November 2, 2021:

Since its founding in 2013, the Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium (Big Ten CRC) has experienced steady growth, guided by a Steering Committee whose members consist of one representative from each institution. Collectively, the group meets regularly to oversee the activities of the consortium and to decide matters of policy. Each year, the committee appoints a chair and a vice-chair.

Peter G. Shields, MD (pictured left), of The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC-James) currently serves as Steering Committee chair, and Thomas G. Sors, PhD, of the Purdue Institute of Inflammation, Immunology and Infectious Disease (PI4D), is vice-chair, representing the Purdue University Center for Cancer Research.

Dr. Shields, a thoracic medical oncologist, oversees the scientific research programs and research infrastructure of the OSUCCC-James, which includes more than 330 cancer researchers and their teams from 11 of Ohio State’s 15 colleges. Through his experience, Dr. Shields understands the importance of multi-institution collaboration to meet the needs of cancer patients as well as investigators, many of whom are early in their careers.

“We are an extremely high-volume cancer center; we put more than 1,200 patients a year on clinical trials,” Dr. Shields said. “The opportunity to collaborate with other Big Ten universities is very exciting; it offers our junior investigators a chance to lead research studies.”

Learn more about Dr. Shields.

Dr. Sors is a life scientist with expertise in biotechnology and biomedical engineering. Through his work with PI4D and the Indiana Clinical and Translational Science Institute, he facilitates translational collaboration between research teams and core facilities at Purdue University. He also serves as co-chair of the Big Ten CRC’s Correlative Sciences Clinical Trial Working Group.

“I’m excited to continue working with my Steering Committee colleagues, who are motivated to streamline the science and efficiency by which our institutions work together,” Dr. Sors said. “The team of oncologists, clinical investigators, and research scientists across the Big Ten CRC creates a unique synergy that makes the Big Ten CRC an attractive network to our external collaborators.”

Learn more about Dr. Sors.

Big Ten CRC Chief Scientific Officer Monika Joshi, MD, MRCP, who serves as an associate professor of medicine at Penn State College of Medicine and a medical oncologist at Penn State Cancer Institute, notes one of the strengths of the consortium is its ability to tap in to the collective expertise of member institutions across a wide range of disciplines.

“The consortium welcomes the expertise of different disease groups and areas of cancer research – not just clinicians, but basic scientists and epidemiological colleagues from public health sciences. This contributes to the growth of our diverse portfolio of clinical trials as well as the rich correlative research that we can conduct to provide further context into our discoveries,” she said. “The leadership of Drs. Shields and Sors reflects the extraordinary talent that is found across our working groups and within the Steering Committee.”


About the Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium: The Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium was created in 2013 to transform the conduct of cancer research through collaborative, hypothesis-driven, highly translational oncology trials that leverage the scientific and clinical expertise of Big Ten universities. The goal of the Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium is to create a unique team-research culture to drive science rapidly from ideas to new approaches to cancer treatment. Within this innovative environment, today’s research leaders collaborate with and mentor the research leaders of tomorrow with the unified goal of improving the lives of all patients with cancer.

About the Big Ten Conference: The Big Ten Conference is an association of world-class universities whose member institutions share a common mission of research, graduate, professional and undergraduate teaching and public service. Founded in 1896, the Big Ten has sustained a comprehensive set of shared practices and policies that enforce the priority of academics in the lives of students competing in intercollegiate athletics and emphasize the values of integrity, fairness and competitiveness. The broad-based programs of the 14 Big Ten institutions will provide over $200 million in direct financial support to more than 9,800 students for more than 11,000 participation opportunities on 350 teams in 42 different sports. The Big Ten sponsors 28 official conference sports, 14 for men and 14 for women, including the addition of men’s ice hockey and men’s and women’s lacrosse since 2013. For more information, visit