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Research on cancer biology and treatment receives new support

Harvard Medical School has received $90 million from Ludwig Cancer Research to establish a Ludwig Center to drive collaborative scientific inquiry and discovery. The center will be codirected by Joan Brugge, the Louise Foote Pfeiffer Professor of Cell Biology and chair of the HMS Department of Cell Biology, and George D. Demetri, an HMS professor of medicine and the Quick Family Chair of Medical Oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

“This gift provides a momentous opportunity for the entire HMS community to glean new insights into the basic biology of cancer as well as to accelerate the translation of basic research to improve patient outcomes,” says Jeffrey S. Flier, HMS dean. The gift, made on behalf of the late Daniel K. Ludwig, founder of Ludwig Cancer Research, reflects a portion of a $540 million gift divided equally among the six Ludwig Centers at U.S. academic institutions: HMS, Johns Hopkins, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, MIT, Stanford University, and the University of Chicago.

Adds Flier, “We recognize that Daniel and Virginia Ludwig were powerful advocates for excellence in cancer research. We are grateful to them for their generosity and their vision, and are committed to honoring their legacy by advancing the fight against cancer.”

This is the second major commitment Harvard has received from Ludwig Cancer Research to support a Ludwig Center that draws on the expertise of faculty members across the HMS Quad as well as at its affiliated institutions, including those faculty who collaborate through 18 disease- and discipline-based research programs as part of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center. These gifts will allow Harvard’s cancer research community to build upon research activities, attract leading biomedical and cancer researchers, speed the pace of discovery, pursue findings through subsequent stages of research, and expand collaborations throughout the United States and internationally.

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