Cancer Causes & Control

, Volume 17, Issue 3, pp 229–237

Opportunities and Barriers in the Age of Team Science: Strategies for Success

  • Thomas A. Sellers
  • Neil Caporaso
  • Stan Lapidus
  • Gloria M. Petersen
  • Jeff Trent
Review Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10552-005-0546-5

Cite this article as:
Sellers, T.A., Caporaso, N., Lapidus, S. et al. Cancer Causes Control (2006) 17: 229. doi:10.1007/s10552-005-0546-5



To provide the voice of experience to investigators contemplating engagement in the realm of “team science”.


Leaders were brought together from academia, government, and industry to share perspectives and insights based on real-life experiences. A panel discussion was held at the 2005 annual meeting of the American Association of Cancer Research. This article summarizes that forum.


The panel focused on eight specific topics that were determined in advance to be the most important: the main justification for team science, funding team science, pre-arranged versus assigned partnerships, the role of novel technology with industrial partners, recognition for efforts and contribution in team science, budgets, keys to success when bridging disciplines and cultures, and balancing goals between academia and business. Although there were some differences of opinion, there were also a number of areas of agreement. Many practical suggestions were provided on how to succeed in the age of team science.

Principal conclusion

The nature of scientific discovery in cancer research is increasingly requiring team science. Understanding the perspectives of academia, government, and business in this new world order is essential to successful navigation and, ultimately, major accomplishment in the effort to defeat the disease.


BiotechnologyNeoplasms Interdisciplinary communicationEpidemiologic studies

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas A. Sellers
    • 1
  • Neil Caporaso
    • 2
  • Stan Lapidus
    • 3
  • Gloria M. Petersen
    • 4
  • Jeff Trent
    • 5
  1. 1.Division of Cancer Prevention and ControlH. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research InstituteTampaUSA
  2. 2.National Cancer InstituteBethesdaUSA
  3. 3.Helicos BiosciencesCambridgeUSA
  4. 4.Department of Health Sciences Research Mayo Clinic College of MedicineRochesterUSA
  5. 5.Translational Genomics Research InstitutePhoenixUSA