We are pleased to announce that Guido Eibl, M.D., Principal Investigator and Scientific Director of the Ronald S. Hirshberg Translational Pancreatic Cancer Research Laboratory at the UCLA School of Medicine, has been awarded a $10 million Program Project Grant from the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Dr. Eibl came to UCLA in 2000 for a two year research fellowship in the Department of Surgery and, luckily for us, he chose to dedicate his career to the research of the pancreas. In 2009 he was a Hirshberg Seed Grant Recipient* for his work in “western diet induced pancreatic cancer,” a project which propelled his work towards this larger five year study.
The Program Project Grant is titled Targeting Diet-Induced Promotion of Kras-initiated Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma (P01 CA163200-01A1). The purpose of the study is to unravel the mechanisms by which obesity enhances pancreatic cancer development. In addition, strategies to prevent obesity-induced pancreatic cancer will be investigated. Researchers will use a genetically engineered mouse model and a high fat, high calorie diet to mimic human obesity and pancreatic cancer. Preliminary results will be presented at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Special Conference on Pancreatic Cancer in Lake Tahoe, Nevada, in June 2012. The Program Project is a collaborative effort between the Departments of Surgery and Medicine at UCLA and the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in West Los Angeles, CA. The results obtained from the proposed studies will help to clarify the mechanisms, by which obesity promotes pancreatic cancer development and will help to formulate dietary recommendations to potentially lower the risk in high risk patients or prevent the development of pancreatic cancer.
Congratulations to Dr. Eibl and his team at the Ronald S. Hirshberg Translational Lab. We thank all of our supporters for the donations that allow our seed grant program to flourish.
*The annual Hirshberg Seed Grant Program is a $50,000 one year grant, awarded to investigators to test innovative ideas for improving the outcome for pancreatic cancer. To date, we have funded 44 seed grants.