A Model Research Grants Program for Organizations Funding Rare Cancer Research

The Research Grants Program of the Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative is widely respected in the sarcoma community for its scope, international focus, quality peer-review process, accountability and openness. Since the publication of Preparing for a Transition in the July 2014 issue of ESUN, we have received numerous requests to explain this program in more detail so that other groups can consider adopting the principles and mechanisms we employ in funding rare cancer research.

Before presenting the details of our Grant Application Processing, I will discuss: (i) the Underlying Principles of our Research Grants Program; (ii) Award Amounts; (iii) Partnerships; (iv) Co-Submitting Grant Applications; (v) What's included in a Grant Application; and, (vi) the role of our Medical Advisory Board. This background is needed to understand the scope and nuances of our grant application process.

Underlying Principles

Features of a High Quality Grants Program

These are the basic principles underlying our Research Grants Program:

Fund quality basic and translational research projects internationally. Physicians and scientists all over the world are researching sarcoma. We fund quality basic science and translational research wherever it is being done. It has been our intent from the onset to fund diverse approaches to studying a wide variety of sarcomas. We believe that advancing the scientific understanding of any sarcoma may help researchers and clinicians better understand "similar" sarcomas.

Encourage collaborative research. We actively encourage collaborative research between investigators in different departments within an institution, among institutions and across national boundaries. It is our belief that bringing together physicians and scientists with complementary skills, interests and experiences can expedite scientific discovery and understanding and move basic and translational research ahead more quickly.

Embrace Open Science principles. Open Science implies, in part, the timely and public dissemination, availability and use of scientific data as well as the sharing of experimental methodology and observations.

• The principles of open science apply to all the research projects that we consider for funding. Investigators are required to describe to their peers in the sarcoma community what is being attempted in their research when the grant is awarded and, at the end of the grant period, they must describe what was accomplished. This is done by publishing publically accessible Experimental Plan and Research Report articles on the Internet and then widely disseminating links to this material within the sarcoma community. Importantly, these articles are published juxtaposed to one another in our peer-reviewed publication, ESUN.

• Knowing the typical delay in publishing in medical journals, this requirement is to give early feedback to the sarcoma community describing what the investigators are pursuing in their research and what was accomplished. The Research Report article does not preclude the submission of articles incorporating results from the study to relevant medical journals. Rather, the report, which is directed at sarcoma researchers and clinicians, should present the important results of the research without giving all of the detail that is required in a scientific journal article – for example, it would leave out most of the specific detailed graphs, charts and tables and the details of the biostatistical analysis.

• A Letter of Publications Compliance is required from each investigator indicating they will adhere to these publication requirements before a grant application is put into the peer-review process.

• Our Open Science focus implies that we do not fund for-profit, commercial companies or grant applications in which one for-profit commercial company is given a competitive advantage over other such companies by having early access to unpublished results, methods, samples, etc.

Establish and maintain a quality scientific peer-review process. It is, as a general rule, very difficult to identify quality science without peer review. We ask each reviewer to recommend a proposal for funding only if stands out as a significant approach to studying an important issue in sarcoma. There are a number of steps that come into play to help us ensure the quality of our peer-review process. Each grant application, other than our International Collaborative Grants (ICG), is reviewed by four specialists in the field. An ICG is examined by six reviewers.

• It is our intent to give useful, detailed feedback regarding the proposed research to an applicant whether or not a grant is funded.

• We employ a "blind" review process in which the names of the reviewers are not disclosed to the investigators who have submitted the grant application.

    • Reviewers should be: (a) Expert in the sarcoma under consideration and the underlying science which forms the basis of the proposed research; and (b) Have no Conflict of Interest (COI) with the investigator, the investigator's institution, or any other issue which might result in a COI, e.g., the use of an agent in which the reviewer has a vested interest.

• We obtain the names of potential reviewers from members of our Medical Advisory Board (MAB) and from reviewing recently published sarcoma and cancers research literature.

• Decisions to fund, reject or recommend that the application be revised and resubmitted are based solely on the content of the four to six detailed reviews.

Review and make decisions about grant applications as quickly as possible. No deadlines exist for submitting grant applications. Our peer review process typically takes three to four months to complete. This allows funded research studies to begin without having to wait for annual or semi-annual grant review deadlines.

