Research Programs At the heart of the Cancer Center are its research programs. Scientists from many academic backgrounds bring their unique expertise, perspectives and technologies to gather to collaborate on specific aspects of the cancer problem. There are five established AECC programs: The Tumor Microenvironment and Metastasis Program which brings together advanced in in vivo imaging technologies and innovative mouse models focused on breast cancer, with recent extension to other neoplasms, and translation into diagnostic, correlative and therapeutic studies in humans. The Stem Cells, Differentiation and Cancer Program encompasses three interrelated themes - stem cell biology, hematological malignancies, and a component focused on basic investigations on epigenetics/ transcription mechanisms and chromatin biology. The Experimental Therapeutics Program is the home for the conduct of all clinical therapeutic trials, and the translation of basic discoveries into investigator-initiated clinical initiatives, at AECC. The program is also the focal point for the development of small molecule inhibitors, and novel immuno-therapeutics, for the treatment of cancer. The Cancer Epidemiology, Prevention and Control Program, evolved from the prior Cancer Epidemiology Program, reflecting the expanded scope of population-based research that encompasses infectious, metabolic, endocrine, obesity-related and genetic/epigenetic causes of cancer and their prevention and control. The Biology of Colon Cancer Program focuses on the convergence of dietary and genetic factors, along with the role of aging, in the pathogenesis of colorectal cancer using mouse models of human cancer now encompassing studies on intestinal stem cells, the microbiome and the villus niche with the objective of translating preclinical findings into prevention strategies.