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Comprehensive Cancer Prevention Research Initiative Under Way at Fox Chase Cancer Center

PHILADELPHIA (May 14, 1998) -- Fox Chase Cancer Center has launched a major $38 million initiative, the Research Institute for Cancer Prevention, that will focus on developing effective methods of preventing cancer. Based on a strong existing foundation and tradition of cancer prevention and early detection research, Fox Chase is adding 11 new research programs and state-of-the-art laboratories that will be housed in a new five-level, 120,000-square-foot Prevention Pavilion.

"This will be the first research program in the nation to concentrate on a comprehensive approach to cancer prevention," said Fox Chase president Dr. Robert C. Young. "By integrating existing and new programs in molecular genetics, genetic epidemiology, risk assessment, behavioral medicine, chemoprevention and bioinformatics, we will have the scientific building blocks to help reach what may be the ultimate goal in cancer care."

As an advanced research center, the Research Institute for Cancer Prevention will allow laboratory scientists to integrate their work with a growing network of prevention-related clinical trials and risk-assessment programs. In terms of clinical care, the Prevention Pavilion will provide a dedicated setting for healthy people who need specialized care to avoid cancer, including risk profiles, genetic testing, access to clinical trials, family counseling and diagnostic screening.

Leading the fund-raising campaign is Fox Chase board member William J. Avery, chairman and chief executive officer of Crown Cork & Seal Company, Inc. So far, more than $25 million- nearly two-thirds--of the $38 million has been raised or pledged from corporate, foundation and individual gifts.

The Center recently received a $1.5 million grant from the Kresge Foundation of Troy, Michigan, to aid in the construction. The terms of the grant require the Center to raise another $4.5 million in new gifts and grants for the Prevention Pavilion.

The prevention program and new laboratory space are expected to add more than 100 members to Fox Chase's scientific and medical staff as well as additional support staff. Of those positions, six will be for endowed senior faculty chairs and three for endowed postdoctoral fellowships.

Building the Prevention Pavilion will mean additional construction jobs. Once the new programs are established, they are expected to generate about $6 million annually in research grants. The economic impact of all new staff salaries will add about $7 million a year to the local economy.

Fox Chase has been a pioneer in cancer prevention research since Dr. Baruch S. Blumberg's 1967 identification of the hepatitis B virus, which can lead to primary liver cancer. Blumberg received the 1976 Nobel Prize in medicine for this discovery. His Fox Chase laboratory helped develop the hepatitis B vaccine--the first vaccine capable of preventing a human cancer.

Fox Chase Cancer Center is one of 32 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the nation. The Center's activities include basic and clinical research, prevention, detection and treatment of cancer and community outreach programs.

Fox Chase Cancer Center, part of the Temple University Health System, is one of the leading cancer research and treatment centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as one of the nation’s first cancer hospitals, Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. Fox Chase researchers have won the highest awards in their fields, including two Nobel Prizes. Fox Chase physicians are also routinely recognized in national rankings, and the Center’s nursing program has received the Magnet recognition for excellence four consecutive times. Today, Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach.  For more information, call 1-888-FOX CHASE or (1-888-369-2427).

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