Focus the budget on the research. The principal investigator's salary is not supported nor are administrative fees, travel expenses, conference-related fees, publication costs, etc. The Institution's financial officer must submit a Letter of Financial Compliance with the grant application indicating that this principle will be enforced.

Do not fund clinical trials. While not funding clinical trials, proposals that undertake research studies with patients who are participating in an investigational study are considered.

Award Amounts

Grants are typically awarded for a period of one year in the amount of $50,000. We consider grant applications that span two years of funding for $100,000. The need for two years to conduct the study must, of course, be clearly justified and a detailed 2-year budget must be presented. These grants often involve one or two investigators within an institution or in two separate institutions. We also fund larger International Collaborative Grants (ICGs) which involve 3-5 researchers from at least three different countries. These $250,000 grants are awarded for a period of 2-years. ICG teams collaboratively employ their skills and resources in order to make more progress than each investigator can make individually. We anticipate that grants we have funded will be the basis for investigators pursuing substantial follow-on funding, e.g., in the US via a National Institute of Health R01 Grant.


We actively seek out sarcoma advocacy groups to help us fund research studies which have been recommended for awarding through our peer-review process. By combining financial resources, we and our partner organizations stretch our research dollars and fund more substantive research studies jointly than we could fund independently. We believe that research needs to proceed on all types of sarcomas, and we understand that many of our partners want to cure a specific sarcoma subtype that has affected them and those they love. We welcome targeted donations that can be used to support research on a specific sarcoma or on a group of sarcomas, e.g., pediatric sarcomas. To date, over 20 sarcoma advocacy organizations have partnered with us to help fund various research studies.

Co-Submitting Grant Applications

Applicants who are considering co-submitting their research proposal to another organization for consideration, must, in the detailed description of the grant application and the associated budget, clearly indicate the nature of the support being requested from the Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative and from the other organization. We will not make a decision about funding prior to the other organization's decision unless we are administering the peer-review process for both organizations. We do not fund grant applications which have not gone through our peer-review process. Our decision on whether or not to process the grant application is contingent on the outcome of the review process of the grant application by the other organization if they are conducting their own peer-review process.

What is included in a Grant Application?

The following is a brief summary of what is included in a collaborative grant application. It should be easy for the reader to deduce similar requirements for grant applications not involving collaboration.

Purpose of the specific investigation and its component research projects. A diagram and related discussion should be included which describe how the proposed research projects are interrelated and which investigators are involved in each project. It should show the flow of information and results among the projects and should help the reviewers gain an understanding of how the research projects fit together into a coherent whole and how the collaborations actually come into play. Each project should have at least two of the members of the team from different institutions involved in the actual research. There should be at least one research project with a translational component with a description of a clear path to clinic work.

Research plan, experimental design, analysis, and impact statement for each project. Include background and preliminary data to justify the project, taking into account related work in the field. Include a description of the laboratory where the work will be undertaken and what equipment will be used during the course of the project.

Relevant references which are used to substantiate the scientific issues discussed. The space for references is limited. The most relevant citations should be included and should be detailed enough so a reviewer can conveniently locate each referenced article.

The description of a credible structure to maintain the collaboration (meetings, exchanges, site visits, etc.). The team should hold two meetings each year, at least one of which is a small, informal meeting where they invite other researchers with similar interests to discuss their finding and enlarge the circle of collaboration. (We also encourage teams to consider holding group conference calls or video link meetings on a reasonably regular basis, as it is important to keep busy groups plugged in with each other as a team. The minutes from these meetings can be very valuable).

Future Directions, i.e., what are the next steps that can be undertaken if the proposed research projects are successful and what steps if they are not.

A budget describing how the requested funds will be spent. There should be leveraged funds – each team member should be currently funded in research in the sarcoma under consideration and bring some of their current funding to the collaboration and this should be explicitly reflected in the proposed budget. A single point of financial interaction with the Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative, e.g. with the investigator at one of the institutions playing a financial coordination role is encouraged, but not mandatory.

All grant applications are submitted electronically and must include: (1) Our completed grant application (in both Adobe PDF and Microsoft Word formats); and (2) The NIH bio-sketches of the principal investigator, the co-principal investigators, and the research fellows associated with the proposed study (in Adobe PDF format).

