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Recent PPCM Events

Sept. 24, 2012. The Personalized Proactive Cancer Medicine (PPCM) Tissue Biorepository to get support from $2 million in NIH funds.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH)  granted  $2 million for support of the Biorepository effort of the UC Office of the President’s program for Biomedical Research Acceleration, Integration and Development (BRAID) program.  One leg of the BRAID stool seeks to develop uniform informed consent documentation and Institutional Review Board (IRB) approvals and to harmonize biorepository work at the five medical centers. The PPCM Pilot Program in Pathology is participating in the Biorepository program and is due to receive support from the new grant for a clinical coordinator.  The personnel support will greatly speed up development of an informed concent and adoption of the College of American Pathologist recommendation for best practices for tissue storage - a prime goal of the PPCM.

July 1, 2012.  PPCM pilot program to proactively collect tissue samples from UC Irvine cancer patients gets support from School of Medicine Dean Ralph Clayman
Dr. Clayman approved $25,000 for one year of the Proactive Personalized Cancer Medicine Pilot Project and the Tissue Biorepository at the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. The pilot project, which began in May, is aimed at developing efficient methods of rapidly obtaining excess primary tumor tissue in a rapid and efficient process for freezing in liquid nitrogen with documentation of relevant times of surgery and freezing, and collection of relevant descriptive data characterizing the samples. The development of efficient methods of banking all available primary tumors will be the basis of the planned patient service to store primary tumor tissue for potential sequencing and other genomic testing. The funding is potentially renewable for a second year.

May 1, 2012.  PPCM receives kick-support from the Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center.
The cancer center approved $100,000 for a two-year, joint program in Proactive Personalized Cancer Medicine with the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. The funds will be used to initiate the PPCM pilot program, to be carried out by the Tissue Biorepository of the pathology department. Three cancer center members — Dan Mercola, medical director; Rob Edwards, director of the cancer center’s Experimental Tissue Resource (ETR); and Phil Carpenter, director of Surgical Pathology — and SOM Vice Dean Frank L. Meyskens are cooperating to organize the pilot program.

A major goal of PPCM is to proactively store and provide as a patient service long-term banking of primary tumor tissue for potential sequencing and other genomic testing. The banked tissue is intended to support analyses of the tumor as well as metastatic tissue should progression occur during standard of care therapy. The pilot program’s focus is on development of efficient methods for the rapid collection, freezing and annotation of excess primary tumor tissue following surgery for all UC Irvine Health cancer patients who undergo surgery or biopsy as part of initial cancer treatment. The protocols developed by the pilot program will be used to launch the patient service. UC Irvine sees about 1,900 cases of cancer annually. 

April 3, 2012.  PPCM program presented to Dean’s Research Council.
Drs. Frank Meyskens and Dan Mercola presented a proposal for the Proactive Personalized Cancer Medicine (PPCM) program to the monthly School of Medicine Research Council meeting organized by Dean Ralph Clayman. The PPCM goals were described as focused on the application of genomic sequencing and other genomic tests to cancer as the first stage of a long-term program to combine whole genome sequencing with other advanced genomic methods to detect and develop personalized treatment of disease with treatable genetic alterations (targeted therapy, determination of response to treatment, etc.). It was proposed that the PPCM program should be initiated in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and has the cooperation of Dr. Fritz Lin, interim chair. Pathology would develop a patient-oriented service for banking all UC Irvine Health cancer patients’ primary tumors, using informed consent practices analogous to those used for the storage of cord blood for future use in sequencing and other genomic testing together with any metastatic tissue should the patient progress during standard-of-care therapy.

PPCM goes public.
Details of the Proactive Personalized Cancer Medicine (PPCM) have been presented as a cooperative program of the Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, the School of Medicine’s Dean’s Office and the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at recent UC Irvine meetings.

The presentations included:

  • The Dean’s Research Council on May 30, 2012
  • The Dean’s Retreat on March 9, 2012
  • The cancer center's Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Jan. 25, 2012
  • The cancer center's annual retreat on Nov. 11-12, 2011
  • The cancer center's External Scientific Advisory Board on May 5, 2011
  • The cancer center's Biomaterials Retreat, "From Bench to Clinic," on Jan. 29, 2011.