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National Cancer Institute Grants $10.8M To ASU Professor

The National Cancer Institute has awarded a major grant to an Arizona State University professor. The grant is part of a new initiative to profile tumors before they become cancerous.

ASU associate professor, Carlo Maley was awarded $10.8 million.

The money will go toward developing a Breast Pre-Cancer Atlas, designed to be an active source of information on breast tumors. Maley said researchers will study different tumors to determine how they become cancerous.

“We will sequence their DNA and their RNA to describe the genome and what genes are turned on," Maley said. "We’ll measure various aspects of what proteins are in the cells and the spatial relationships within the cancer so we can understand the whole ecology of how the tumor cells are interacting with the immune system.”

The study will partner with Duke, Stanford, and Washington University.

“The idea is to provide all that data to the scientific community," Maley said. "We can study these to help us understand one: how they become cancerous and two: (maybe more importantly) how to predict which ones are likely to become cancerous, which ones are going to be dangerous and which ones we can safely just manage.”

Senior field correspondent Bridget Dowd has a bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.