An originally signed copy of our grant application form along with the originally signed Institution's Letter of Financial Compliance from each participating institution and the originally signed Investigator's Letter of Publication Compliance from each investigator must be sent to us in order to enter the application into the grant review process. As soon as we receive the originally signed documents and the electronic material, we will put the grant application into the peer-review process.

Medical Advisory Board

Before learning how our grant applications are processed, it will be useful to understand the role of our Medical Advisory Board (MAB) in the Research Grants Program. The membership of the MAB has varied over time, consisting of pathologist, medical oncologist, surgeons, radiologist, clinicians, and basic science researchers from various countries. Board members are appointed for a 2-year term with a possible extension of two years. Appointments of members are staggered so there is non-disruptive turnover on the MAB. There are no formal meetings of the MAB. All interactions occur by phone, e-mail, or a service like Skype. Being a member of the Board is a completely voluntary position; there is no remuneration.

The Board is a working Board, not a titular board. Specific responsibilities are outlined in an "exploratory" letter sent to a MAB candidate to investigate their interest in joining the Board. The letter states that a MAB Member is expected to:

• Review one grant application every three months, i.e. four grant applications a year.
• Reply to occasional requests to:

• Suggest appropriate candidate reviewers for a grant application

• Give a quick analysis of grant application idea, i.e., should an investigator be encouraged to submit a full grant application based upon an abstract of the focus of their proposed research project

• Evaluate "out-of-the-box" ideas as a basis of seeking out and encouraging grant submission in "scientifically interesting" areas

• Suggest International Collaborative Grant (ICG) topics and "coordinating investigator" candidates

• Suggest candidates for MAB appointment

• Recommend topics for potential grant applications and candidate investigators to approach to submit grant applications.

A member of the MAB may submit a grant application, but there are no guarantees whatsoever that it will be funded. It will go through the peer-review process just like any other grant application. Given a Board of 15-20 members and with the expectation of 4 reviews per member over the year, the MAB is collectively responsible for 60-80 detailed reviews each year.

Grant Application Processing

The Research Grants Program involves a Director (DRGP) and a number of Grant Application Review Coordinators (GARC). The DRGP interacts directly with investigators in all matters. A GARC interacts with the reviewers. Processing of grant applications is explained in the following steps.

1. An investigator requests a grant application form and guidelines for submitting an application.

2. The DRGP sends the guidelines and a request for a brief description of the intended submission including an abstract, the names and institutions of the investigators, and an estimate of the time and amount that will be requested.

3. The investigator returns the description as requested.

4. The DRGP's response:

a. Encourage submission and send the grant application form.
b. Indicate not funding in the particular area of investigation.
c. Request input from one or more MAB members regarding the investigator's abstract before replying. Based on the MAB replies, proceed with a or b or request additional information from investigator and return to relevant MAB members.

5. The investigator submits the completed grant application and all associated material.

6. The DRGP's response to receiving this material:

a. If everything is in order (application within page limits, budget clearly identifies expenditures in line with guidelines, letters of compliance are worded correctly, bio-sketches of investigators are included, etc.) then the DRGP indicates the application will be put into the peer-review process as soon as the originally signed copies of the material are received. Proceed to Step 7.
b. If something is incorrect or missing then write letter clarifying what is needed. Go back to Step 5.

7. The DRGP sends a complete grant application package to a Grant Application Review Coordinator (GARC) consisting of a PDF of the grant application form and a PDF of the bio-sketches of the investigators

8. The GARC identifies candidate reviewers from: (a) current medical journals, conferences and workshops; and, (b) recommendations from selected MAB members.

9. The GARC sends letters to potential reviewers. The letter includes the names and institutions of the investigators, the abstract from the grant application form, how much they are requesting and for what period of time.

10. The GARC sends review package to individuals who have agreed to undertake the review.

11. The GARC continues with the previous 2 steps until four reviewers are in place, e.g. by requesting recommendations for candidate reviewers from people who cannot undertake the review.

12. When a review is received, the GARC examines it for detail and potential bias; e.g., scores of overwhelming praise or excessively negative content are suspect when taken in the context of the other reviews. Superficial reviews typically consist of many sections in which the reviewer merely restates or summarizes the investigator' words, rather than critically evaluating aspects of the proposed research. If the review is superficial or biased, the GARC acquires a replacement reviewer.

