ABC² and the Florida Center for Brain Tumor Research Award $350,000 to Florida-Based Researchers

April 17, 2017

The Florida Center for Brain Tumor Research (FCBTR), in partnership with ABC2 (Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure), awarded $350,000 to support brain cancer research at the University of Florida and the Mayo Clinic. The awards support studies with a clear development path and potential to provide meaningful improvements in treatment outcomes for patients in the near future.

The awards fund research in areas on the cutting edge of scientific inquiry, including development of innovative adoptive cell, nanotechnology and immunologically-based therapies.  The award recipients will receive $87,500 for their projects.  The recipients are:

•        Loic Deleyrolle, PhD and Elias Sayour, MD, PhD, University of Florida:  Immune-targeting of slow-cycling malignant glioma cells via RNA nanoparticle vaccines
 
•        Catherine Flores, PhD, University of Florida:  Evaluating adoptive cell therapy against diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma
 
•        Betty Kim, MD, PhD, Mayo Clinic:  Engineering a bispecific nano-engager for targeted glioblastoma immunotherapy
 
•        Maryam Rahman, MD, MS University of Florida:  Novel immune response analysis algorithm to predict responders to immunotherapy
 
This year, the FCBTR/ABC2 Grants Program received applications from researchers at six Florida centers, including University of Florida, Mayo Clinic, University of Miami, University of South Florida, Scripps, and University of West Florida.

“The Florida legislature is to be congratulated, again, on establishing a program, the Florida Center for Brain Tumor Research, which continues to bring the world’s best brain tumor scientists to our state,” said Dr. William Friedman, Chairman of Neurosurgery at the University of Florida. “It has been an honor to collaborate with ABC2 on this important scientific endeavor for Florida.” 

"We appreciate the opportunity to partner with FCBTR to build a world-class brain cancer research network in Florida," said Max Wallace, CEO of ABC2. "Thanks to the fundraising support from patients, families and loved ones participating in ABC2’s Florida Brain Cancer 5k, we’re able to commit significant funding directly into research that holds the potential to speed the discovery of a cure." 

Since 2006, the FCBTR at the Evelyn F. and William L. McKnight Brain Institute of the University of Florida has worked with hospitals statewide to collect tissue and disseminate data on brain tumors, creating a powerful tool to facilitate clinical trials, funding opportunities and research collaborations. In addition to providing brain tumor tissue for research to Florida’s scientists, FCBTR recently hosted an international program on marrow-ablative chemotherapy and immunological therapies that brought world-renowned brain tumor scientists to Florida.  Since its founding in 2001, ABC2 has fueled advancement in the field by funding outstanding and novel translational research to world-renowned researchers and creating novel collaborations with the medical community and academia, industry and government.   Together, since 2010, FCBTR and ABC2 have together funded more than $1 million in Florida-based brain tumor research.

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About The Florida Center for Brain Tumor Research

The Florida Center for Brain Tumor Research is a collaborative effort and its Scientific Advisory Council includes top researchers from H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, Mayo Clinic, University of Florida, Cleveland Clinic Florida, Scripps Research Institute, UFHealth Cancer Center – Orlando Health, University of Miami and Tallahassee Neurological Clinic. FCBTR has sponsored statewide Brain Tumor Biomedical Technology Summits to encourage collaboration.

To learn more, please visit http://fcbtr.ufl.edu/

About ABC2 (Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure)

ABC² is a venture philanthropy nonprofit organization that drives cutting-edge research and treatments for brain tumors. Through strategic partnerships with medical research centers, early-stage biotechnology companies and large multi-national pharmaceutical companies ABC² has awarded more than 100 grants totaling over $20 million in brain tumor research funding to highly qualified investigators and physician-scientists from 54 institutions

To learn more, please visit http://www.abc2.org