Ridge Administration Awards Cancer-Research Grants Made Possible by Donated State Income-Tax Refunds

PA First Lady Michele Ridge Praises Pennsylvanians Who Helped `Make Their

Mark' in Fight Against Breast, Cervical Cancer



Apr 04, 2001, 01:00 ET from Pennsylvania Department of Health

    PITTSBURGH, April 4 /PRNewswire/ -- On behalf of Pennsylvania Gov. Tom
 Ridge, First Lady Michele Ridge today was joined by Secretary of Health Robert
 S. Zimmerman Jr. to celebrate Pennsylvania's tradition of cancer research.
 Secretary Zimmerman announced nearly $300,000 in grants to eight cancer-
 research centers to fight breast and cervical cancer.
     The grants were made possible by the generous support of Pennsylvanians
 who donated a portion of their state income-tax refunds to research.
     "Through the dedication and tireless efforts of these health
 professionals, we are making it possible for breast- and cervical-cancer
 patients to become breast- and cervical-cancer survivors," Mrs. Ridge said.
 "Gov. Ridge and I are proud of the work they are doing in Pennsylvania and the
 generosity of the thousands of taxpayers who made these grants possible."
     The Department of Health awarded grants totaling $279,998 to eight
 scientists from cancer-research centers statewide.
     Scientists receiving state funding for breast- and cervical-cancer
 research are:
 
     -- Dr. Yvonne Paterson, University of Pennsylvania, $34,998 to study
        "Cancer Immunotherapy with a Live Recombinant Vaccine";
     -- Dr. Scott K. Shore, Temple University, $35,000 to research the "Role of
        Aak in DNA Damaged-Induced Signaling in Breast Cancer";
     -- Dr. Francesmary Modugno, University of Pittsburgh, $35,000 to study
        "Estrogen Metabolism, Body Mass Index, Hormone Replacement Therapy and
        Postmenopausal Breast Cancer Risk";
     -- Dr. Kenneth McCarty Jr., University of Pittsburgh, $35,000 to study
        "Estrogen Receptor Cofactors in the Evaluation of Tamoxifen/Raloxifene
        Resistant Breast Cancers";
     -- Dr. Mark Nichols, University of Pittsburgh, $35,000 to conduct the
        "Analysis of Defective Estrogenic Signaling and Resistance in SERM
        Treated Women";
     -- Dr. Jean J. Latimer, Magee-Womens Health Corp. in Pittsburgh, $35,000
        to research the "Modulation of Human Mammary Epithelial Architecture
        in Vitro and SERM Testing";
     -- Dr. Michael F. Verderame, Pennsylvania State University, $35,000 to
        study the "Disruption of Breast Epithelial Cell Differentiation by
        Tyrosine Kinase Signal Transduction"; and
     -- Dr. Henry Simpkins, Temple University, $35,000 to study the "Expression
        of the Calcium Binding Protein, Sorcin as a Marker of Breast Cancer
        Sensitivity to Paclitaxel."
 