13. After 6 weeks the GARC sends out follow-up letters to delinquent reviewers.

14. When four reviews have been received, the GARC sends the DRGP a:

a. Reviewers' Comments Packet consisting of an anonymized collection of all the reviewers' comments.

b. Funding recommendation. We ask reviewers to provide detailed comments on a range of scientific issues related to the proposed research project as well as on the budget, laboratory facilities, and experience and background of the investigators. We ask them for two separate figures of merit at the end of their evaluation. Since we have a limited amount of money to support research, we ask each reviewer to strongly recommend a proposal for funding only if stands out as a significant approach to studying an important issue in sarcoma. If, upon peer review, the majority of reviewers (3 of the 4 or, in the case of an ICG, 5 of the 6) strongly recommend that we fund the work, we will proceed to do so.

    • Scientific Merit Evaluation: We ask each reviewer to summarize their evaluation of the scientific merit of the proposal using a scale of 1 to 10. A "1" is equivalent to "The scientific aspects of this grant application are of the highest standard and a "10" is equivalent to "There are substantial scientific flaws in the proposed research."

    • Funding Recommendation: Similarly, we ask each reviewer to summarize their recommendation about funding this application using a scale of 1 to 10. A "1" is equivalent to "I recommending funding this proposal without reservation." And a "10" is equivalent to, "I definitely do not recommend funding it."
    The possible funding recommendations are therefore:

    i. Fund the grant application.
    ii. Reject - do not fund the grant application.
    iii. Provisionally accept with specific revisions.
    iv. Revise and resubmit application.

Funding, Revising or Rejecting the Grant Application

The DRGP communicates results of the review process to the investigator. If the grant application is rejected, the DRGP notifies the investigator and handles all follow-up correspondence. If the grant application is provisionally accepted with specific revisions or the investigators are recommended to revise and resubmit it, the DRGP sends a description of the specific requirements to investigators. When the investigators provide the relevant materials, the DRGP re-enters the above Grant Application Processing process at Step 5 above. The same GARC is involved in processing the review of the revision who was involved in the processing of the original grant application.

If the grant application is recommended for funding, the DRGP:

1. Sends congratulatory letter to investigator with grant amount and period, date the grant will be formally announced, due date of experimental plan article, due date of research report article, and request for Press Release contact.

2. Contacts other sarcoma advocacy groups about co-funding opportunity.

3. Sends letter asking investigator for material related to grant announcement (photo, Q&A, videos).

4. Issues checks on or near announcement date.

5. Publishes the Experimental Plan and Grant Announcement on the Internet.

6. Notifies the sarcoma community (physicians, patients, caregivers, survivors and sarcoma advocacy groups) about the Experimental Plan and Grant Announcement.

7. Sends thank you notes to major donors with link to Experimental Plan and Grant Announcement.

8. Sends link to Experimental Plan and Grant Announcement to investigators.

9. Follows up, near end of grant period, with a reminder to the investigator about the due date of the Research Report article.

The DRGP then repeats steps 5-8 for the Research Report article.

Experiences and Summary

It should also be obvious that there are other entry points to the Grant Application Processing in addition to the letter of inquiry from an investigator. Typically these alternative mechanisms encompass Steps 1-4, culminating in Step 5 in the Grant Application Processing section, above. To start the process, we might also:

Engage in a discussion with a potential applicant at a conference, workshop or other event.

Write or call a potential applicant based on an article he/she had written or an article discussing or reviewing some of their work (both out-of-the-box ideas and not so out-of-the-box ideas).

When an investigator is encouraged to submit an application, the caveat is mentioned that there are no guarantees whatsoever that it will be funded. It will go through the peer-review process just like any other grant application.

Further, it is important to note that there are other important uses of research funds, among them are:

Helping sponsor scientific meetings (such as the Sarcoma Biology meeting)

Funding targeted Research Fellow Programs at a Sarcoma Center

Sponsoring Young Researcher Awards (e.g., via the Connective Tissue Oncology Society and American Society of Clinical Oncology)

Many of the characteristics which differentiate our Research Grants Program from other such programs have had many positive effects. We have, for example, received scores of letters from investigators whose grant applications have not been funded thanking us for the quality of the reviews, noting that the reviewers' comments directly impacted how they would formulate and conduct their future research. We have received letters from investigators we have funded telling us of letters they received from sarcoma researchers who read either their Experimental Plan or Research Report article which subsequently led to new collaborations and new friendships. All but only a very few of the over 55 research grants we have funded have resulted in at least one article in a relevant medical journal. Many have produced two or more such articles. The research fellows and assistants who have participated in the semi-annual International Collaborative Grant teams meetings have benefitted enormously from understanding early in their career the benefits of collaborative research. As a final example, we can state that some of our International Collaborative Grants have resulted in teams of investigators and clinicians, including and beyond the original set of investigators, who are now actively involved in joint research projects which emanated from our original grant.

