Skip navigation links

Aug. 29, 2022

Henry Ford Health + MSU Health Sciences funds five cancer research grants

Funding helps to advance cancer medicine, combat health disparities

Henry Ford Health + Michigan State University Health Sciences announced its funding of five cancer research grants of up to $100,000 each. These five grants follow an initial wave of funding from the partnership, in which 18 pilot grants of up to $25,000 each were funded in May 2022.

“We are proud to support the groundbreaking work of our dedicated researchers who are helping to advance the field of cancer medicine, reduce healthcare disparities and improve outcomes for patients with cancer,” said Ben Movsas, chair of the Health Sciences Cancer Committee and medical director of Henry Ford Cancer. “These highly impactful research initiatives, 40 percent of which directly address cancer disparities, will help us gain critical insights into some of the most challenging issues facing the cancer community today, which in turn will benefit patients and make a difference in many lives.”

In total, researchers at Henry Ford and Michigan State University submitted 26 integration grant proposals for this latest wave of funding. Each research grant has a principal investigator from Henry Ford Health, a principal investigator from MSU and additional key personnel from both organizations.

“The spirit of collaboration that exists among the researchers at our world-class institutions is an essential part of our shared vision to reimagine healthcare and discover scientific breakthroughs that will serve as catalysts for change,” said Jeff MacKeigan, Health Sciences Cancer Committee member and assistant dean in research of the MSU College of Human Medicine. “Health inequities and disparities have created gaps in cancer outcomes that have long afflicted patients in both urban and rural communities. These research initiatives funded through our partnership with Henry Ford will play an important role in fighting the health disparities that plague our most vulnerable communities.”

The five grants selected for the latest wave of funding are:

  • An Adaptive Pre-Treatment Stratification Model for Clinical Decision Support of Patients with Head & Neck Cancers
    • Goal: To study cancer health disparities focusing on diverse patient cohorts with oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma
    • Principal Investigators: Adam Alessio (MSU), Indrin Chetty (Henry Ford)
  • Identify Mechanisms Underlying Sex Disparities in Liver Carcinoma Development
    • Goal: To analyze sex differences in hepatocellular carcinoma.
    • Principal Investigators: Qing-Sheng Mi (Henry Ford), Hua Xiao (MSU)
  • Enhancing the Therapeutic Gain of Radiation Therapy for Brain Cancer by Reducing Cellular Senescence
    • Goal: To demonstrate that radiation-induced senescent cells are a source of late injury.
      Principal Investigators: Stephen Brown (Henry Ford), Marcia Gordon (MSU)
  • New Nanotherapy for Brain Tumors based on miR-10b Inhibition
    • Goal: To investigate novel nanotherapy aimed at improving outcomes in glioblastoma
    • Principal Investigators: Anna Moore (MSU),  Ana deCarvalho (Henry Ford)
  • Development of Sialyl Lewis A Targeting Monoclonal Antibodies Toward The Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer
    • Goal: To develop new antibodies that target the most common biomarker for pancreatic cancer
    • Principal Investigators: Howard Crawford (Henry Ford), Xuefei Huang (MSU)

The Henry Ford Health + Michigan State University Health Sciences partnership launched in January 2021 with the bold purpose of advancing a new standard of healthcare by reimagining how we think about, innovate and deliver health and wellness. As partners, Henry Ford Health and Michigan State University are investing in emerging cancer research; advancing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Justice; working toward the opening of a MSU Health Education Campus at Henry Ford Hospital; creating a unified research community; and empowering health plan customers with great choices thanks to Health Alliance Plan and MSU Health Care joining forces.

To learn more about the Henry Ford Health + Michigan State University Health Sciences partnership, visit

By: Nicole Szymczak

Media Contacts