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Oncology Models Forum (OMF)

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Oncology Models Forum

The Oncology Models Forum (OMF) was launched by the NCI in 2014 to fund research into advancing standard practices for modeling human cancers in mice and to facilitate collaborations, data sharing, and harmonization of mouse models. In 2016, the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) was expanded to all mammalian model systems (PAR-16-059) and has been re-issued in 2017 (PAR-17-245), 2020 (PAR-20-131), and 2023 (PAR-23-281).

Unlike many hypothesis-driven and mechanistic R01 projects, this program is devoted to ensuring mammalian models used for translational research questions are appropriate for those purposes and the models provide reliable and informative data for patient benefit. The OMF now includes a range of models including canine, porcine, organoid, and cell line models, in addition to many diverse mouse model systems.

OMF News and Highlights

OMF Scientist Highlight: Diego Castrillon

Dr. Castrillon is a Professor at the University of Texas Southwestern who is generating and characterizing animal models of cancer with high mutation rates that mimic human cancers. In addition to his research, he is making cancer modeling resources from his laboratory available to the community through Jackson Laboratory.

Dr. Castrillon’s team generated a conditional mouse allele that recapitulates the most frequent POLE mutation (that is commonly found in human cancers), which has been used to generate mouse tumor models with high mutational burdens. These models facilitate investigations of tumor biology and differ from other genetically engineered mouse cancer models that generally have very low mutation rates.

His laboratory also created a mouse strain that enables the development of new mouse models of endometrial cancer, including aggressive carcinosarcoma and Pole-ultramutated tumor types. 

OMF Funding Opportunity

PAR-20-131: Research Projects to Enhance Applicability of Mammalian Models for Translational Research (R01 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

OMF Meetings

July 23, 2023
Oncology Models Forum Summer Seminar

March 15-16, 2022
Oncology Models Forum Annual Meeting

December 9, 2021
Oncology Models Forum Fall Seminar

July 27, 2021
Oncology Models Forum Summer Seminar

March 30-31, 2021
Oncology Models Forum Annual Meeting (Virtual) 

January 30, 2020
NCI Oncology Models Forum Meeting (NCI Shady Grove)

November 8, 2018
NCI Oncology Models Forum Meeting (University of California, San Francisco)

September 18-19, 2017
Immune Interventions in Oncology: A Think Tank on Modeling Opportunities using Mice and Human Specimens (NCI Shady Grove)

  • Human Cancer Models Initiative (HCMI) Catalog – Resource of patient-derived next-generation cancer models developed by HCMI, which is an international collaboration between NCI, Cancer Research UK, the Wellcome Sanger Institute, and Hubrecht Organoid Technology
  • NCI Mouse Repository NCI-funded resource for mouse cancer models and associated strains
  • Oncology Model Fidelity Score – Uses the Hallmarks of Cancer to compare cancer animal models to human cancer
  • Single R – Analyzes cellular heterogeneity from single-cell RNA sequencing data
  • Xcell – Analyzes cellular heterogeneity from bulk gene expression data

Contacts for the OMF

For additional information about the OMF, please contact Dr. Joanna Watson or Dr. Christine Nadeau

Funded Projects

Institution Principal Investigator(s) Project Title
University of California, San Francisco Mary Helen Barcellos-Hoff Definition of Immune Infiltrate Phenotype and DNA Damage Response Deficits Across Diverse Murine Mammary Carcinomas 
Broad Institute, Inc. Jesse Samuel Boehm Rapid ex vivo biosensor cultures to assess dependencies in gastroesophageal cancer 
Emory University  Nicholas M. Boulis, Peter Canoll Lentiviral-Induced Swine Model of Spinal Cord Glioma 
Rockefeller University Stylianos Bournazos Novel Transgenic Mouse Models Addressing Outstanding Translational Barriers in Antibody-Based Therapeutics 
Northwestern University  Daniel J. Brat Modeling the Glioblastoma Microenvironment to Uncover Progression Mechanisms and Therapeutic Targets 
University of Nebraska Medical Center Mark A. Carlson Development and Application of a Porcine Model of Pancreatic Cancer 
UT Southwestern Medical Center Diego H. Castrillon Polymerase-Mediated Ultramutagenesis and Carcinogenesis in Mice 
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center Alain Charest, Vassiliki A. Boussiotis

