Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation and Van Auken Private Foundation Announce the 2018 Young Innovators Team Award for Lung Cancer Research

Posted by Kassy Perry

Award funds teams of young lung cancer researchers within five years of their first faculty appointment

SAN CARLOS, CA (May 31, 2018) — The Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation (ALCF), in collaboration with the Van Auken Private Foundation, today announced the 2018 Young Innovators Team Award (YITA) to fund and support teams of young investigators conducting innovative research with a potential of delivering meaningful and measurable results in the field of lung cancer.

“Our goal is make lung cancer a chronically managed disease and we are looking to fund brilliant, out-of-the-box research that will save lives,” said Bonnie J. Addario, 14-year Stage 3-B lung cancer survivor and founder of the ALCF.

The 2018 Young Innovators Team Award will provide up to a total of $250,000 to teams of two or more young investigators over two to three years. The awardees must be within five years of their first faculty appointment (

The YITA Scientific Review Committee will evaluate all submissions on the following four main criteria:

  • Out-of-the-box:High-risk, high-impact research that will typically not be selected for federal funding, is creative and has potential for near-term benefit to lung cancer patients
  • Collaborative: Research that fosters collaboration among young researchers who have not worked together in the past, preferably across-institutions
  • Translational:Research with outcomes that can be quickly moved from the lab to the clinic, or from the bench to bedside
  • Multi-Disciplinary: Projects that involve multiple academic disciplines/specializations in their approach to solve a problem in the field of lung cancer

“Lung cancer kills more people than breast, colon and prostate cancers combined, yet research funding is nearly nonexistent due to the stigma that it is a smokers’ disease. Nearly two-thirds of those recently diagnosed never smoked or quit decades ago,” said Tony Addario, CEO of the Addario Lung Cancer Medical Institute (ALCMI), the ALCF’s sister organization and an international research consortium. “We want to encourage young innovators to work together and collaborate in a transdisciplinary fashion that helps lung cancer patients live longer, and ultimately turn lung cancer into a chronically managed disease.”

The funding mechanism is designed so that young investigators work together in cross-disciplinary teams. The teams drive the projects with guidance from mentors at their own institution. The 2018 YITA Scientific Review Committee also guides and steers their progress, and makes final decisions on continued funding.

“The idea is to encourage new thinking and foster leadership skills among young innovators, instilling confidence in them to drive breakthrough, transdisciplinary science under a collaborative, cross-institutional paradigm,” said David Carbone, M.D., Ph.D. at The Ohio State University, and one of the ALCF Scientific Review Committee members.

“While we have made tremendous progress in the fight against lung cancer over the past decade with the development of targeted therapies and immunotherapy, the fact remains that lung cancer is still the leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. This funding mechanism is to support the research of brilliant young scientists pursuing new cutting-edge approaches in the treatment of this disease,” said Dr. Amy Moore, ALCF director of science and research.

ALCF prefers lung cancer patient-oriented research in the following topic areas (however, the 2018 YITA Scientific Review Committee will evaluate all submissions):

  • Early detection and screening using novel, validated biomarkers
  • Targeting the tumor microenvironment-combination strategies
  • Biomarkers for response to immunotherapies
  • Small Cell Lung Cancer: identifying and targeting specific underlying genomic abnormalities
  • Causative factors in non-smokers

Key Dates

  • May 31, 2018 – RFA announcement
  • May 31, 2018 – Online application submission portal opens
  • July 1, 2018 – Optional pre-application counseling deadline
  • July 15, 2018 – Application submission deadline
  • August 15, 2018 – Peer review round 1
  • October 15, 2018 – Peer review round 2: Top 3-5 applicants present to the Scientific Review Committee/in-person review
  • October 31, 2018 – Award announcements
  • November 1, 2018 – Award start date
  • November 1, 2020 or November 1, 2021 – Award end date (depending on the proposal)

For more information, visit The website also has information on the award, guidelines for submission, FAQs and the online submission portal. ALCF will accept online applications during May 31 – July 15, 2018. ALCF and the Van Auken Private Foundation provide funding for this award.

Amy Moore, Ph.D.
Director, Science and Research

Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation
1100 Industrial Road, #1
San Carlos, CA 94070

About the Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation
The Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation (ALCF) is one of the largest international philanthropies devoted exclusively to eradicating lung cancer through research, early detection, education and treatment. The Foundation’s goal is to work with a diverse group of physicians, organizations, industry partners, individuals, patients, survivors and their families to identify solutions, make timely and meaningful change and turn lung cancer into a chronically managed disease. The ALCF was established on March 1, 2006 as a 501c(3) non-profit organization and has raised more than $30 million for lung cancer research and related programs. The Foundation has received four stars from Charity Navigator and has earned the platinum GuideStar nonprofit seal of transparency. For more information about the ALCF please visit or follow on Facebook or Twitter. 

About the Van Auken Private Foundation
The Van Auken Private Foundation was established on April 17, 2008 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Its purpose is to make contributions, grants and provide assistance to other tax-exempt charitable organizations, in arts, science, medicine, education and worthy social causes.