The Richard L. Plotkin

Acute Myeloid Leukemia Young Investigator Award

This award is established in honor and memory of Richard L. Plotkin, Co-Founder and Vice Chairman of the Max Cure Foundation, a 501(c)(3) childhood cancer nonprofit foundation. He was an extraordinary father, grandfather, husband and friend. He was a member of one of the oldest and most prestigious law firms in New Jersey for over forty years and frequently recognized for his commercial litigation skill. Following the diagnosis of his grandson Max Plotkin with B-Cell Lymphoma in 2007, Richard left the practice of law to focus his attention and passion in the fight against childhood cancer by founding The Max Cure Foundation with Max’s parents, David and Annemarie. He was a tireless and vigorous advocate for children and families facing the diagnosis of cancer. Sadly, Richard passed away in September 2019 after being diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia in January 2019. This award will serve as a bridge between Richard’s legacy and the future gains to be made against AML.

Specifics of Award

The Award provides funding to promising investigators focused upon acute myeloid leukemia in pediatric and young adult patients to encourage and promote quality research in clinical oncology. The purpose of this grant is to fund promising young investigators during the transition from a fellowship program to a faculty appointment and to provide support as they embark upon a career of discovery and achievement towards the aim of improving the lives of children and young adults diagnosed with AML. The Award is a one-year grant totaling $25,000. Projects should be focused on pediatric oncology drug development/clinical translation in the field of acute myeloid leukemia. Basic research studies leading to drug discovery and pre-clinical testing of new therapies that have a high potential to translate into the clinical trials and approval will be given priority. Funding decisions will be based on scientific merit and an assessment of the ability of the research to translate into clinical application.

All grant applications/proposals shall be postmarked and received no later than March 31, 2020. The award recipient will be notified and presented with the grant by April 30, 2020.

Assessment Criteria

  • The applicant’s previous productivity, research environment, and ongoing mentorship during the transition to independence.
  • Extent to which the proposed research has potential for pediatric drug development/clinical trial initiation and the overall potential impact upon the patient population. Basic research studies leading to target and drug discovery and pre-clinical testing of new therapies that have a high potential to translate into the clinic will be given priority.
  • Proposals will be reviewed for scientific merit by the Max Cure Foundation’s Scientific Review Committee and members of the Plotkin Family.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Applicants must be MD (or equivalent), PhD, MD-PhD with no more than six years beyond completion of post-doctoral training.
  • Applicants must have an academic appointment at a medical institution in the United States at the Instructor or Assistant Professor level; transition plan for an appropriate position anticipated during the funding period or within twelve months after receipt of the award must be verified by a Letter of Institutional Support.
  • Applicants may not hold an independent NIH “R” or “P” award at the time of application.
  • Applicants may concurrently have an NIH “K” award.
  • Applicants must have an academic mentor identified and the application must include a letter/statement from the mentor documenting his/her involvement in the proposed research.

How to Apply

Applicants, or their mentor, may submit their CV, brief statement of research proposal, brief transition plan and letter(s) of recommendation(s), including from the applicant’s mentor outlined herein.

All grant applications/proposals shall be postmarked and received no later than March 31, 2020. The award recipient will be notified and presented with the grant by April 30, 2020.

Submissions for consideration by the grant committee shall be emailed to the Max Cure Foundation Executive Director Jonathan Agin at jonathan@maxcure.org.