Falk Trust Awards Additional $2,025,000 to Advance Cancer Research at Jefferson's Kimmel Cancer Center
With a recent $2,025,000 grant to Thomas Jefferson University, the Dr. Ralph and Marian Falk Medical Research Trust has once again renewed its support of cancer research conducted by internationally renowned geneticist Carlo M. Croce, MD.
Dr. Croce is Director of the Kimmel Cancer Center, as well as Professor and Chair of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Jefferson Medical College (JMC).
"This attests to the extraordinary dedication of Dr. Croce and his team as well as to the leadership of the Kimmel Cancer Center," said Paul C. Brucker, MD, President of the University. "We are very grateful for the Falk Trust's steadfast generosity, which enables Jefferson researchers such as Dr. Croce to lead the way toward effective treatment of complex, life-threatening conditions."
This grant builds on the Trust's previous awards of $1.5 million and $1.8 million, which allowed Dr. Croce and his team to isolate and name the critical ALL1 gene and expand their research from the genetic causes of leukemia and lymphoma to the other types of cancer that this gene may influence. The renewed support will enable Dr. Croce to continue to explore the mystery of the ALL1 gene and how it may relate to other forms of cancer including breast, lung, prostate and colorectal.
"As our research progresses, we intend to identify and characterize all the gene targets of ALL1 and all its protein partners," said Dr. Croce. "This will enable us to identify novel drugs and innovative therapeutic approaches that can benefit cancer patients."
Among his many accomplishments, Dr. Croce has explained the roles of chromosome translocations and inversions in human leukemias and lymphomas and identified several genes involved in blood malignancies. A genetic profile of these genes is already being used in clinical settings to detect residual disease in patients following treatment. He is also credited with describing the molecular-genetic events that result in Burkitt's lymphoma, follicular lymphoma, and lymphomas in AIDS patients.
Ralph Falk, MD, a 1907 graduate of JMC whose pioneering research rendered intravenous therapy safe and practical, died in 1960. He and his wife, Marian, who died in 1990, were devoted supporters of Jefferson and focused their philanthropy on assisting medical research. The Falk Trust continues this tradition.
"The loyalty of alumni and their families is vital to the success of our medical college, and we are very proud that the Falk Trust continues to invest in our future," said Joseph S. Gonnella, MD, Dean of JMC.
Visit the Jefferson 2000 Fund website at http://www.tju.edu/jeffgiving/