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Vol. 2, No. 21                                                                                                            Oct. 16, 2019

Cancer Institute Member Spotlight

Marjan Boerma, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences
UAMS College of Pharmacy

The overall objective of Dr. Boerma's research is to elucidate biological mechanisms by which ionizing radiation causes injury in normal (non-cancerous) tissues and to identify countermeasures to intervene in these injuries. Read more>
What is NCI Designation?
Part VI: Are the 6 Essential Characteristics and Data Tables Enough for NCI Designation?
Continuing our series on NCI Designation, we left off talking about the six essential characteristics of an NCI-Designated Cancer Center, along with the data and metrics NCI wants to see in an application for designation. You may also hear this application referred to as a Cancer Center Support Grant or CCSG.

So, are the six essential characteristics and data tables enough to achieve designation? In short, no.

In its CCSG guidelines, NCI defines the basic infrastructure of an NCI-Designated Cancer Center. All of these elements must be described in detail in the application:
  • All cancer research must be aligned in a few distinct research programs; researchers must collaborate with one another in these programs and across programs, as evidenced by joint grant applications and publications.
  • Shared resources (i.e. cores) are established that facilitate the cancer research being conducted by cancer center members.
  • A clinical trials office manages all clinical cancer research on the campus.
  • Dedicated education programs provide training in cancer research from high school (or earlier) all the way through junior faculty level.
  • Community outreach and engagement (COE) efforts are infused into all aspects of the cancer center and inform decision making in multiple areas. 
  • Faculty and administrative leadership is in place to develop and oversee the center infrastructure.
The CCSG guidelines change every three years. This basic structure is rarely modified; however it was only three years ago that the research education and COE efforts were added to the guidelines. We are hopeful there won’t be such big changes with the next set of guidelines, but we will know soon. We expect the new guidelines by the end of 2019. Once released, you can read about in Breakthrough.
Research Collaboration Crosses
Basic Science, Clinical Boundaries
A research partnership between the UAMS Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute and the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville recently resulted in a five-year, $2.03 million R01 grant from the National Cancer Institute. Read more>
UAMS Breast Center Patients
Eligible to Participate in National
Mammography Research Study
TMIST (Tomosynthesis Mammographic Imaging Screening Trial) compares two standard breast cancer screening methods: tomosynthesis (3D) mammograms and digital (2D) mammograms. The study is designed to help researchers determine whether one method is better than the other at finding life-threatening breast cancers.
To find out if you qualify, contact the UAMS TMIST study coordinator at (501) 400-3195 or Read more>
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