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A Researcher's Guide to the Cancer Biology Program

By Sufi Thomas, PhD, co-leader, Cancer Biology research program
Two individuals listen to man in mask pointing to his research poster

November 22, 2022

The cancer center’s research programs – Cancer Biology, Cancer Prevention and Control and Drug Discovery, Delivery and Experimental Therapeutics - bring together investigators who share mutual interests and goals. We strive to provide our members with a culture that promotes the exchange of knowledge through collaboration.

I co-lead the Cancer Biology research program with esteemed researchers, Tomoo Iwakuma, MD, PhD, Linheng Li, PhD and Kristi Neufeld, PhD. Our program is made up of a diverse group of scientists who are committed to discovering the mechanisms that regulate cancer cell biology. Promising discoveries in the lab may someday lead to a better cancer treatment.

We work hard to ensure our members have the resources they need to conduct transformative research. Below are a few of the resources provided by our Cancer Biology program.

Annual Program Retreat

The Cancer Biology Program hosts an annual retreat for its faculty and trainees with representation from other cancer center research program members. The annual meeting has been a major event for members to enjoy networking and learning while developing collaborations. The meeting is held at a venue within driving distance from the University of Kansas (Lawrence) and the University of Kansas Medical Center campuses. 

The retreat features an external keynote speaker, meet-the-expert sessions, a presentation by members of PIVOT (the cancer center’s patient research advocacy group, poster session and trainee talks. Though rich in food for thought, the culinary highlights are also quite memorable.

Funding opportunities

We provide small grants to promote synergistic, interdisciplinary collaborations and foster translational research programs that elucidate the causes and progression of cancer and the development of therapies. Each research program provides funding opportunities to its members. 

Pilot awards & mini retreats

Cancer Biology Program provides several pilot awards including investigator-initiated grants, clinical and basic science grants to support publication of high-impact research papers. To foster multi-PI collaborations, we also fund mini retreats.

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