I hope that this article has given you an understanding of the principles underlying the Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative's research grants program and how they have influenced its administration and growth. There are, of course, forms and guidelines associated with submitting a grant application.

For those of you who, after reading this article, would like to make a financial contribution to a sarcoma advocacy organization that funds sarcoma research, I recommend you consider reading the editorial Supporting Sarcoma Advocacy Organizations which appeared in the last issue of ESUN, as it presents criteria for you to consider when making your decision.

I want to thank the many doctors and researchers who reviewed drafts of this article, checking it for completeness, accuracy and clarity. Some of them have received grants from us, while others have not. Almost all of them, at one point, have reviewed one or more grant applications for us. I also want to thank the patients, caregivers, and survivors who read the drafts and who, along with the physicians and researchers, gave useful feedback and suggestions.

Awarded Sarcoma Research Grants

The Initiative has funded and co-funded the following peer-reviewed studies. Findings from many of the completed studies have been published in professional journal articles.

2017 Grants

The p53 Axis in Synovial Sarcoma

$500,000 International Collaborative Study by three researchers in three countries
University of British Columbia, Cancer Centrum Karolinska and the University of Utah

2016 Grants

Maximizing Therapeutic Response in Leiomyosarcoma

$1 Million Collaborative Grant for a Study led by five researchers in three countries
Brigham and Women’s Hospital, West German Cancer Center, Bergonie Institute, Massachusetts General Hospital, Stanford University Medical Center

2015 Grants

ImmunoSarc: Understanding the Immune Response in Sarcomas

$340,400 Grant for a Study led by five researchers in four countries
University of British Columbia, Centre Léon Bérard, Icahn School of Medicine, Kinghorn Cancer Center

Identifying the Molecular Determinants of Pazopanib Response

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Paul Huang, PhD
Institute of Cancer Research in London, United Kingdom

Developing Novel Therapeutic Intervention for Ewing Sarcoma

$100,000 Grant for a Study led by Shyam S. Biswal, PhD
Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland

2014 Grants

Suppression of CIN in Osteosarcoma to Enhance Therapeutic Response

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Amity Lynn Manning, PhD
Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston

An International Collaborative Study of Liposarcoma - Part II

$250,000 Grant for a Study led by four researchers in three countries
Oslo University Hospital, University of Melbourne and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

The Immune System and Chondrosarcoma

$108,640 Grant for a Study led by Aurélie Dutor, PhD
Université Claude Bernard in Lyon, France

An International Collaborative Study of Synovial Sarcoma

$250,000 Grant for a Study led by Torsten O. Nielsen, MD, PhD
University of British Columbia in Canada

The International Sarcoma Kindred Study

$250,000 Grant for a Study led by David Thomas, FRACP, PhD
Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Australia

MicroRNAs in Osteosarcoma Development and Metastasis

$62,500 Grant for a Study led by Rami Aqeilan, PhD
Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Mechanisms of EWS/FLI1-GLI1 Activation in Ewing Sarcoma

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by William A. May, MD
Children's Hospital Los Angeles

2013 Grants

Genetic Biomarkers in the p53 Pathway for Sarcoma Susceptibility

$40,000 Grant for a Study led by Gareth L. Bond, PhD
Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research

Developing Novel Therapeutic Options for Leiomyosarcoma

$150,000 Grant for a Study led by Matt van de Rijn MD, PhD
Stanford University

Epigenomic Enhancer Profiling of Osteosarcoma Metastasis

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Peter Scacheri, PhD and Chand Khanna, DVM
Case Western Reserve University and the National Institutes of Health

Modeling Treatment Response of NF1-Deleted Sarcoma

$69,000 Grant for a Study led by David Kirsch, MD, PhD
Department of Radiation Oncology at Duke University School of Medicine

