Baylor College of Medicine

Dan L Duncan Cancer Center

Baylor awarded CPRIT grants for cancer research and prevention programs

Molly Chiu


Houston, TX -

Baylor College of Medicine has been awarded more than $21.8 million in grants by the Cancer Prevention & Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) to support new cancer research and programs, core facilities, recruitment of new faculty and community outreach.

CPRIT awarded 62 new grants to institutions across Texas, totaling more than $114 million to advance the fight against cancer, including 11 grants to Baylor College of Medicine. To date, CPRIT has awarded $2.6 billion in grants to Texas research institutions and organizations through its academic research, prevention and product development programs.

“CPRIT continues to play a major role in funding pivotal research in the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center at Baylor and other Texas institutions,” said Dr. C. Kent Osborne, professor and director of the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center. “CPRIT has been a great success in our state, and we are now seeing the fruits of the reinvestment of this program for another 10 years.”

Baylor received two grants as part of the Collaborative Action Program to Reduce Liver Cancer Mortality in Texas, a statewide initiative to reduce the rates of liver cancer, including the most common type, hepatocellular cancer. Dr. Fasiha Kanwal, professor of medicine and section chief of gastroenterology at Baylor, received $2.4 million for a project to reduce disparities in the risk of hepatocellular cancer. Dr. Aaron Thrift, assistant professor of medicine in gastroenterology, received $2.4 million to study genetic epidemiology of hepatocellular carcinoma in the Hispanic population.

“The current awards fund major research in liver cancer, which is the most rapidly rising cancer in incidence in South Texas,” Osborne said. “Funding will also support several new investigators to help get their research careers off to a successful start. The track record for past awards to new faculty like this showed that these awards paid great dividends.”

Additional awards to Baylor College of Medicine include:

Core Facility Support Awards

Dr. Rui Chen, professor of molecular and human genetics

Comprehensive Cancer Epigenomics Core Facility, $3,999,943

Early Clinical Investigator Awards

Dr. Premal Lulla, assistant professor of medicine in hematology and oncology at the Center for Cell and Gene Therapy

CPRIT Early Career Clinical Investigator Award, $1,500,000

High Impact High Risk Awards

Dr. Bingning Dong, assistant professor of molecular and cellular biology

Targeting Fatty Acid Synthesis in NAFLD Related HCC, $250,000

Individual Investigator Research Awards for Cancer in Children and Adolescents

Dr. Tsz-Kwong Man, associate professor of pediatrics in hematology and oncology

Targeting the CXCL10-CXCR3 Axis in Metastatic Osteosarcoma, $1,200,000

Expansion of Cancer Prevention Services to Rural and Medically Underserved Populations

Dr. Luis Rustveld, assistant professor of family and community medicine

Expanding Colorectal Cancer Prevention and Education Through Community-Based Outreach and Information Technology, $1,947,073

Recruitment of First-time Tenure-track Faculty Members — $8 million (Recruitment of faculty is currently underway.)

CPRIT launched in 2009 following a constitutional amendment to commit $3 billion in the fight against cancer over 10 years. In 2019, Texas voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment to provide an additional $3 billion to CPRIT for a total $6 billion investment in cancer research and prevention. Read more about the most recent round of CPRIT funding here.

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