The Genetics of Pancreatic Cancer
-- You can help!
The efforts at Johns Hopkins to advance our understanding of pancreas cancer and to develop new techniques to diagnose and treat this dreaded disease are proceeding at a record pace, we have more leads than we have resources to pursue them. Financial support is needed to continue these efforts. For example, initial start-up salaries and equipment for the Kern laboratory were enabled by a private fund dedicated to the sponsorship of young investigators (the James S. McDonnell Foundation). The fellowships of Dr. Schutte (discoverer of the link between pancreas cancer and the BRCA2 gene and Dr. Hahn (discoverer of the DPC4 gene) were each initiated by special temporary fellowships before federal funding could be obtained to study these genes. The National Familial Pancreas Tumor Registry receives half of its funding from federal sources; the remainder of our operating budget comes from private donations.
What form can a donation take? Some people have given direct donations, some have left a donation as a bequeath, and some have asked that donations be sent in lieu of flowers. Each donation has helped us explore new avenues of research, and each is a poignant reminder of the human cost of this disease. Importantly, this private giving has provided us with the opportunity to make real advances in our understanding of pancreas cancer. Those of you wishing to support pancreas cancer research at Johns Hopkins may do so by sending your tax-deductible contribution payable to The Johns Hopkins University to:
If you have any questions about how you can help support pancreas cancer research, do not hesitate to give us a call: 410-955-9791.
Individuals interested in making more substantial donations to support pancreas cancer research may wish to consider a permanent named endowment. These gifts not only honor and remember a loved one, but they also help in the battle against pancreas cancer. Named endowments can be established at a number of different levels, and the possibilities include a named research endowment, a named research or clinical fellowship, and a named chair (a Professorship) for pancreas cancer research.
If you wish to learn more about how to create a named endowment for pancreas cancer research, please call either Dr. Hruban at 410-955-9791.
Participation takes may forms when creativity is cultivated. One hurdle for pancreatic cancer research is the relative invisibility of the disease in the public mind. In Maryland, in Ohio, and in a growing number of other states, governors have dedicated August as Pancreas Cancer Awareness Month. A similar effort is being launched to have the President declare November as a National Month for Pancreas Cancer Awareness.
"An Evening with the Stars", a fund-raiser for pancreas cancer research at Johns Hopkins, was held in Beverly Hills. This event raised $100,000 to start up a laboratory at Johns Hopkins dedicated to the development and testing of screening tests for pancreatic cancer.
More news about these events is available here.
Prostate cancer made the cover of TIME and other magazines in recent years. This was cause for celebration as a public relations victory, but all forms of cancer need special attention if these battles are to be won.