Medical College receives $2.6 million pancreatic cancer grant

The Medical College of Wisconsin has been awarded a five-year, $2.6 million grant from the National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health for its research on new therapeutic approaches for pancreatic cancer treatment.

Michael Dwinell, Ph.D., associate professor of microbiology and molecular genetics at MCW, and Balaraman Kalyanaraman, Ph.D., the Harry R. & Angeline E. Quadracci professor in Parkinson’s research and the professor and chairman of biophysics at MCW will serve as co-principal investigators on the project.

Pancreatic cancer impacts about 46,000 U.S. residents each year, and 90 percent of cases are highly aggressive. A reliably successful treatment has not been established.

Dwinell and Kalyanaraman will lead a team focusing its research on finding ways to slow or stop the spread of cancer cells through the body using energy metabolism inhibitors and relatively non-toxic medications that target mitochondria.

Ultimately, the team’s research could help researchers better understand how metabolism and energy impact pancreatic cancer malignancy and also could lead to the development of new drugs to treat pancreatic cancer.

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