Prostate Specialized Programs of Research Excellence (SPORE)

Arul Chinnaiyan, MD
Arul Chinnaiyan, M.D., Ph.D.
Welcome to the University of Michigan (U-M) Prostate SPORE website. The U-M Prostate SPORE launched in 1995 as one of the first NCI-funded SPORE programs in the country. The goals of the U-M Prostate SPORE are to foster research productivity, promote interaction and collaboration among researchers, and optimize the institution's strengths and unique scientific opportunities to advance prostate cancer prevention, diagnosis, treatment and survivorship.

Toward these objectives, our team of clinician scientists and researchers have realized major discoveries that have made our program a national leader in translational research. Close collaboration with investigators from across the University of Michigan campus, SPOREs at UM and other institutions, industry, national networks and other Universities have made these discoveries possible.

As Director, I am proud of our talented investigators and the scientific advances achieved. I look forward to opportunities and challenges ahead in our mission to reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with prostate cancer.

News Events

The UM Prostate SPORE received interim funding from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) for 2013-2014 while our 5-year proposal goes through the review process.


UM Prostate SPORE investigators Maha Hussain, M.D., (principal investigator) and Felix Feng, M.D., (co-investigator) have been awarded a $1M, 2013 Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) Challenge Award to study CDK4/6 inhibition and androgen deprivation and the onset androgen deprivation therapy resistance and progression to end-stage disease in men with hormone-sensitive, metastatic prostate cancer.


Muneesh Tewari, MD, PhD, is a recent recruit to the UM Department of Medicine/Division Hematology/Oncology. Dr. Tewari brings a large well-funded research program in circulating miRNAs to the UMCCC Prostate Oncology Program and has an established collaboration with UM Prostate SPORE PI Dr. Chinnaiyan as evidenced by their recent published study on miRNAs in metastatic prostate cancer (PLoS 2013, 8(7):e69239). Dr. Tewari will be actively involved with the UM Prostate SPORE program.


Three UM Prostate SPORE investigators: Rohit Mehra, MD; Irfan Asangani, PhD, and Qi Cao, PhD, are Prostate Cancer Foundation 2013 Young Investigator Award recipients. Each investigator receives $225,000 over three years.


The UM Prostate SPORE Rapid Autopsy Program has recently expanded to include advanced bladder, kidney and penile cancer in addition to prostate cancer. Drs. Rohit Mehra and Ajjai Alva serve as co-chairs of the program with the guidance of Dr. Arul Chinnaiyan. A recent rapid autopsy performed on a patient with a rare familial form of aggressive renal cell cancer happens to be the first such autopsy performed on any patient with metastatic renal cell cancer. The program is envisioned to continue and expand in the future.

7/17/14 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Maha Hussain leads a discussion and evaluation of the current prostate cancer clinical trials portfolio and accrual.

8/7/14 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Soory Varambally presents "MiR-124-P4HA1-MMP1 axis plays a critical role in prostate cancer growth and metastasis."

9/4/14 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. SPORE Biostatistics Core Director Alex Tsodikov will present "Reconciling evidence of the benefit of screening for prostate cancer."

10/2/14 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Prostate cancer clinical trials brainstorming session.

11/6/14 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Summary of current UM prostate sequencing efforts; MET inhibitor clinical trials in prostate cancer; and prostate cancer clinical trials follow-up session.

12/4/14 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Will Roberts presents.

3/17 - 3/19/2014 - Sixth Annual Prostate Cancer Program Retreat, Ft. Lauderdale.

3/3/14 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Presentation TBA

2/2/11 - 2/12/2014 - NCI review of UM Prostate SPORE proposal

2/3/14 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Presentation TBA

1/6/14 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Presentation TBA

12/4 - 12/6/2013 - At the NCI Prostate SPOREs-SUO meeting, Dr. Kathleen Cooney presents "Genetic Variants Associated with Prostate Cancer Aggressiveness," Dr. John Wei discusses PCA3 + T2-ERG and Dr. Ganesh Palapattu is on the expert panel debating biomarkers of prostate cancer aggressiveness.

12/4/13 - NCI Prostate SPOREs-SUO Workshop, 8:00 am - 5:00 pm at the Bethesda North Marriott Hotel and Conference Center.

12/2/13 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. John Wei, MD, will present "Using the New Mi-Prostate SPORE Test."

11/12/13 - 14th Annual Weisbach Lectureship in Prostate Oncology, 12 pm. This year's guest speaker is Karen E. Knudsen, Ph.D., Professor, Depts of Cancer Biology, Urology, & Radiation Oncology Thomas Jefferson University. Dr. Knudsen will present "AR regulation and DNA repair crosstalk: Mechanisms and implications for disease progression."

10/30/13 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Maha Hussain, MD, and Phil Palmbos, MD, will speak on their new PCF Challenge award, "Co-targeting the cell cycle and androgen signalling axis via CDK4/6 inhibition: A novel paradigm for treating metastatic hormone-sensitive prostate cancer."

8/5/13 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Drs. Shaomeng Wang, Felix Feng, Irfan Asangani and Arul Chinnaiyan will be speaking on the bromodomain inhibitor.

7/1/13 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Scott Tomlins, MD, PhD, will be presenting "Interplay of MET and AR in castration resistant prostate cancer."

4/29/13 - Prostate SPORE/Prostate Oncology Meeting, 5:00 pm. Todd Morgan, MD, leads a discussion on possible DOD Physician Research Training Award aims.

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