     "We want to remind Pennsylvanians that they can make a difference in the
 fight against cancer," Secretary Zimmerman said.  "The research conducted
 through these grants helps give those affected by breast and cervical cancer
 not only hope, but a real chance to successfully overcome cancer."
     Secretary Zimmerman noted that of the five donation options on last year's
 income-tax form, the breast- and cervical-cancer research checkoff received
 the greatest number of contributions and received the highest average
 donation.
     In 2000, nearly 26,000 Pennsylvanians chose to "Make Their Mark" for
 breast- and cervical-cancer research with an average donation of nearly $8 per
 donor.  Contributions through the donation line, commonly referred to as a
 "checkoff," totaled $194,788.69.
     Each grant recipient can receive up to $35,000.  The Department of
 Health's Cancer Control Program oversees the grants and works with the
 Pennsylvania Cancer Control, Prevention and Research Advisory Board's Income
 Tax Check-Off Committee to determine how to award each year's grants.
     In 1997, Gov. Ridge established the income-tax checkoff provision allowing
 Pennsylvanians to donate a portion of their state tax refunds or contribute
 directly to breast- and cervical-cancer research.
     In 1999, Gov. Ridge and Mrs. Ridge announced the first year's grant
 recipients at the Fox Chase Cancer Center.  Eleven one-year grants up to
 $25,000 each were awarded to researchers.  Last year, six one-year grants up
 to $30,000 were awarded.
     Joining Mrs. Ridge and Secretary Zimmerman for today's announcement were
 Pat Halpin-Murphy, President and Founder of the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer
 Coalition, and Chairperson of the Pennsylvania Cancer Control, Prevention and
 Research Advisory Board's Income Tax Check-Off Committee; and Dr. Ronald B.
 Herberman, Director, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute and Associate
 Vice Chancellor for Research, Health Services.
     Mrs. Ridge and Secretary Zimmerman thanked all cancer researchers for
 their important work and urged Pennsylvania taxpayers to consider donating all
 or a portion of their state income-tax refund or making a direct contribution
 to the Department of Health.
     Approximately 12,000 Pennsylvanians are diagnosed each year with breast
 and cervical cancer.  Breast cancer is the leading cancer diagnosed among
 Pennsylvanian women.  In 1998, 11,732 Pennsylvania women were diagnosed with
 breast cancer, and 2,252 women died from the disease.  Also, in 1998, 629
 Pennsylvania women were diagnosed with cervical cancer, and 210 women died
 from the disease.
     The Ridge Administration supports several other programs to assist women
 in their fight against breast and cervical cancer.
     In 1997, Gov. Ridge signed a law guaranteeing insurance coverage for post-
 mastectomy breast reconstruction up to six years after surgery.
     Gov. Ridge chairs the National Dialogue on Cancer's State Governors'
 Initiative.  The dialogue aims to decrease the incidence of cancer and improve
 the quality of life for cancer survivors.  Under Gov. Ridge's leadership, the
 State Governors' Initiative created a national clearinghouse of best practices
 to combat cancer.  This powerful new tool helps states share what works in the
 battle against cancer.  Gov. Ridge was asked to participate in the dialogue
 because of his Administration's leadership in fighting cancer in Pennsylvania.
     Mrs. Ridge serves as Honorary Chairperson for the Pennsylvania Breast
 Cancer Coalition.  Each year, Mrs. Ridge leads the "Making Strides Against
 Breast Cancer" walks.
     The Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition's traveling photo exhibit, "67
 Women/67 Counties" is part of the Health Department's aggressive breast-cancer
 public awareness and education campaign aimed at families, medical
 professionals, government and civic leaders, and others.
     The department's HealthyWoman Project is a breast- and cervical-cancer
 early detection program that provides mammograms, breast self-examination
 education, clinical breast examinations, pelvic examinations and Pap tests for
 eligible women.  The HealthyWoman Project, in partnership with the Rite Aid
 Women's Health Foundation, the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition and other
 health-care organizations, also offers free breast screenings during the month
 of May through the "Mother's Day Mammograms" program.
     The Pennsylvania Cancer Registry is a statewide cancer registry maintained
 by the Health Department.  This registry is one of the largest in the country
 and maintains comprehensive statewide cancer incidence and mortality data.
     For more information about cancer programs, call the Department of
 Health's toll-free helpline, 1-877-PA-HEALTH, or visit the department's
 website, which can be accessed through the PA PowerPort at www.state.pa.us or
 directly at www.health.state.pa.us.
 
     CONTACT:  Amy Zuccolotto of the Pennsylvania Department of Health,
 717-787-1783; or Sally Bair of the PA First Lady's Office, 717-787-1965.
 
 

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Health
    PITTSBURGH, April 4 /PRNewswire/ -- On behalf of Pennsylvania Gov. Tom
 Ridge, First Lady Michele Ridge today was joined by Secretary of Health Robert
 S. Zimmerman Jr. to celebrate Pennsylvania's tradition of cancer research.
 Secretary Zimmerman announced nearly $300,000 in grants to eight cancer-
 research centers to fight breast and cervical cancer.
     The grants were made possible by the generous support of Pennsylvanians
 who donated a portion of their state income-tax refunds to research.
     "Through the dedication and tireless efforts of these health
 professionals, we are making it possible for breast- and cervical-cancer
 patients to become breast- and cervical-cancer survivors," Mrs. Ridge said.
 "Gov. Ridge and I are proud of the work they are doing in Pennsylvania and the
 generosity of the thousands of taxpayers who made these grants possible."
     The Department of Health awarded grants totaling $279,998 to eight
 scientists from cancer-research centers statewide.
     Scientists receiving state funding for breast- and cervical-cancer
 research are:
 
     -- Dr. Yvonne Paterson, University of Pennsylvania, $34,998 to study
        "Cancer Immunotherapy with a Live Recombinant Vaccine";
     -- Dr. Scott K. Shore, Temple University, $35,000 to research the "Role of
        Aak in DNA Damaged-Induced Signaling in Breast Cancer";
     -- Dr. Francesmary Modugno, University of Pittsburgh, $35,000 to study
        "Estrogen Metabolism, Body Mass Index, Hormone Replacement Therapy and
        Postmenopausal Breast Cancer Risk";
     -- Dr. Kenneth McCarty Jr., University of Pittsburgh, $35,000 to study
        "Estrogen Receptor Cofactors in the Evaluation of Tamoxifen/Raloxifene
        Resistant Breast Cancers";
     -- Dr. Mark Nichols, University of Pittsburgh, $35,000 to conduct the
        "Analysis of Defective Estrogenic Signaling and Resistance in SERM
        Treated Women";
     -- Dr. Jean J. Latimer, Magee-Womens Health Corp. in Pittsburgh, $35,000
        to research the "Modulation of Human Mammary Epithelial Architecture
        in Vitro and SERM Testing";
     -- Dr. Michael F. Verderame, Pennsylvania State University, $35,000 to
        study the "Disruption of Breast Epithelial Cell Differentiation by
        Tyrosine Kinase Signal Transduction"; and
     -- Dr. Henry Simpkins, Temple University, $35,000 to study the "Expression
        of the Calcium Binding Protein, Sorcin as a Marker of Breast Cancer
        Sensitivity to Paclitaxel."
 
