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Meet the Discovery Grant Recipients

The VICC Ambassadors award Discovery Grants to promising young researchers at the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center. These grants help recipients develop the ideas that grow to large federally funded projects aimed at transformative breakthroughs in care. 

Meet our current and past Discovery Grant recipients.

Discovery Grant Recipients
Photo Name Year Project Funded
Jonathan Brown Jonathan D. Brown, M.D. 2017 "Cancer and heart disease: Shared disease mechanisms involving growth and inflammation"
Jacob Houghton Jacob L. Houghton, Ph.D. 2017 "Releasing the brakes on the immune system to enhance personalized treatment of pancreatic cancer"
John Karijolich John Karijolich, Ph.D.  2017 "The enemy within: Regulating the expression of mutagenic DNA" 
Ray Blind Ray Blind, Ph.D. 2016 "Finding drugs to inhibit NR5A"
Tony Capra John A. "Tony" Capra, Ph.D. 2016 "Personalized structural biology to guide cancer treatment"
Manuel Ascano Manuel Ascano, Jr., Ph.D. 2015 "Development of next-generation cancer immunotherapeutics: Targeted delivery of a novel small molecule and enhancement of the immune system"
Justin Balko Justin M .Balko, Pharm.D., Ph.D. 2015 "Non-invasive imaging (PET-scanning) of T-cells in turmors: Toward a biopsy-less biomarker for response to immunotherapies"
Javid Moslehi Javid J. Moslehi, M.D. 2015 "Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) as a screening platform to assess cardiotoxicity with novel cancer therapies" 
Patrick Grohar Patrick J. Grohar, M.D., Ph.D. 2014 "Targeting the 'undruggable' for the treatment of pediatric sarcoma" 
Christine Lovly Christine M. Lovly, M.D., Ph.D. 2014 "Small cell lung cancer: Innovative approaches to study a recalcitrant cancer"
Jason MacGurn Jason A. MacGurn, Ph.D. 2014 "Harnessing protein degradation to fight cancer" 
Ken Lau Ken S. Lau, Ph.D. 2013 "A new way to decipher complexity in solid tumors"
Carlos Lopez Carlos F. Lopez, Ph.D. 2013 "A modeling framework to explain and predict cancer cell removal from cellular signaling networks"
Bryan Venters Bryan Venters, Ph.D. 2013 "Gene regulatory pathways in human leukemia" 
Rebecca Ihrie Rebecca A. Ihrie, Ph.D. 2012 "Spatial patterning and tumor development in the brain"
Jonathan Irish Jonathan M. Irish, Ph.D. 2012 "Activating anit-tumor immunity in combindation with targeted therapy" 
Melissa Skala Melissa Skala, Ph.D. 2012 "Optical metabolic imaging systems for cancer" 
Chad Quarles C. Chad Quarles, Ph.D. 2011 "Early detection of glioma treatment response using MRI-based biomarkers" 
Christopher Williams Christopher S. Williams, M.D., Ph.D. 2011 "BVES interacting proteins in cancer"
Stacey Huppert Stacey S. Huppert, Ph.D. 2010 The promise of the Notch gene as a therapeutic tool for many forms of cancer
Ryoma Ohi Ryoma Ohi, Ph.D. 2010 "On the hunt for the Achilles' heel of mitotic human cancer cells"