Dr. Joseph Scarpa Awarded FAER Grant

Dr. Joseph Scarpa, an instructor in anesthesiology at Weill Cornell Medicine, is the recipient of a Mentored Research Training Grant from the Foundation for Anesthesia Education and Research (FAER) for his proposal, “The Response of Circulating Tumor Cells to Surgical Resection and Intraoperative Ketamine in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer.”

The two-year, $250,000 grant will fund Dr. Scarpa’s research which aims to utilize new technologies to capture cancer cells from blood and determine how surgery and anesthesia increase the likelihood of cancer recurring after resection.

“It’s really exciting because it gives us a way to measure the patient’s tumor from a regular blood draw,” Dr. Scarpa explained.  "Now we can track microscopic tumor left behind after tumor resection and see how surgical stress and anesthetic drugs change their molecular profiles."

Dr. Scarpa is a Van Poznak Anesthesiology Research Scholar in the Department of Anesthesiology. His faculty mentors include Olivier Elemento, PhD, director of the Englander Institute for Precision Medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine; Joshua Mincer, MD, PhD,  an associate attending professor of anesthesiology and researcher at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center; and Peter Goldstein, MD, a professor of anesthesiology at Weill Cornell Medicine.

Dr. Scarpa hopes that this technology can be used in the future to personalize surgery and anesthesia to a patient’s underlying cancer biology.

Read more about the 2024 FAER grants and recipients.

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