MD Anderson receives $55 million over five years in comprehensive cancer center status renewal

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center received a notice of renewal from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to extend its status as an NCI-designated comprehensive cancer center. The funding for the Cancer Center Support Grant (CCSG) provides a total of $55 million over five years.

MD Anderson was one of the first three cancer institutions to receive the designation and has been continually renewed since 1971. The NCI funding supports 16 research programs, 14 shared resource services (cores) and four developing cores at MD Anderson. All of MD Anderson’s research programs and shared-resource services were rated as high impact, with 11 of the 16 research programs and 11 of the 14 cores rated in the top two categories – Exceptional or Outstanding to Exceptional.

“This prestigious federal funding program has been vital to MD Anderson’s game-changing research efforts,” said MD Anderson President Peter WT Pisters, M.D. “Our comprehensive cancer center status acknowledges and supports the institution’s leadership role in cancer prevention, education, research and patient care. We are indeed thankful to the NCI for this continued recognition and support.”

In its renewal notice, the NCI cited MD Anderson for being “highly successful in generating paradigm shifting and practice-changing discoveries, and in translating scientific findings to the clinic.” The agency also stated that MD Anderson “has achieved an impressive set of scientific accomplishments with impactful, transdisciplinary and translational research that addresses the cancer burden” and is “clearly poised to continue to make significant contributions to cancer research, prevention, detection and treatment in the future.”

According to the agency, NCI-designated comprehensive cancer centers are characterized by scientific excellence and the capability to integrate a diversity of research approaches to focus on the problem of cancer. These centers play a vital role in advancing NCI’s goal of reducing morbidity and mortality from cancer. There are currently 51 NCI-designated comprehensive cancer centers.

Pisters serves as principal investigator for the CCSG award, which is managed by MD Anderson’s Translational Research Office under the leadership of Robert Bast, M.D., vice president for Translational Research. Alan McClelland, Ph.D., associate vice president for Programs, Infrastructure and Planning provides oversight for the grant, while the cores are overseen by Katherine Hale, Ph.D., director, Institutional Shared Resources.

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