Request for Applications: Year 5 Pilot Projects
Physical Sciences-Oncology Centers
Center for Immunotherapeutic Transport Oncophysics (CITO)
2020 Request for Applications
Funding Opportunity Overview
The Center for Immunotherapeutic Transport Oncophysics (CITO) focuses on identifying and understanding the multi-scale transport properties of immune cells and molecules (systemically and within the tumor microenvironment) and other biophysical properties of the tumor microenvironment, in order to ultimately develop effective cancer immunotherapies. Two Research Projects, the Transport Oncophysics Core (TOC), and the Education and Outreach Unit (EOU) support the accomplishment of our goals within this central theme. Project 1 aims to determine the transport phenomena of dendritic cell (DC) vaccines for breast cancer and pancreatic cancer and post-vaccination changes in the transport of endogenous DCs, effector T cells, and macromolecular drugs. This information will be used to improve vaccines and immune responses in these two cancer models. Project 2 aims to determine the effects of multi-scale transport phenomena of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) on the distribution of immune cells and nutrients in the tumor microenvironment, during tumor progression. This Project also examines the role of immune checkpoint, phosphatidylserine (PS), in suppressing immune response in the tumor microenvironment of PDAC. The TOC supports both projects with modeling, computational, and imaging capabilities (e.g., PET, intravital) to integrate the scientific data into parameters that ultimately inform the rational design of optimal cancer immunotherapeutics, and to improve the immunogenicity of breast and pancreatic cancers, both of which are historically known to be lowly immunogenic. The EOU serves as the communication and engagement platform for students, trainees, junior faculty investigators, and researchers of the CITO, those of the Physical Sciences-Oncology Network, and the scientific and lay communities beyond.
In this Request for Applications (RFA), pilot research projects are being solicited in the area of transport oncophysics, in the context of cancer immunology and immunotherapy. Applications may address any particular challenge and must complement or synergize with the current CITO Projects. Pilot projects may also augment the ideas, scope, technologies, and capabilities of the CITO. Scientific discoveries will help to determine the factors that can be used to improve the immunogenicity of breast and pancreatic cancers and help to rationally design effective immunotherapies. These pilot projects are intended as additional mechanisms for members of the CITO to work together, to cultivate an environment that encourages innovation and collaboration. Therefore, pilot projects may also form the basis for additional collaborative projects across the CITO.
12 Noon CST, July 1, 2020
A successful application will be awarded up to $35,000 (direct costs) for up to one year. No cost sharing or matching is available or required. Once selected for funding, the pilot project’s lead investigator(s) must submit a progress report every three months to the CITO Administrative Core. The funded project investigators will continue participating in scientific exchange activities with fellow investigators within the CITO. Spending from allocated funds for each project will be monitored and approved by the Administrative Core. Continuation of funding is contingent upon completion of research objectives and programmatic prioritization.
Budget: up to $35,000 (direct costs)
Applications must be electronically submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org.