Deletion Of Type 4 Collagens in Leiomyosarcomas

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Bradley J. Quade, MD, PhD
Department of Pathology at Harvard Medical School

2012 Grants

Immunotherapy for Pediatric Sarcomas

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by
Pediatric Oncology Branch of the National Cancer Institute

An International Collaborative Study of Bone Sarcoma Metastasis

$250,000 Grant for a Study led by:

  • David Loeb, MD, PhD at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD
  • Elizabeth Lawlor, MD, PhD at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI
  • Heinrich Kovar, PhD at the Children's Cancer Research Institute in Vienna, Austria
  • Katia Scotlandi, PhD at the Instituto Ortopedico Rizzoli in Bologna, Italy
MTAP Dysregulation in Osteosarcoma and Malignant Fibrous Histiocytoma of Bone

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Olga Camacho-Vanegas, PhD and John Martignetti, MD, PhD
Departments of Genetics and Genomic Sciences at Mount Sinai School of Medicine

The Hippo Pathway in Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Corinne Linardic MD, PhD
Department of Pediatrics at Duke University

ROCK Inhibition as an Anti-Angiosarcoma Therapeutic

$45,000 Grant for a Study by Brad A. Bryan, PhD
Center of Excellence in Cancer Research at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center

An Investigational Platform for the Study of Myxoid Liposarcoma

$250,000 Grant for a Collaborative Study led by:

2011 Grants

The WWTR1/CAMTA1 Fusion Protein in Epithelioid Hemangioendothelioma

$50,000 Grant for a Study by Brian Rubin, MD, PhD
Lerner Research Institute at Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio

International Collaborative Grant on Carcinosarcoma

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by:

Targeting Bone Microenvironment in Ewing’s sarcoma

$90,000 Grant for a Study by Françoise Rédini, PhD 
Université de Nantes 
and led by Nadège Corradini, MD
Mother & Child Hospital in Nantes, France

The Effect of Mir-17-92 Dysregulation in Leiomyosarcoma-Genesis

$50,000 Co-funded Grant for a Study led by Eva Hernando, PhD
New York University School of Medicine in New York, New York

CD99 in Ewing’s Sarcoma

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Michela Rugolo, PhD 
University of Bologna in Bologna, Italy
and led by Katia Scotlandi, PhD
Rizzoli Institute in Bologna, Italy

Deep Exome Sequencing in Chondrosarcomas

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Judith V.M.G. Bovée, MD, PhD and Jan Oosting, MD, PhD
Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands

2010 Grants

Translational Research in Well-Differentiated and Dedifferentiated Liposarcoma

$250,000 Grant for a Study led by:

IGF1R as a Promising Therapeutic Target in MPNST

$50,000 Co-funded Grant for a Study led by Wei Zhang, PhD
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas
and led by Jilong Yang, MD, PhD 
Tianjin Medical University Cancer Hospital and Institute in China

Targeting the PI3K/AKT Pathway in UPS/MFH 

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Quan-Sheng Zhu, MD, PhD and Dina Lev, MD 
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas

The Role of Cytoplasmic p27kip1 in Metastatic Osteosarcoma 

$50,000 Grant for a Study by Tsz-Kwong Man, PhD
Department of Pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas

2009 Grants

A Preclinical Mouse Model for Targeted Therapy in Uterine Leiomyosarcoma

$25,000 Grant for a Study by Sandra Orsulic, PhD and Beth Karlan, MD
Women’s Cancer Research Institute at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, California

Molecular Basis of Genomic Instability in Osteosarcoma 

$50,000 Grant for a Study by Pulivarthi H Rao, PhD and Debananda Pati, PhD
Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas

Tumorigenic Cells in Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumors

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Sean J. Morrison, PhD
Life Sciences Institute Center for Stem Cell Biology at University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan

2008 Grants

Telomere Maintenance Mechanisms in Liposarcomas

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Dominique Broccoli, PhD
Department of Laboratory Oncology Research at the Curtis and Elizabeth Anderson Cancer Institute, Memorial University Medical Center in Savannah, Georgia

PEDF: A Potential Therapeutic Agent for Osteosarcoma 

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Professor Peter F. M. Choong, MD 
and involving Crispin R. Dass, PhD
Orthopaedics Department of St. Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne, Australia

