The CCM encompasses three cores to support researchers and their cancer-metabolism projects.

Metabolism Core
Andrew Lane, PhD, and Richard Higashi, PhD
Metabolic profiling requires identification and quantification of a large number of metabolites of widely differing biochemical classes from diverse biological samples, including cells, culture media, tissue and biofluids. In most cases, a biochemical mechanism is needed, in which case it is necessary that appropriate stable isotope tracers (e.g., 13C or 15N) be introduced, increasing the number of analytes to be quantified by an order of magnitude or more. The core’s goal is to provide services for wide coverage of metabolites, with isotopomer and isotopologue analysis, as efficiently as possible.

This core focuses leverages UK’s existing Center for Environmental and System Biology and Resource Center for Stable Isotope-Resolved Metabolomics  metabolomics instrumentations for experiments. The CCM makes use of two major analytical platforms, namely, high-resolution NMR and high-resolution mass spectrometry, with or without chromatography. Metabolism Core leaders consult on analytical methods and experimental design and provide standardized methods for particular problems. Additionally, core personnel develop new techniques to address issues of identification and quantification of “unknowns” that appear to be biologically important and relevant to the focus of CCM investigators. Drs. Lane and Higashi assist CCM investigators with experimental design, sample preparation, instrumentation setting and biochemical interpretation of the raw data from NMR and mass spectroscopy.

Imaging Core
Jianhang Jia, PhD
Because cancer research follows disease progression from tumor initiation to progression and metastasis, high-end imaging capabilities at specific stages are critically important to the CCM. The Imaging Core provides access to sophisticated and advanced imaging equipment beyond the capabilities of individual laboratories to acquire and operate themselves.

Visualization and quantification of target molecules and their effects on cellular structure and function depend on the availability of an array of imaging systems. The Imaging Core provides key instrumentation and expertise via the following imaging systems:

  • Olympus FV1000 laser scanning confocal microscope.
  • Nikon Ti-E fully automated inverted microscope system.
  • Nikon eclipse Ti-E with TIRF system.
  • Nikon biostation IM long-term time lapse live cell imaging system.
  • GFP/RFP panoramic imaging system.
  • Xenogen IVIS 50 imaging system.
  • Xenogen IVIS spectrum imaging system.
  • Aperio ScanScope XT high-throughput digital slide scanner system (in partnership with the Center on Aging Pathology Core).

Administrative Core
Nathan Vanderford, PhD
The Administrative Core facilitates and enhances the scientific productivity of the CCM’s faculty (early-stage and pilot project leaders) by delivering coordinated administrative services across scientific projects and cores. The Administrative Core coordinates all CCM operations, promoting an integrated research and research support framework that promotes synergy, efficiency, effectiveness and accountability while maximizing mulitdisciplinary interactions and optimizing core support.

The Administrative Core coordinates and implements all administrative activities of the CCM: daily center activities; program communications, fiscal processes, meeting organization, and advisory committee input; interactions among projects and cores; the CCM pilot project program; and program and project evaluation efforts.