Seattle Cancer Consortium Breast SPORE


graphics representing CORES for Breast Cancer SPORE

Leadership Core

Core Co-Directors: Peggy L. Porter, MD, and Martin (Mac) Cheever, MD

The leadership core provides the overall context for the translational activities of the SPORE and builds on established interdisciplinary collaborations.  Drs. Porter and Cheever, co-principle investigators of the SPORE, co-direct the core and lead an executive committee (EC), composed of all project and core leaders and breast cancer patient advocates, primarily responsible for overall planning and evaluation. The EC is advised on scientific direction, planning and evaluation of the translational progress of SPORE projects and activities by both an External Advisory Board, which includes three national SPORE leaders, and an Internal Advisory Board, which includes two SPORE leaders. To maintain a high degree of translational research focus to all SPORE activities, the EC meets and interacts regularly with the SPORE career enhancement and developmental research programs.  

Specimen Acquisition and Pathology Core

Core Director: Peggy Porter, MD
Co-investigator: Ming-Gang Lin, MD

The specimen acquisition and pathology core is a key component of the SPORE that supports the translational goals of SPORE projects, as well as developmental projects funded through the SPORE. Dr. Porter’s leadership provides not only research and clinical breast pathology expertise but also integration of core activities with the SPORE overall, and developmental projects in particular. This coordination of specimen acquisition and distribution with promotion of new research greatly aids translation of basic discoveries into experiments involving human samples. This core augments the existing robust Cancer Consortium Breast Specimen Repository (BSR) and functions to centralize specimen acquisition, processing, pathologic analysis and distribution of samples needed by SPORE projects. It also provides a laboratory base for select biomarker assays in support of the major and developmental projects.

Clinical Core

Core Director: Julie Gralow, MD
Co-investigators: V.K. Gadi, MD, PhD, and Jennifer Specht, MD

The importance of clinical expertise to effectively carry out translational research objectives cannot be overstated. Laboratory discoveries can only be developed into clinical tools if clinical input is incorporated early into all aspects of research planning and implementation. This core is well-positioned to take advantage of Fred Hutch/UW Consortium research, clinical strengths and institutional alliances to maximize exchange of ideas and facilitate translation, both to and from the clinic. The clinical core of the SPORE program provides this critical link by incorporating a highly effective breast cancer clinical team into the overall structure of the SPORE. The clinical core is responsible for facilitating translational research through the support of clinical trials and clinical research studies, as well as providing clinical education throughout the program. Additionally, the clinical core serves to mentor and find clinical collaborators for laboratory investigators, with particular emphasis on those funded through the SPORE’s developmental research program. By design, the clinical core works closely with the specimen acquisition and pathology core, which procures and processes specimens for SPORE projects after initial contact is made through the clinical core. The clinical core also interacts closely with the biostatistical core in designing and analyzing studies, and is works with the Fred Hutch/UW Consortium’s Clinical Trials Support Office that is responsible for management of all clinical trials.

Biostatistical Core

Core Director: Li Hsu, PhD
Co-investigators: Ted Gooley, PhD, and Barry Storer, PhD

The biostatistics core provides essential biostatistical support to Seattle Cancer Consortium Breast SPORE investigators. The core links study design, data collection, measurements, and analysis to the critical hypotheses and questions studied by SPORE investigators whose research involves basic sciences, epidemiology, population studies, and clinical research. The core investigators have diverse and complementary expertise, and conduct analyses using data from a wide variety of experimental technologies. For some of these technologies, analytic methods are still evolving. Core investigators are part of Consortium biostatistical research groups that are leaders in the areas of biomarker development, computational biology, and bioinformatics. The Core is well positioned to meet the diverse needs and address the translational aims of the breast SPORE.