Jefferson Names Kimmel Cancer Center
Thomas Jefferson University recently named its world-renowned
cancer center and cancer research institute the Kimmel Cancer Center of
Jefferson Medical College and the Kimmel Cancer Institute, in recognition
of a $10-million grant from The Sidney Kimmel Foundation.
The gift from the foundation established by Philadelphia entrepreneur and
philanthropist Sidney Kimmel will support ongoing research programs as well
as create an endowment fund to ensure the continuation of Jefferson's pioneering
cancer research. Jefferson's cancer center has earned international recognition
for its basic research discoveries and their rapid translation into cancer
treatments for patients.
"I am thrilled by this pacesetting commitment to help Jefferson fight
the war against cancer by enhancing our ability to carry out vital research,"
said University president Paul C. Brucker, MD.
Mr. Kimmel, founder and chairman of the Jones Apparel Group, a leading women's
clothing manufacturer, is a longtime supporter of medical causes in the
Delaware Valley. He is a board member of Rowan House, a transitional residence
for formerly homeless women and children, and helped initiate "Friends
Like Me," a support program for women with breast cancer. A generous
benefactor of the arts in Philadelphia, Mr. Kimmel is a board member of
the Philadelphia Orchestra.
"Our scientists need as much support as possible to zero in on the
causes of cancer and develop new treatments," said Joseph S. Gonnella,
MD, senior vice president for academic affairs and dean of Jefferson Medical
College. "Sidney Kimmel's generosity and commitment to Jefferson give
us great momentum in our efforts to halt this devastating disease."
A grant of such major proportions enables the University to move forward
with its groundbreaking cancer research projects and also supports the cancer
center's operation. Established in 1991, the cancer center at Jefferson
is considered one of the leading clinical and basic cancer research institutions
in the nation. The National Cancer Institute recently recognized it as one
of only 54 officially designated cancer centers in the United States.
"There's much more to be done," said Carlo M. Croce, MD, director
of the Kimmel Cancer Center of Jefferson Medical College. "This grant
allows us not only to sustain our progress, but also to probe new approaches
and develop even more expertise in defeating cancer."
The geneticists, molecular and structural biologists, virologists, immunologists
and biochemists at the newly dedicated Kimmel Cancer Center rank among the
world's leading cancer investigators. Working with their colleagues at Jefferson
Medical College and clinicians at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital,
Inc., they are developing a formidable multidisciplinary program against
malignant disease in all its variants. Already, they have isolated genes
involved in leukemias and lymphomas and in digestive-tract malignancies.
Jefferson researchers have also been successful in creating a vaccine to
combat melanoma, an especially deadly form of skin cancer. These breakthroughs,
in concert with early detection and innovative treatment, are saving lives.