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Cantley named as NCI Outstanding Investigator

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Lewis Cantley, Ph.D., the Meyer Director of the Sandra and Edward Meyer Cancer Center and Professor of Cancer Biology at Weill Cornell Medicine, has received an NCI Outstanding Investigator Award. The prestigious award supports accomplished leaders in cancer research, who are providing significant contributions toward understanding cancer and developing applications that may lead to a breakthrough in biomedical, behavioral, or clinical cancer research. It provides up to $600,000 in direct costs per year for 7 years, allowing substantial time for funded investigators to take greater risks and be more adventurous in their research.

Cantley made a seminal discovery more than 25 years ago, of the metabolic pathway phosphoinositide 3-kinases (PI3K). Since then, more than 30 PI3K inhibitors have entered clinical trials and an inhibitor (idelalisib) that targets PI3Kδ was recently approved for treating B cell lymphomas.

Cantley will use the grant money provided by the award to further investigate the biochemical mechanisms by which phosphoinositide kinases control cellular metabolism.

"We expect to uncover new targets for pharmaceutical intervention in cancers, new biomarkers for predicting patients who are likely to respond to pathway inhibitors, and new insight into mechanisms of resistance to pathway inhibitors," Cantley said.