Request for Information: Seeking Input for National Cancer Institute (NCI) on Advancing Research on Fusion Oncoproteins in Childhood Cancers
Notice Number:

Key Dates

Release Date:

February 15, 2022

Response Date:
March 15, 2022

Related Announcements


Issued by

National Cancer Institute (NCI)



The National Cancer Institute (NCI) is seeking broad input and feedback from sources of expertise and interest in these oncogenic drivers of childhood cancers. This request for information (RFI) is part of a planning effort designed to recognize current research gaps, identify promising opportunities, and develop strategies to accelerate progress in developing therapeutic strategies for successfully targeting these oncogenic proteins.


Recurrent translocations are a hallmark of childhood cancer and are often pathognomonic of specific cancer types (e.g., EWS-FLI1 in Ewing Sarcoma or PAX-FOXO in alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma). These translocations generate fusion oncoproteins that target developmental programs critical for the transformation of the unique cell of origin for each cancer. Fusion oncoproteins are oncogenic drivers that are often found in cancers with few other genetic lesions.

In the spring of 2016, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) established a Blue-Ribbon Panel to assist the National Cancer Advisory Board in providing expert advice on the vision, proposed scientific goals, and implementation of the Cancer Moonshot. The Blue-Ribbon Panel Pediatric Cancer Working Group identified fusion oncoproteins as one of the priority areas poised for acceleration. In their report, the Working Group recommended enhancing our understanding of the molecular and biochemical mechanisms of transformation driven by fusion oncoproteins, developing faithful models of these pediatric cancers, identifying their key dependencies, and using this information to develop novel therapeutic approaches that target these mechanisms. To achieve these goals, the panel recommended forming a highly dynamic and collaborative network of investigators with unique perspectives and expertise in the areas of proteomics, structural biology, genomics/epigenomics, chemistry, experimental therapeutics, and disease-specific biology. In response, NCI established the Fusion Oncoproteins in Childhood Cancers (FusOnC2) Consortium, containing nine collaborating research teams each taking a comprehensive approach to understanding the biology of fusion oncoproteins in childhood cancers and using this information to inform strategies for therapeutic targeting. Over the years, there have been major advances in understanding the biological mechanisms by which these fusion oncoproteins drive cancer, but knowledge gaps remain and there are still no targeted therapies available for these devastating cancers.

Information Requested

All stakeholders with an interest in improving the outcomes of childhood cancers through the development of therapeutic strategies for targeting pediatric fusion oncoproteins are invited to provide information. Your response may mention your membership or affiliation within an industry, government, or academia.

NCI is seeking information that includes, but is not limited to, the following areas:

  • The key rate-limiting areas of knowledge that are slowing the development of novel agents targeting pediatric fusion oncoproteins and for which additional focus is needed.
  • The highest priority research areas for moving the field forward towards effective novel agents targeting pediatric fusion oncoproteins.
  • The essential proficiencies required to better understand the biology of fusion oncoproteins and make progress in identifying effective novel agents to target specific pediatric fusion oncoproteins.
  • New technologies not currently being applied in a significant manner to the study of pediatric fusion oncoproteins that may provide important leads in identifying novel ways of targeting these oncogenic drivers.
  • Translational bottlenecks and challenges for advancing promising therapeutic agents through late-stage preclinical development toward an Investigational New Drug application and clinical testing.

How to submit

All responses must be submitted to by March 15, 2022. Please include the Notice number in the subject line. Response to this RFI is voluntary. Responders are free to address any or all of the categories listed above. The submitted information will be reviewed by NIH staff. Submitted information will be considered confidential.

Please do not include any proprietary, classified, confidential, or sensitive information in your response. The NIH will use the information submitted in response to this RFI at its discretion and will not provide comments to any responder's submission. The collected information will be reviewed by NIH staff, may appear in reports, and may be shared publicly on an NIH website.

The Government reserves the right to use any non-proprietary technical information in summaries of the state of the science, and any resultant solicitation(s). The NIH may use the information gathered by this RFI to inform the development of future funding opportunity announcements.

This RFI is for information and planning purposes only and should not be construed as a solicitation or as an obligation on the part of the Federal Government, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), or individual NIH Institutes and Centers. No basis for claims against the U.S. Government shall arise as a result of a response to this request for information or from the Government’s use of such information.


Please direct all inquiries to:

Keren Witkin, Ph.D.
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Telephone: 240-276-6230