NCI Awards Champions Oncology $2M SBIR Grant for Prostate Cancer Research

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Champions Oncology announced today that it has been awarded a two-year, $2 million Small Business Innovation Research grant from the National Cancer Institute to support a project to develop and evaluate the utility of an ethnically diverse group of metastatic prostate cancer patient-derived xenograft (PDX) models.

Approved by the NCI on Sept. 19th, the project will leverage Champions’ current approaches to industrial-scale PDX development, in addition to incorporating novel approaches and techniques to research new prostate PDX models, the company said.

One of the project’s primary goals is to create new tools that will help researchers to better understand the ethnic health disparity in prostate cancer. Fully characterized, ethnically diverse prostate PDX models are under-represented among PDX banks, limiting opportunities for pre-clinical and translational oncology studies, Champions’ added.

In addition to performing and carrying out clinical, molecular, and histological characterization of each model, the firm’s researchers will also perform standard-of-care drug testing. Champions will share models and associated data with the NCI.

“This award allows us to dramatically expand our prostate PDX program and demonstrate the benefits of new techniques and approaches that advance the field,” Champions Chief Medical Officer Angela Davies said in a statement.

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