University of Wisconsin Comprehensive Cancer Center
University of Wisconsin
George Wilding, M.D.
Director
600 Highland Ave., Rm. K4/610
Madison, Wisconsin 53792-0001
Tel: (608) 263-8610
Fax: (608) 263-8613
Information on University of Wisconsin Comprehensive Cancer Center
The University of Wisconsin Comprehensive Cancer Center (UWCCC) is an administrative unit of the School of Medicine and Public Health on the UW-Madison campus; however, it serves the entire University cancer research community. The UWCCC represents the consolidated entities of the McArdle Laboratory and the original University of Wisconsin Clinical Cancer Center, both of which were NCI funded cancer centers since 1946 and 1973 respectively. The organizational structure of the UWCCC optimizes the Center’s ability to function as a matrix leader for cancer research within one of the nation’s outstanding research universities. At present, UW-Madison ranks third among all U.S. public universities in research expenditures. Cancer research has played a prominent role in the scientific endeavors of the University of Wisconsin. Included among the long list of accomplishments are the discovery and application of 5-fluorouracil, early clinical investigation of tamoxifen, the discovery of the metabolic activation of chemical carcinogens, and Howard Temin’s Noble Prize winning work on retroviruses and reverse transcriptase.
The UWCCC is organized around nine scientific programs: Genetics, Etiology and Prevention, Experimental Therapeutics, Cell Signaling, Virology, Cancer Control, Radiation and Imaging Sciences, Immunology, and Aging and Cancer. To promote inter-programmatic collaborations, the UWCCC draws upon members of the scientific programs to participate in fourteen multidisciplinary disease-oriented working groups that focus on particular cancers. There are 250 members of the UWCCC who continue a strong and deep program in cancer research. In FY 2005, UWCCC members were awarded more than $116 million direct costs for research awards, including $31 million from NCI and $63 million from other NIH peer reviewed awards. In total, investigators received more than $98 million direct costs in peer reviewed research funding.
The UWCCC has established the following strategic priorities:
  • To pursue outstanding research programs directed toward understanding the causes and biology of cancer and the factors that regulate normal and neoplastic growth and differentiation.
  • To pursue outstanding research programs directed at the identification of cancer risks in the population and the behavioral factors that require modification and public health policy adjustments.
  • To pursue outstanding research programs directed at the development of new methods of prevention, detection, diagnosis and treatment, and to translate these discoveries to patients and to medical practice.
  • To provide training of the highest quality in basic cancer research and clinical cancer care at the graduate and postdoctoral levels.
The University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center is proud to be the only comprehensive cancer center in Wisconsin, as designated by the National Cancer Institute.
In 1971, the National Cancer Act called for the creation of cancer centers of excellence throughout the United States. The Carbone Cancer Center was established as one of the first six university-based comprehensive cancer centers in 1973.
To gain a “comprehensive” designation (the highest ranking given by the National Cancer Institute), a center must meet specific criteria:
  • Strong basic laboratory and clinical cancer research and the translational research that forms the bridge between them
  • Innovative cancer treatments involving clinical trials
  • Cancer prevention and control programs
  • Training and education of health care professionals
  • Cancer information services
  • Community outreach and education
In addition, the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Advisory Board, whose members are appointed by the president of the United States to oversee the NCI’s programs and policies, must recommend approval for a center to receive the comprehensive designation. The center must repeat an external review of the criteria above every five years.
*Source: National Cancer Institute; UW Carbone Cancer Center

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