UCLA Researcher Wins Grant for Cancer Study

A local resident and UCLA cancer researcher recently won a prestigious national grant.

Dr. David Chang, a researcher at UCLA’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, was awarded a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the U.S. government’s highest honor for independent researchers at the beginning of their careers.

The award includes a $972,000 five-year grant from the National Institutes of Health’s Department of Health and Human Services.

“It’s one of the best things that ever happened to me,” said Chang, a resident of Calabasas and an assistant professor in the departments of medicine and of microbiology, immunology and molecular genetics at the university’s school of medicine. “It’s nice to know there are people out there who think the research is important enough to continue funding.”

Chang, 39, said the grant money will go toward investigating how cancer cells spread from their original locations to other organs. He said his research will focus on breast and prostate cancers--the types of cancer that affect the greatest number of people in the U.S.


“One of the things the Jonsson Cancer Center focuses on is recruiting the best young scientists around the country. Chang came with incredible qualifications and potential for success,” said Judith Gasson, director of the UCLA center.

Chang was one of 60 researchers honored for scientific and technological achievements at a White House ceremony earlier this month.