Zach Reitman, MD, Ph.D., was recently awarded a Mentored Clinical Scientist Research Career Development Award from the National Cancer Institute titled "Enhancing the Efficacy of Radiation Therapy for brainstem glioma by Targeting ATM."
The award, which went into effect on August 1, provides salary support for career development and totals $1.1M over five years.
"The goal of the K08 award is to help me build up my brain tumor research program," said Reitman. "A key component of the award is mentorship from Dr. David Kirsch, a world expert on genetically engineered mouse models and radiation biology in our department, and Dr. David Ashley, the director of the Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center. The K08 will help me determine if the immune system helps mediate treatment responses in childhood brain tumors. The results will help design the next generation of clinical trials. I will use cutting-edge genetically engineered mouse models and single-cell RNA-sequencing approaches to complete the work."
The Reitman Lab was also recently awarded a Chadtough Defeat DIPG (Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma) New Investigator Award for $250,000 over two years entitled "Dissecting mechanisms of radioresistance associated with p53 mutations in DIPG." Funding for that grant started on July 1.
"The New Investigator Award is helping me to find out why some pediatric brain tumors are resistant to radiation therapy and other treatments," said Reitman. "Completing the work will help design new treatments that overcome resistance and improve outcomes for patients with DIPG, a rare but lethal childhood brain tumor."
This article originally appeared on the Duke Department of Radiation Oncology website and was posted here with the author's permission.