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Infinite Monkey Theorem Funds Summer Student Fellowship

January 1, 2018

John Tentler PhD, Madison Weber,Monica Brown, Todd Pitts PhD
This summer, two students in the Cancer Research Summer Fellowship Program funded by CU Cancer Center had more than one thing in common. Monica Brown and Madison Weber are both college undergraduates who focused their summer studies on colon cancer research. And both of their fellowships were funded by Ben Parsons, owner of The Infinite Monkey Theorem, an urban winery focused on making Colorado wines in Denver’s RiNo district, who lost his father to colon cancer in 2007.

Every summer, the ten-week program gives dozens of college undergraduates and more advanced high school students the opportunity to explore their interest in cancer research. Brown and Weber spent their time working in the labs of Todd Pitts, PhD, and John Tentler, PhD, the associate director for education at CU Cancer Center, director of the summer fellowship program, where they hoped to determine how a particular combination of cancer drugs works on colon cancer cells in the lab. Brown Combined TAK-228, which is an inhibitor of the mTOR called trametinib. Weber is combining TAK-228 with several inhibitors of diaclyglycerol kinase in order to block cancer cell metabolism. “I have devoted my life’s work and business ventures to honoring my father and those who have gone through this battle. We are proud partners of the University of Colorado Cancer Center and feel humbled to be able to assist with a fraction of their work,” Parson says.​​