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Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy announces $1.5 million in national grants to young investigators

Margaret Cianci, Executive Director for the Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy, Inc. (ACGT), a national foundation based in Stamford, Connecticut, announced today the award of national grants to three Young Investigators at major research institutions, totaling $1.5 million over three years, for separate cancer gene therapy research projects relating to neuroblastoma, prostate and ovarian cancers.

The recipients are Dr. Andrew Davidoff at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, Tennessee for the development of anti-angiogenic gene therapy for neuroblastoma, a deadly form of childhood cancer; Dr. Thomas Griffith at the University of Iowa for development and testing of an immunotherapy/vaccine therapy, Ad-5 TRAIL for future clinical trials in patients with prostate cancer; and Dr. Jeffrey Bartlett, at Children's Research Institute in Columbus, Ohio, for tumor targeting/vector development, creating a specific gene therapy delivery vehicle for patients with ovarian cancer.

Gene therapy is a revolutionary new form of treatment. It has emerged in recent years with the remarkable potential not only to deliver a cure for many types of cancers, but also to improve the quality of life with reduced side effects for patients undergoing treatments.

Every year, over a half million people die from cancer and another million are diagnosed with some form of the disease. Conventional therapies, including chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation, while having produced a measure of success with some cancers, have their limitations and can generate adverse side effects for patients.

The research efforts of these Young Investigators, pursuing newly emerging strategies within the cancer gene therapy field, represent significant potential applications for all forms of cancer and an improved quality of life for those being treated for cancer.

1.Anti-Angiogenesis:
Andrew Davidoff, M.D.
St. Jude Children's Research H
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Contact: Margaret Cianci
info@acgtfoundation.org
203-358-8000
Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy
3-Mar-2003


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