UVA Cancer Center Receives $15M Grant from NCI

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Emily Couric Clinical Cancer Center (FILE IMAGE) Emily Couric Clinical Cancer Center (FILE IMAGE)

A big grant will be used to help doctors at the University of Virginia develop new research and treatment for cancer.

The $15 million grant will support research, faculty recruitment, and clinical trials over the next five years as UVA strives to reach a higher level designation as a comprehensive cancer center.

“The key ingredient that UVA never really invested in is the entire area of population health - like cancer control, cancer prevention. So, we've been really focused on building and recruiting star faculty from all over the country to build that program,” said UVA Cancer Center Director Dr. Thomas Loughran.

The funding comes with the UVA Cancer Center's designation as a National Cancer Institute Cancer Center. The university is one of 69 facilities with this designation.

Over the years, the National Cancer Institute grant has jump-started research at UVA into new drugs to treat leukemia and immunotherapy for childhood cancer.

Release from the University of Virginia Health System:

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va., April 26, 2017 – University of Virginia Cancer Center has again been honored as one of just 69 National Cancer Institute-designated cancer centers for its work researching new and better cancer treatments.

“The NCI-designated cancer centers are recognized for their scientific leadership, resources, and the depth and breadth of their research in basic, clinical, and/or population science,” according to the NCI’s website. “The cancer centers develop and translate scientific knowledge from promising laboratory discoveries into new treatments for cancer patients.”

Renewal as an NCI-designated cancer center includes a five-year, $15 million grant to support research, recruitment of faculty, education and clinical trials. The previous five-year grant from NCI helped UVA recruit 10 new researchers as well as provide seed funding to launch new research projects that were then able to earn additional grant money from external sources.

UVA Cancer Center was re-designated by NCI after submitting a 1,200-page application highlighting its work over the past five years and its plans for the next five. NCI also conducted a daylong site visit where 20 reviewers from NCI and other cancer centers reviewed UVA’s work and plans.

In the coming years, the UVA Cancer Center team – which encompasses more than 180 researchers from 22 academic departments – will seek to expand its research enterprise. UVA’s goal is to become an NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center, which recognize cancer centers with a wider array of multidisciplinary research.

“The successful renewal is the result of the efforts of multiple teams working together. This is a tremendous testament to our ability to work collaboratively across multiple clinical, administrative and educational departments,” said Thomas P. Loughran Jr., MD, director of UVA Cancer Center. “It is an honor to lead such a vibrant and dynamic center, and we will continue to build the framework needed to achieve our vision of becoming a Comprehensive Cancer Center.”