     "We want to remind Pennsylvanians that they can make a difference in the
 fight against cancer," Secretary Zimmerman said.  "The research conducted
 through these grants helps give those affected by breast and cervical cancer
 not only hope, but a real chance to successfully overcome cancer."
     Secretary Zimmerman noted that of the five donation options on last year's
 income-tax form, the breast- and cervical-cancer research checkoff received
 the greatest number of contributions and received the highest average
 donation.
     In 2000, nearly 26,000 Pennsylvanians chose to "Make Their Mark" for
 breast- and cervical-cancer research with an average donation of nearly $8 per
 donor.  Contributions through the donation line, commonly referred to as a
 "checkoff," totaled $194,788.69.
     Each grant recipient can receive up to $35,000.  The Department of
 Health's Cancer Control Program oversees the grants and works with the
 Pennsylvania Cancer Control, Prevention and Research Advisory Board's Income
 Tax Check-Off Committee to determine how to award each year's grants.
     In 1997, Gov. Ridge established the income-tax checkoff provision allowing
 Pennsylvanians to donate a portion of their state tax refunds or contribute
 directly to breast- and cervical-cancer research.
     In 1999, Gov. Ridge and Mrs. Ridge announced the first year's grant
 recipients at the Fox Chase Cancer Center.  Eleven one-year grants up to
 $25,000 each were awarded to researchers.  Last year, six one-year grants up
 to $30,000 were awarded.
     Joining Mrs. Ridge and Secretary Zimmerman for today's announcement were
 Pat Halpin-Murphy, President and Founder of the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer
 Coalition, and Chairperson of the Pennsylvania Cancer Control, Prevention and
 Research Advisory Board's Income Tax Check-Off Committee; and Dr. Ronald B.
 Herberman, Director, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute and Associate
 Vice Chancellor for Research, Health Services.
     Mrs. Ridge and Secretary Zimmerman thanked all cancer researchers for
 their important work and urged Pennsylvania taxpayers to consider donating all
 or a portion of their state income-tax refund or making a direct contribution
 to the Department of Health.
     Approximately 12,000 Pennsylvanians are diagnosed each year with breast
 and cervical cancer.  Breast cancer is the leading cancer diagnosed among
 Pennsylvanian women.  In 1998, 11,732 Pennsylvania women were diagnosed with
 breast cancer, and 2,252 women died from the disease.  Also, in 1998, 629
 Pennsylvania women were diagnosed with cervical cancer, and 210 women died
 from the disease.
     The Ridge Administration supports several other programs to assist women
 in their fight against breast and cervical cancer.
     In 1997, Gov. Ridge signed a law guaranteeing insurance coverage for post-
 mastectomy breast reconstruction up to six years after surgery.
     Gov. Ridge chairs the National Dialogue on Cancer's State Governors'
 Initiative.  The dialogue aims to decrease the incidence of cancer and improve
 the quality of life for cancer survivors.  Under Gov. Ridge's leadership, the
 State Governors' Initiative created a national clearinghouse of best practices
 to combat cancer.  This powerful new tool helps states share what works in the
 battle against cancer.  Gov. Ridge was asked to participate in the dialogue
 because of his Administration's leadership in fighting cancer in Pennsylvania.
     Mrs. Ridge serves as Honorary Chairperson for the Pennsylvania Breast
 Cancer Coalition.  Each year, Mrs. Ridge leads the "Making Strides Against
 Breast Cancer" walks.
     The Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition's traveling photo exhibit, "67
 Women/67 Counties" is part of the Health Department's aggressive breast-cancer
 public awareness and education campaign aimed at families, medical
 professionals, government and civic leaders, and others.
     The department's HealthyWoman Project is a breast- and cervical-cancer
 early detection program that provides mammograms, breast self-examination
 education, clinical breast examinations, pelvic examinations and Pap tests for
 eligible women.  The HealthyWoman Project, in partnership with the Rite Aid
 Women's Health Foundation, the Pennsylvania Breast Cancer Coalition and other
 health-care organizations, also offers free breast screenings during the month
 of May through the "Mother's Day Mammograms" program.
     The Pennsylvania Cancer Registry is a statewide cancer registry maintained
 by the Health Department.  This registry is one of the largest in the country
 and maintains comprehensive statewide cancer incidence and mortality data.
     For more information about cancer programs, call the Department of
 Health's toll-free helpline, 1-877-PA-HEALTH, or visit the department's
 website, which can be accessed through the PA PowerPort at www.state.pa.us or
 directly at www.health.state.pa.us.
 
     CONTACT:  Amy Zuccolotto of the Pennsylvania Department of Health,
 717-787-1783; or Sally Bair of the PA First Lady's Office, 717-787-1965.
 
 SOURCE  Pennsylvania Department of Health