Prostate Cancer SPORE

Prostate Cancer SPORE

In the 2018 Prostate SPORE renewal proposal from the University of Michigan (U-M), Karmanos Cancer Institute joined forces with U-M to propose a “Michigan Prostate SPORE” leveraging our institutions’ respective areas of strength. Karmanos has a non-overlapping patient population as U-M that includes an underserved population. The Michigan Prostate SPORE supports an interactive group of basic and clinical investigators in a translational research program that has led to major discoveries in the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of PCa.

The current Michigan SPORE consists of three projects:

  • Project 1: Targeting mCRPC Patients with Biallelic Loss of CDK12
  • Project 2: Integrating a Novel MiPS-Based Next- Generation Sequencing Urine Assay for the Early Detection of Unfavorable Risk PCa
  • Project 3: Exploring Ablation of the Androgen Receptor as a Therapeutic Approach for mCRPC

Principal Investigators

Arul Chinnaiyan, M.D., Ph.D.
S.P. Hicks Endowed Professor of Pathology
Director, Michigan Center for Translational Pathology
Professor, Department of Pathology and Urology
Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
University of Michigan Rogel Cancer Center
1500 E. Medical Center Drive Room 5316 CC
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
734-615-4062

Elisabeth Heath, M.D.
Associate Center Director, Translational Sciences
Leader, Genitourinary Oncology Multidisciplinary Team
Professor of Oncology and Medicine
Karmanos Cancer Institute
4100 John R Street
Mail Code: HW01HO
Detroit, MI 48201
313-576-8717

Ganesh Palapattu, M.D.
George F and Sandy G Valassis Professor of Urology
Professor and Chair, Department of Urology
University of Michigan
1500 E. Medical Center Drive 3875 TC
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
734-936-9269


Karmanos Cancer Institute researchers participate in the following:

Administration Core

Core Directors:

The Michigan Prostate SPORE Administration Core is responsible for the leadership, guidance and management of this proposal. The Administration Core oversees all aspects and performs numerous duties across the wide scope of the SPORE to support the translational goals of the investigators. The SPORE Administration Core is guided by the following Specific Aims:

  • Aim 1: Provide scientific, programmatic and administrative leadership to all aspects of the SPORE.
  • Aim 2: Develop, facilitate and monitor progress of translational aims with project Co-Leaders.
  • Aim 3: Identify, support, and facilitate scientific collaborations. The Administration Core is charged with creating a culture of collaboration through fostering and helping to establish and maintain successful collaborations.
  • Aim 4: Facilitate communication between investigators and groups within the Michigan Prostate SPORE as well as with other institutional SPOREs, the SPORE network outside the University of Michigan (U-M), Karmanos Cancer Institute (KCI), NCI and investigators across the spectrum of translational cancer research.
  • Aim 5: Perform fiscal and data management functions.
  • Aim 6: Coordinate patient advocacy and provide functional and ethical oversight to projects and cores.

The Core provides support and oversight to ensure that all investigators have IRB and animal approvals in place to conduct research. The Core will develop and maintain an advocacy portal for our prostate cancer patient community. Arul M. Chinnaiyan, M.D., PhD (U-M) serves as Core Director. Ganesh Palapattu, M.D. (U-M) and Elisabeth Heath, M.D. (KCI) will serve as Core Co-Directors of the Administrative Core and provide overall scientific oversight. Dr. Chinnaiyan will be responsible for overall program organization and fiscal oversight as well as the Biostatistics/Bioinformatics and Biospecimen/Pathology Cores. Dr. Palapattu will be responsible for mentorship and development of collaborators and trainees, oversight of the Career Enhancement Program and synergies between U-M and KCI programs. Dr. Heath will oversee clinical trials and therapeutics, patient advocacy, minority community engagement, and the Developmental Research Program. This Core provides the framework to support the success and mission of the Michigan Prostate SPORE as a cohesive group of investigators committed to supporting translational research in prostate cancer.


Developmental Research Program

Program Directors:

Recognizing that developmental research funds are an integral part of the SPORE, we commit approximately $150,000 per year to these endeavors. This represents a significant portion of the Prostate SPORE budget and reflects the continued commitment to the development of innovative translational research in prostate cancer. The focus of the Developmental Research Program (DRP) is to provide investigators the resources to generate preliminary data for the submission of an R01 grant application or an equivalent proposal.


Career Enhancement Program

Program Directors:

Prostate cancer research has been greatly hindered by the paucity of new investigators entering the field. In recognition of the need to help establish independently funded investigators in the field of translational prostate cancer research, the Michigan Prostate SPORE has supported two to three junior faculty per year. The focus of the Career Enhancement Program (CEP) is to provide investigators the resources to generate preliminary data for subsequent NIH R01 grant applications or future SPORE projects.

To see additional programs under this SPORE grant, visit this website.

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