Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine have received $3,568,639 from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) for three new grants focused on tobacco control, cancer screening and novel treatments for cancer in children and adults.

CPRIT launched in 2009 following a constitutional amendment to commit $3 billion to the fight against cancer over 10 years. This year, CPRIT has awarded 57 new grants totaling more than $73.5 million to support academic research, prevention, product development research and the recruitment of outstanding cancer scientists to academic institutions in Texas.

“It is an honor for Baylor College of Medicine researchers and clinicians to receive funding from CPRIT again this year,” said Dr. Adam Kuspa, senior vice president and dean of research at Baylor. “In the past, CPRIT’s continued support has resulted in breakthroughs in key research areas across the College, and these new grants will drive crucial screening efforts and enable innovative research in cancer therapies in both adult and pediatric patients.”

Dr. Roger Zoorob, the Richard M. Kleberg, Sr. Professor and Chair in Family Medicine, received a $1,472,918 tobacco control and lung cancer screening grant to achieve equitable access to lung cancer screening and smoking cessation treatment through a comprehensive primary care and community health approach.

Dr. Richard Hurwitz, associate professor of pediatrics-oncology and member of the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center at Baylor, was awarded a $1,195,721 grant as an individual investigator for cancer research in children and adolescents. His project will study the viability of using microwafers as a novel drug or gene delivery vehicle for non-invasive treatment of retinoblastoma.

Additionally, Dr. Yongcheng Song, associate professor of pharmacology and chemical biology, received $900,000 as an individual investigator to support his work in using small molecule probes to target histone acetyltransferase enzymes, which play a role in epigenetic regulation of gene expression. Song is also a member of the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center.

“CPRIT funding allows us to focus on a range of cancers, both adult and pediatric, and we are very pleased CPRIT chose to fund these research projects that address important issues in these areas and in the fight against cancer,” said Dr. Kent Osborne, director and professor of the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center.

See a full list of CPRIT grants.