Stand Up To Cancer - Research Portfolio

Research Portfolio

Research  >  Research Portfolio

Stand Up To Cancer funds collaborative, scientifically rigorous, treatment-focused research to develop new therapies for people with cancer. We support research both on individual cancers and on the underlying mechanisms of cancer.

We do this by funding Team Science, which brings researchers together to work on multidisciplinary projects across universities, medical centers and companies. We also provide Grants to Individuals, which bring new scientists and their ideas into cancer research by funding high-risk, high-reward projects that may not receive support through traditional grant programs.



Stand Up To Cancer Dream Teams pursue cancer research projects that address critical problems in cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment to deliver near-term patient benefit through investigation by a multidisciplinary, multi-institutional, collaborative team of expert investigators and patient advocates. These teams, selected and guided by leaders in the field, take innovative ideas from concept to patient in order to see whether they have the potential to revolutionize cancer care and open whole new fields of investigation.

  • Multiple Accelerated Therapies
  • Up to 50 Researchers
  • Multiple Institutions
  • Stand Up To Cancer Oversight

Flagship projects that bring together multidisciplinary teams from different institutions to address critical problems in cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.

  • Biomedical Researchers
  • Computational Scientists
  • Physicists and Mathematicians
  • Stand Up To Cancer Oversight

For “out there” questions that require a team with diverse expertise to answer.


Convergence Grants bring together quantitative scientists and oncologists in integrated projects focused on cancer biology. Convergence Grants seek to accelerate cancer research and treatment for patients by bringing together scientists from diverse yet complementary disciplines (such as nanotechnology or new materials science).



SU2C Catalyst™ uses funding and materials from the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, diagnostic, and medical device industries to rapidly explore new uses of potential compounds for cancer prevention, detection and treatment. Projects are required to be multi-investigator and multi-institutional.
  • Combination Therapies
  • Proof-of-Principle Clinical Trials
  • Stand Up To Cancer Oversight

Efficient, quick “signal finding” clinical trials of new therapeutic combinations.

The Phillip A. Sharp Innovation In Collaboration Awards

The hallmark of the Sharp Awards process is its quick ability to spark “aha” moments. Brief proposals are reviewed during the annual SU2C Summit by a committee of senior scientists and the awards are announced at that same meeting.


We believe in big ideas. In addition to SU2C’s research portfolio, several other avenues of funding are available to researchers and scientists with a high potential to impact patient care. SU2C enables outside-the-box collaborations and supports the next generation of scientists who will shape the future of cancer research through unique awards including the Phillip A. Sharp Innovation in Collaboration Awards and the Laura Ziskin Prize.

The Laura Ziskin Prize

This prize is named for SU2C Co-founder Laura Ziskin, legendary Hollywood producer, who co-founded SU2C and lived with breast cancer for seven years before she died in 2011. The grant is shared by two scientists at different institutions. Funds are used to collaborate on high-risk, high-reward breast cancer research.

The Jim Toth Sr. Breakthrough Lung Cancer Research Award

This award is named in honor of Jim Toth Sr., who passed away from lung cancer and is intended to provide funding for highly innovative, clinically focused cancer research.

Individual Awards


SU2C’s Innovative Research Grants (IRGs) support cutting-edge cancer research that would be deemed too high-risk to pursue through traditional channels. IRGs provide significant funding to early-career scientists with novel ideas that have a strong potential to impact patient care.

  • 1 Researcher
  • Bold Idea
  • Stand Up To Cancer Oversight

Significant funding for early-career scientists for cutting-edge, novel projects that have a strong potential to impact patient care and might not receive funding through traditional channels.


Emperor Science Awards

From 2016 through 2018, the Emperor Science Award program offered high school students from across the United States the opportunity to explore careers in cancer research through a mentored scientific research project. Through annual competitions, 300 students participated in the program and received a stipend and laptop computer. This education initiative was inspired by Ken Burns Presents CANCER: THE EMPEROR OF ALL MALADIES A Film by Barak Goodman, a three-part film on the history of cancer that aired on PBS in the spring of 2015.



The power of collaboration and cooperation is at the heart of Stand Up To Cancer. SU2C works with like-minded organizations to jointly fund research projects with the aim of eliminating specific cancers. Our collaborators offer subject matter expertise on issues and concerns specific to their constituencies and patient populations. As we mobilize our scientific competencies, we work together to fulfill our shared goals and vision.

These leading cancer research organizations will inspire new collaborators; improve diagnosis of pancreatic cancer using big data; develop new treatments for pancreatic cancer; and support the next generation of pancreatic cancer investigators.


The SU2C Kate McGarrigle Fund is a new collaborative program from Stand Up To Cancer and the Kate McGarrigle Foundation that aims to provide music therapy resources to cancer patients with a passion for music, as well as much-needed funds for sarcoma research.



SU2C has a strong commitment to supporting the next generation of investigators. Through programs focused on innovation and fresh ideas such as Innovative Research Grants, Convergence Scholars, Dream Team Young Investigators and Emperor Science Awards, SU2C helps develop the careers of young scientists with a high potential for success.


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Stand Up To Cancer strongly encourages novel, collaborative, and high-impact proposals. Proposals submitted in response to Calls for Ideas (CFIs) or Request for Proposals (RFPs) are rigorously reviewed, and the most promising, exciting projects are selected by panels of expert investigators.


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