Dr. Eileen White awarded NIH Challenge Grant to study the role of cellular metabolism in cancer.

Dr. Eileen White, Professor of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey-New Brunswick, and Associate Director of Basic Science at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey, has been awarded a research grant from the National Institutes of Health’s Challenge Grant Program for her proposal “Role of Tumor and Stromal Cell Metabolism in Stress Adaptation and Progression”.

Dr. White and her collaborating co-Principal Investigators, Dr. Hilary Coller and Dr. Joshua Rabinowitz, both assistant professors at Princeton University, will study the role of cellular metabolism in the development and progression of cancer. Cancer cells acquire mutations that deregulate cell growth and which also alter cellular metabolism. It has recently become apparent that this metabolic reprogramming in cancer is necessary to provide the building blocks for the macromolecular synthesis of proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids necessary to support tumor cell growth and survival. Drs. White, Coller, and Rabinowitz, through a collaborative effort between Rutgers and Princeton Universities and the Cancer Institute of New Jersey, are defining the metabolic changes in cancer and determining their impact on tumorigenesis. Importantly, these metabolic alterations distinguish tumor cells from normal cells, providing a potential “Achilles’ heel” to cancer and to the identification of novel targets for anti-cancer drug discovery. The NIH Challenge Grant Program is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, and Dr. White’s proposal is one of only a few hundred selected for funding out of thousands submitted nationally.


About Dr. Eileen White Dr. Eileen WhiteDr. White received her Bachelor of Science degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and her Ph.D. in Biology from The State University of New York—Stony Brook. Prior to joining the faculty at Rutgers, she served as a Damon Runyon Postdoctoral fellow and as a faculty member at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. There she discovered the role of viral oncogenes in the regulation of programmed cell death (apoptosis) in cancer. Dr. White continues her work defining the role and mechanisms of apoptosis regulation in cancer at Rutgers and at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey, in addition to serving as an Adjunct Professor of Surgery at RWJMS-UMDNJ. Dr. White has served on the Board of Scientific Counselors of the National Cancer Institute and other review panels for the National Institutes of Health. She is the recipient of numerous awards including a MERIT award from the National Cancer Institute, the Red Smith Award from the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation, and is a Fellow of the American Society of Microbiology. Dr. White is also a member of the Board of Directors of the American Association for Cancer Research, the Scientific Review Boards for the Starr Cancer Consortium, the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation, and the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas. She serves on numerous editorial boards, is an investigator on cancer clinical trials, and is a consultant to the pharmaceutical industry for anti-cancer drug discovery.

In fiscal year 2010, more than $433.9 million of research at Rutgers was sponsored by the federal government, state government, corporations, and foundations, providing research experiences for undergraduates, support for graduate assistants and postdoctoral researchers, and bringing state–of–the–art equipment and facilities to our campuses.