Leading breast cancer researcher awarded new lectureship

Olufunmilayo I. Olopade, M.D., director of the Center for Clinical Cancer Genetics at the University of Chicago Medical Center, is the inaugural recipient of the AACR-Minorities in Cancer Research-Jane Cooke Wright Lectureship. The award is given to an outstanding scientist who has made meritorious contributions to the field of cancer research and who has, through leadership or by example, furthered the advancement of minority investigators in cancer research.

The award, sponsored by AACR-Minorities in Cancer Research, is named in honor of Jane Cooke Wright, M.D., a pioneer in clinical cancer chemotherapy and an exceptional scientist who is African-American and who has made important contributions to research in this field.

Dr. Olopade is being recognized for her pre-eminent research in breast cancer. An international leader in the field, her application of a multidisciplinary laboratory and clinical approach in cancer genetics has led to strategies for prevention and/or early detection in patients at high risk for breast cancer and to the identification of novel BRCA-1 mutations in African-American families with a history of familial breast cancer.

Her discovery of a putative tumor suppressor gene involved in several other solid tumors eventually led to the identification of p16INK4. Dr. Olopade's perspective on the importance of translating research findings to clinical application is consistent with the philosophy of Dr. Wright.

As a physician-scientist, she has mentored numerous fellows and served as role model to many young scientists participating in cancer research. Her enthusiasm and accomplishments have inspired many junior faculty and fellows pursuing careers in academic medicine.

Dr. Olopade received her medical degree with distinction from the University of Ibadan in Nigeria. She came to the United States as a resident in internal medicine at Cook County Hospital in Chicago where she was named Chief Medical Re

Contact: Yarissa Ortiz
American Association for Cancer Research

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