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NIH funds 'Breast Cancer and the Environmental Research Center' at Fox Chase Cancer Center

PHILADELPHIA -- Fox Chase Cancer Center has been selected as a site for the National Institutes of Health's newly developed Breast Cancer and Environmental Research Centers. Their purpose is to probe early environmental exposures that may predispose women to breast cancer.

Fox Chase is one of four sites chosen for the Centers. The Centers are funded jointly by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the National Cancer Institute, both NIH agencies, at $5 million a year over seven years for a total of $35 million. The other Centers will be located at University of Cincinnati, University of California at San Francisco, and Michigan State University.

The strength of these Centers is that all will work collaboratively towards the common goal of clarifying whether exposures to environmental agents affect early development of the breast and its subsequent cancer risk. The studies will be carried out through the analyzing the effects of specific environmental agents on the development of mammary tissue in animals, and observing breast development in different ethnic groups of young girls to study their exposures to environmental agents as they go through puberty.

"These four centers will work in close cooperation, bringing all of their expertise to bear upon these questions," said NIEHS director Kenneth Olden. "This will be a united effort among the Centers, not four centers working in isolation."

Fox Chase breast cancer researcher Jose Russo, M.D., is the lead investigator for the Fox Chase Breast Cancer and Environmental Research Center. While the four Centers will network and interact as a single program, each Center will specialize in a particular area of research.

"These multidisciplinary research Centers were specifically designed to fill essential gaps in our knowledge on how environmental exposures impact the development of the breast during puberty and ultimately affect a woman's lifetime breast cancer risk," ex
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Contact: Karen Carter Mallet
k_carter@fccc.edu
215-728-2700
Fox Chase Cancer Center
14-Oct-2003


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