The Cancer Grand Challenges (CGC) is inviting international teams to apply for up to $25m in funding.
Addressing the obstacles that continue to impede progress in cancer research.
- Addressing the obstacles that continue to impede progress in cancer research Cancer Grand Challenges supports a global community of world-class research teams to come together, think differently and take on some of cancer’s toughest challenges.
- These challenges continue to impede research progress, and no one scientist, institution or country will be able to solve them alone. Cancer Grand Challenges teams are empowered to transcend the traditional boundaries of geography and discipline, and ultimately change outcomes for people with cancer.
- Founded by the two largest funders of cancer research in the world – Cancer Research UK and the National Cancer Institute in the US – and uniting an international community of partners, Cancer Grand Challenges aims to make urgently needed progress against cancer.
Cancer Grand Challenges awards provide up to £20 million for the direct costs of research (research staff, associated running costs and equipment) and all patient advocate involvement and engagement activities. Direct costs are those costs that arise from the conduct of the research undertaken and are verifiable from accounting records.
- Ageing and cancer
- Decipher the functional basis underlying the association between ageing somatic tissues and cancer.
- Cancer cell plasticity
- Understand cancer cell plasticity and its contribution to the development of pan-therapeutic resistance in cancer.
- Cancer Inequities
- Understand the mechanisms through which genetics, biology, and social determinants affect cancer risk and outcomes in diverse.
- Chemotherapy-induced neurotoxicities
- Understand and prevent chemotherapy-induced neurotoxicity and neuropathy.
- Early-onset cancers
- Determine why the incidence of early-onset cancers in adults is rising globally.
- Obesity, physical activity and cancer
- Determine the mechanisms through which obesity and physical activity influence cancer risk.
- Retrotransposable elements
- Understand the roles of retrotransposable elements in cancer.
- Solid tumours in children (2023)
- Develop therapeutics to target oncogenic drivers of solid tumours in children.
- T-cell receptors
- Decipher the T-cell receptor cancer-recognition code.
What do CGC want to see from applicants?
- Cancer Grand Challenges are intended to transform cancer research. Therefore, CGC is looking for applications that reflect this ambition. CGC wants to see proposals for bold, innovative solutions to the challenges CGC has set, and to see evidence that applicants have actively sought out new, perhaps unusual, collaborations that will bring fresh thinking to these problems. Cancer Grand Challenges awards are not intended to fund research that would be fundable by other response-mode schemes and initiatives.
- The Cancer Grand Challenges initiative supports teams involving investigators from institutions across the globe and from different disciplines. Ultimately, CGC is looking for the best teams with the best ideas to address the challenges. CGC also anticipates that proposals will drive global collaboration and bring together diverse expertise in a way that is not already happening. Including non-traditional disciplines is encouraged, both to drive the development of novel technologies or methodologies and to incorporate thinking from other fields that has not yet been applied to cancer. Teams will involve individuals with the potential to become future leaders in cancer research, as well as people affected by cancer to support efforts to ensure the needs of patients are heard and understood.
- The end point of a Cancer Grand Challenges award does not need to be a clinical intervention or clinical impact within the duration of an award. To the greatest extent possible and appropriate, research plans to address a challenge should have a clear line of sight towards preventing, diagnosing or treating cancer.
- Challenge teams
- Applicants should carefully consider the most appropriate make-up for their team and how it will be structured and managed. Teams must be international in nature, with no more than 70% of the activity (and funding) being based in a single country. There is no requirement for teams to be led by, or comprise team members, who are based in the UK or US.
- At EOI stage, CGC expects a team to include one Team Lead and multiple Co-Investigators. Applications are welcomed from teams working across a breadth of disciplines, including but not limited to: the biomedical sciences; software development and technology; engineering and physical sciences; and behavioural, health, population and social sciences.
- The chances of Cancer Grand Challenges teams reaching their objectives are greatly increased by ensuring they draw on members of diverse backgrounds and experiences. As such, CGC strongly encourages applicants to consider team diversity at the earliest possible opportunity. CGC is particularly interested to see teams with Co-Is who are in the early stage of establishing their independent careers.
- CGCSC members are excluded from applying in any capacity (i.e. as TL, co-I or as a collaborator); other researchers from their host institutions can apply.
- If shortlisted, teams will be required to recruit an appropriate team of patient advocates. They will also be strongly encouraged to recruit a part-time programme manager; appointment of a full-time programme manager is a requirement of funded teams.
- Team Lead
- Each team must have one Team Lead, who will be the person responsible for the overall scientific and technical direction of the team, as well as being the lead administrative contact.
- It is recommended that the team should have only one TL. If the team wishes to include multiple TLs, a strong justification should be included in the ‘Rationale for team make-up’ section of the EOI form. Any individual named as a TL will be expected to spend a significant proportion of their research time (25% minimum effort) on the Cancer Grand Challenges award.
- The TL must be based at a research institution which is appropriately accredited or registered in the country in which it is based. Applications cannot be led from commercial entities.
- TLs cannot be named as TL on more than one EOI, but may be named as a Co-I on (an)other EOI(s). Similarly, TLs of existing Cancer Grand Challenges team may not lead new applications, but can participate as Co-Is.
For more information, visit Cancer Grand Challenges.