioral and population health science investigation to cancer prevention, early detection, treatment, and survivorship efforts.

Current Recipients

GATA3 binding profiles in archival breast tumors: ChIP-Seq method refinement and validity assessment in support of an R01 application.
Co-Principal Investigators: Tom Ahern, PhD, MPH, Donald Weaver, MD, and Jonathon Gordon, PHD.
This project brings together a transdisciplinary team of VCC investigators with expertise in epidemiology, biochemistry, and breast cancer and aims to develop a molecular test for risk of late cancer recurrence. The test will evaluate binding of regulatory proteins to genes that might affect cancer development and dormancy. Findings from this project could address a pressing need in the cancer survivor population—establishing risk for recurrence

Generation of iPSCs from Leukemic Patients: Understanding the Molecular Mechanisms that Trigger and Sustain Leukemia
Principal Investigator: Kaleem Zaidi, PhD
Co-Principal Investigators: Rodrigo Grandy, PhD, Jeffrey Spees, PhD, and Chris Holmes, MD, PhD
Through a Coupling of expertise in the basic science of stem cell biology, induced Pluripotent Stem Cell (iPSC) generation, and leukemia and hematologic disorders, this innovative project will develop iPSCs from patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), the most common acute leukemia affecting adults. The objective is to establish models that will allow investigators to study the mechanisms that contribute to leukemia initiation and progression. A long-term goal is to generate AML-specific-iPSC lines that enable development of and evaluation of new therapies as well as assess drug responsiveness in a patient-specific way.

A Serum microRNA Biomarker Signature for Prostate Cancer Progression
Co-Principal Investigators: Jane Lian, PhD, Scott Perrapato, DO, and Steve Ades, MD
The goal of this interdisciplinary project is to find a signature of micro-NAs (miRNAs, small, non-coding RNAs that play key roles in the regulation of genes) that will provide biomarkers for assessing prostate cancer progression. Novel molecular targets for clinical intervention will be established. By understanding what the miRNAs are and what they do the team hopes to better predict prognosis and response to treatments for prostate cancer patients.

Papillary Microcarcinoma of the Thyroid: An Investigation of Molecular Pathogenesis
Co-Principal Investigators: Nikoletta Sidiropoulos, MD and Fran Carr, PhD
Through partnerships between scientists with complementary expertise in thyroid cancer treatment and molecular biology of thyroid cancer, this study team hopes to unravel the biology of Papillary Microcarcinoma (PMC), a tumor responsible for 50% of all thyroid cancers. By studying the DNA changes in these tumors they hope to elucidate how an individual PMC will behave over time. The ultimate goal of the research team is to translate these findings into clinical parameters that will increase capabilities to tailor therapeutic interventions.

Long Noncoding RNA Markers of Breast Cancer Risk of Recurrence
Co-Principal Investigators: Donald Weaver, MD, Brian Sprague, PhD, Mark Evans, PhD, Jonathan Gordon, PhD, Janet Stein, PhD
This study will examine a new class of molecular markers called long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), which are important in normal and tumor cell function. The research team will investigate contributions of lncRNAs to regulation of gene expression. They will study the best method for investigating lncRNAs in patients and will then screen a set of breast cancers (previously shown as at low or high risk for recurrence) for lncRNAs expression. LncRNAs associated with risk for disease recurrence will be investigated to identify novel markers for clinical decision making.

Last modified December 02 2014 03:22 PM