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Edith Mitchell Named Member of Blue Ribbon Panel to Inform Scientific Direction of the Cancer Moonshot Initiative


(PHILADELPHIA) - Edith Mitchell, M.D., Professor of Medical Oncology and researcher at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University was appointed one of 28 cancer experts that will provide input on Vice President Joe Biden’s Cancer Moonshot Initiative.

“To be successful, we must hear a broad range of perspectives to take full advantage of the exceptional current opportunities in cancer research,” said National Cancer Institute (NCI) Acting Director Douglas Lowy, M.D., in an NCI release.

Members of the Blue Ribbon Panel hail from a wide spectrum of disciplines including biology, immunology, genomics, diagnostics, bioinformatics, and cancer prevention. They also include experts in clinical trials, cancer health disparities as well as members of cancer advocacy groups and pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.

Dr. Mitchell, a practicing clinician focusing on colorectal and triple negative breast cancers, is widely known for her work in fighting cancer disparities. She is the current president of the National Medical Association, and was named to EBONY Magazine’s Power 100 List in 2015. At Jefferson, Dr. Mitchell serves as the Director of the Center to Eliminate Cancer Disparities and Associate Director for Diversity Affairs at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center.

“It is well recognized that cancer is a leading cause of death and its incidence expected to increase in future decades,” says Dr. Mitchell. “Minorities, especially African Americans, suffer a disproportionate share of the burden of cancer in the United States with higher incidence rates and poorer survival when compared to other racial and ethnic populations.  Therefore, “The Moonshot Initiative” may define prevention, diagnostic, and interventional strategies leading to cancer healthcare equity.  I am most privileged to be named among the 28-member panel of distinguished experts and look forward to the impact of “Moonshot” on cancer outcomes.”

“Dr. Mitchell is not only remarkably accomplished and an outstanding clinician, but is driven by a passion for improving the lives of cancer patients in Philadelphia and beyond,” says Karen Knudsen, Ph.D., Director of the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University. “Dr. Mitchell is a longstanding leader— both within our own NCI-designated Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center as well as nationally— in efforts to eliminate health disparities and promote equality in the health care system.  Her impact has been remarkable, and Dr. Mitchell is a hero to us all— from brigadier general to leading the charge against cancer, the Vice President could not have chosen a more formidable partner in the war on cancer.”

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Edyta Zielinska
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