Analysis of NR0B1 in Ewing’s sarcoma 

$100,000 Grant for a Study led by Stephen L. Lessnick, MD, PhD
Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah

miRNA Profiling for Liposarcoma 

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Dina Lev, MD
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas
and led by Matt van de Rijn, MD, PhD
Stanford University School of Medicine in Stanford, California

A Mouse Model for Chordoma 

$25,500 Co-funded Grant for a Study led by Brian Harfe, PhD 
University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida

Deletion of the WWOX Gene in Osteosarcoma 

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Jilong Yang, MD, PhD
Tianjin Cancer Hospital and Institute in China
and led by Wei Zhang, PhD
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Texas

The Role of CIP4 in Osteosarcoma Metastases 

$50,000 Co-funded Grant for a Study led by Nadezhda V. Koshkina, PhD
and involving Seth J. Corey, MD 
Children's Cancer Hospital at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center

Small-Molecule Targeting of EWS-FLI1

$50,000 Co-funded Grant for a Study led by Jeffrey A. Toretsky, MD 
and involving Milton L. Brown, MD, PhD
Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University

Identification of the Ewing’s Sarcoma Stem Cell 

$37,800 Grant for a Study led by David M. Loeb, MD, PhD and involving Saul J. Sharkis, PhD, Chi Van Dang, MD, PhD and Jason T. Yustein, MD, Phd
Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins Medical School

2007 Grants

MicroRNA Deregulation in Mesenchymal Transformation and Sarcoma-genesis

$50,000 Co-funded Grant for a Study led by Eva Hernando, PhD
New York University School of Medicine

Assessing and Monitoring the Targeted Treatment of Chordoma

$25,000 Grant for a Study led by Dr. Silvana Pilotti
Fondazione IRCCS Istituto dei Tumori in Milan, Italy

2006 Grants

Two Ewing's Sarcoma Research Studies at Huntsman Cancer Institute

$50,000 in Grants for Studies led by Stephen Lessnick, MD, PhD
Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah

Tissue Study in a Phase II Trial of Dasatinib

$25,000 Grant for a Study led by Dr. Scott Schuetze
University of Michigan’s School of Medicine

GIST Research Grants

$10,000 Grant for a Study led by Dr. Sebastian Bauer
West German Cancer Center at the University Hospital in Essen, Germany
and led by Dr. Anette Duensing
Hillman Cancer Center at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute

2005 Grants

Cancer Vaccine Study at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

$50,000 Grant for a Study led by Dr. John Goldberg and Dr. David Fisher

A Pilot Study of Tumor Lysate-Pulsed Dendritic Cell Vaccine

$50,000 Co-funded Grant for a Study led by Dr. James Geiger
Dr. John E. Levine and Dr. Raymond Hutchinson, co-investigators
University of Michigan Medical Center

2004 Grants

Elizabeth Shriver Memorial Research Awards to Study Sarcoma

$25,000 for the Research of Dr. Matt van de Rijn of Stanford University
$25,000 for the Research of Dr. Frederic Barr of the University of Pennsylvania
$25,000 for the Research of Dr. Lisa Wang of Baylor College of Medicine in Houston

2003 Grants

Our First Research Grant

$14,000 for the Research of Dr. Mary Louise Keohan
Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, Columbia University and New York Presbyterian Hospital

Applying for a Grant

As of January 1, 2015, the Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative is no longer accepting grant applications. However, we are delighted to let you know that the Alan B. Slifka Foundation (ABSF) is now accepting and processing sarcoma research grant applications using the Initiative's model. ABSF is committed to ensuring the continuation of a high-quality, global, collaborative, and scientifically open sarcoma research grants program.

We encourage investigators who are pursuing funding for sarcoma research to correspond with Ms. Allison Sole, the Program Officer for ABSF’s Sarcoma Research Grants Program. Her contact information is as follows:

Allison Sole
Program Officer for Sarcoma Research
Alan B. Slifka Foundation
477 Madison Avenue, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10022
Phone: 917 675 2269
E-mail: [email protected]
Web: www.slifkafoundation.org

We are indebted to Ariella Ritvo-Slifka, PhD, the President and Chairwoman of the Alan B. Slifka Foundation, for providing this program to the sarcoma community. We hope the research projects that ABSF funds will be important stepping stones to finding better treatments and cures for many subtypes of sarcoma.