Advancing Treatment Outcomes in Malignant Glioma by Integrating Immunotherapy and Standard of Care Using Genetically Engineered Mice that Recapitulate Molecular Feature of Human Glioma 

Mayo Clinic Arizona Marta Chesi Credentialing a Genetically Engineered Clinically-Relevant Mouse Model of Multiple Myeloma 
University of Michigan Kathleen R. Cho Modeling Factors Associated with Risk of High-Grade Serous Carcinoma in Mice 
Weill Medical College of Cornell University Lukas Edward Dow In Vivo Base Editing for Precision Oncology Models 
Washington University Ryan C. Fields, Richard A. Flavell Advancing Precision Oncology in a Humanized, Fully Autologous Mouse Model 
MD Anderson Cancer Center  Giannicola Genovese Investigation of the Role of Epithelial-Mesenchymal Plasticity in Renal Cell Carcinoma 
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Leighton H. Grimes, Stephanie Halene

Modeling Myelodysplasia 

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Jlenia Guarnerio Comparative Modeling of Sarcoma Microenvironments for the Discovery of Biomarkers and Tumor Vulnerabilities 
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute Kevin Haigis

Mouse Models of Kras-Mutant Colorectal Cancer 

Johns Hopkins University Chien-Fu Hung, Richard Bruce Roden Mouse Modeling of HPV Infection 
Massachusetts Institute of Technology Tyler E. Jacks Development of Novel Metastatic Mouse Models that Recapitulate the Major Immune Contexts of Human Colon Cancer 
Tufts Medical Center Iris Z. Jaffe, Cheryl A. London Credentialing a Cross-Species Platform to Investigate Cancer Therapy-Associated Cardiovascular Toxicity 
Yale University Nikhil Joshi Developing Translationally-Relevant Genetically Engineered Mouse Models of Lung Adenocarcinoma for Investigations in Cancer Immunology 
University of California, San Diego Michael Karin Highly Penetrant and Immunogenic Mouse Models of Non-Viral HCC that are Suitable for Evaluation of Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors 
MD Anderson Cancer Center Frederick F. Lang A Novel Adenoviral-Permissive, Immunocompetent Hamster Model to Evaluate Oncolytic Adenoviral Therapy for Glioblastoma 
Uppsala University Kerstin Lindblad-Toh Enhancing the Dog as a Model for Human Cancers: From Genome Sequence Towards Clinical Trials 
Georgetown University Xuefeng Liu Conditionally Reprogrammed Cell Model for Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer (CRPC) 
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center Scott W. Lowe Rapid and Flexible Precision Oncology Mouse Models of Epithelial Malignancies 
MD Anderson Cancer Center Anirban Maitra Translational Applications in an Animal Model of Pancreatic Cystic Neoplasm and Cancer 
University of California Los Angeles David A. Nathanson, Thomas G. Graeber Mammalian Models for Integrated Metabolic and Molecular Profiling of Malignant Glioma 
University of Pittsburgh Steffi Oesterreich, Andrian V. Lee Credentialing Models of Invasive Lobular Breast Cancer for Translational Research 
H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center Eric Padron Developing and Credentialing Patient-Derived Xenograft Models to Advance Therapeutic Approaches for Chronic Myelomonocytic Leukemia 
University of California, San Francisco Susanna Rosi, Nalin Gupta Myeloid Cells and Radiation-Induced Memory Deficits in Rodent Glioma Model: Sex and Age Effects 
Roswell Park Cancer Institute Mukund Seshadri Radiogenomic Credentialing of Head and Neck Cancer Models 
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center Jesse Joshua Smith Expansion of Tumoroid Models for Precise Treatment of the Rectal Cancer Patient 
Duke University Joshua Clair Snyder

Visualizing Tumor Heterogeneity in an Immune Intact and Autochthonous Mouse Model of Breast Cancer 

University of California, San Francisco Eric Alejandro Sweet-Cordero, David H. Haussler Development of Advanced Preclinical Models for Pediatric Solid Tumors 
Johns Hopkins University Tzyy-Choou Wu

Development of Novel Spontaneous HPV Cervicovaginal Carcinoma Models for Cancer Immunotherapy 

UT Southwestern Medical Center Hao Zhu

Improving Hepatocellular Carcinoma Mouse Modeling by Understanding the Malignant Potential and Biology of Liver Cell Subpopulations 

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