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The Career Development Award (CDA) provides research funding to clinical investigators, who have received their initial faculty appointment, as they work to establish an independent clinical cancer research program. This research must have a patient-oriented focus, including a clinical research study and/or translational research involving human subjects. Proposals with a predominant focus on in vitro or animal studies (even if clinically relevant) are not allowed.

The CDA is a three-year grant totaling $200,000 to pay for personnel and/or research expenses, and travel to attend the Conquer Cancer Grants and Awards Ceremony at the ASCO Annual Meeting. The number of CDA grants in each funding cycle is not predetermined by Conquer Cancer.  Awards are given based on individual merit and availability of funds.

Conquer Cancer encourages applications in all areas.


Applicants must meet the following criteria to qualify for the Career Development Award:

  • Be a physician (MD, DO of international equivalent) working in any country.
  • Be in the first to third year of a full-time primary faculty appointment in a clinical department at an academic medical institution at the time of grant submission. Faculty appointment may begin with the entry-level faculty position within the applicant’s institution (i.e., Instructor/Lecturer, Assistant Professor, Assistant Member). 
  • Have a valid, active medical license in the country where the research will be conducted at the time of application.
  • Have completed productive postdoctoral research and demonstrated the ability to undertake independent investigator-initiated clinical research.
  • Be an ASCO Member or have submitted a membership application with the grant application. To apply for membership, or to renew your existing membership, please visit
  • Be able to commit more than 50% of full-time effort in research (applies to total research, not just the proposed project) during the award period.
  • Have a mentor from the sponsoring institution who must provide a letter of support. If the mentor is not an ASCO Member, a supporting letter from an ASCO Member from the sponsoring institution must be included.
  • Eligible physicians are allowed to hold only one grant from Conquer Cancer at a time.
  • Applicants who hold concurrent career development awards (e.g., K23, K08, or any other type of career development award) must notify Conquer Cancer before they submit an application. Past recipients of training fellowships (e.g., Young Investigator Award or an F32 grant) are eligible. Applicants with institutional KL2/K12 grants are eligible to apply, but must notify Conquer Cancer if they are currently funded by such an award. If there are questions regarding eligibility associated with previous and current grants received, applicants are encouraged to send an email to for clarification.
  • Be up-to-date and in compliance with all requirements (e.g., progress reports, final reports, budget summaries, IRB approvals, etc.) of any past grants received from Conquer Cancer.

Application Instructions

All applications must be submitted in accordance to the requirements and instructions of the Career Development Award Request for Proposals (RFP). All application materials must be in English and must be submitted through the Grants Portal. Paper applications or applications sent by e-mail or fax will not be accepted.

Closing Soon: Apply by September 25, 2019.

Application Deadlines

Application Open: 

July 1, 2019

Letter of Intent Deadline: 

Application Deadline: 

September 25, 2019

Award Term: 

July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2023


The Career Development Award was first awarded in 1992. As of 2019, Conquer Cancer has awarded 283 clinical investigators across the globe totaling more than $52 million.

2019 Career Development Award Recipients

Tarah Ballinger, MD
Indiana University
Good vibrations: a novel mechanical intervention to understand and preserve musculoskeletal health in early stage breast cancer
Yasir Elamin, MD
The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
Optimizing targeted therapy for HER2 mutant non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and other solid tumors
Deborah Forst, MD
Massachusetts General Hospital
Psychological Intervention for Caregivers of Patients with Malignant Gliomas
Katie Greenzang, MD
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Enhancing Information, Preparation, and Shared Decision-Making about Long-term Outcomes of Pediatric Cancer and its Treatment
Glenn Hanna, MD
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Circulating human papillomavirus (HPV) cell-free (cf)DNA in head and neck cancer
Matthew Ingham, MD
Columbia University Medical Center
A Phase II Study of the PARP Inhibitor Olaparib in Combination with the DNA Damaging Agent Temozolomide for the Treatment of Advanced Uterine Leiomyosarcoma
Katarzyna Jerzak, MD
Sunnybrook Research Institute
Routine MRI screening versus symptom-directed screening for brain metastases among patients with triple negative or HER2+ metastatic breast cancer: A single-centre randomized phase II pilot study
Emily Johnston, MD, MS
The University of Alabama at Birmingham
Hospice Use at the End-of-Life in Children with Cancer
Chrisann Kyi, MD
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
A Phase I Study of ESK1-Bispecific T-cell Engager (BiTE) Antibody Targeting WT1 for the Treatment of Patients with Recurrent Ovarian Cancer
Vincent Lam, MD
The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
Cell-free DNA (cfDNA) to detect minimal residual disease, predict therapeutic response, and characterize immunogenomic evolution in early-stage NSCLC treated with neoadjuvant immunotherapy
Stephanie Lheureux, MD, PhD
University Health Network
Enhancing Immunogenicity in recurrent Endometrial Cancer by modulating Tumour microenvironment and DNA damage response
Pavlos Msaouel, MD, PhD
The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
Targeting synthetic vulnerabilities induced by stress responses in SMARCB1-deficient malignancies
Aparna Parikh, MD, MS
Massachusetts General Hospital
Systematic Liquid Biopsies to monitor treatment effect in gastrointestinal (GI) cancer patients
Eirini Pectasides, MD, PhD
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Overcoming Genomic Mechanisms of Resistance to ERBB2 Blockade in Gastroesophageal Adenocarcinoma
Enrique Soto Perez de Celis, MD
Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Medicas y Nutricion Salvador Zubiran
Accuracy of a Mobile Sensor-Based System for the Detection of Chemotherapy Toxicity in Older Adults with Cancer in a Developing Country
Sarah Taylor, MD
University of Pittsburgh
Phase IIA trial of delayed initiation of olaparib maintenance therapy in platinum sensitive recurrent ovarian cancer


The Career Development Awards are supported by:

Generous Supporters of the Women Who Conquer Cancer

Supporters of Active CDAs Awarded in Prior Years:

Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma Research Foundation
Takeda Oncology

This list reflects commitments as of April 29, 2019.

This grant receives support that may result in a report to the CMS Open Payments website under the Physician Payments Sunshine Act. The supporting companies are required to report the amount of the grant, the names of physicians who are awarded this grant, and the names of their institutions. This information may appear on the Open Payments websiteFind out more information about the Sunshine Act and CMS Open Payments program.