Weizmann Scientist Receives Grant From Ovarian Cancer Research Fund

April 21, 1998

NEW YORK, N.Y., April 22, 1998--The Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, Inc. (OCRF) announced today that it has received a $100,000 grant from The Israel Histradut Foundation, Inc. for a two-year study to seek genetic markers for early detection of ovarian cancer. The study will take place at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, in the laboratory of Prof. Yosef Yarden, announced Elizabeth J. Tilberis, President of OCRF.

Prof. Yarden's research deals with a family of proteins called ErbB receptors. These proteins are primary regulators of ovarian cell growth. Prof. Yarden is conducting studies aimed at evaluating potential use of these proteins for screening and therapy for ovarian cancer.

"Ovarian Cancer is a disease that does not discriminate, attacking women of all ages, from all walks of life," said Elizabeth J. Tilberis, President of The Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, Inc. and Editor in Chief of Harper's Bazaar. "Screening for early detection of the disease is urgently needed to combat this silent killer. Prof. Yarden's study of the ErbB signaling network is a promising step in this direction," Ms. Tilberis concluded.

Ovarian cancer is the leading cause of death from gynecological cancers in the United States. Each year, more than 25,000 women are diagnosed with the disease. Because ovarian cancer is asymptomatic in its earliest stages, it most often detected when the disease is advanced. Effective early detection and screening tests have not yet been developed. Because most patients are diagnosed late in their disease course, less than 35% of all patients with ovarian cancer are alive and free of disease five years after diagnosis.

"OCRF is proud to sponsor the research of Prof. Yarden and the work of the Weizmann Institute," said Sol Schreiber, Co-Chair and founder.

"Understanding the molecular biology of patients with ovarian cancer is critical to the formulation of strategies for therapy, early detection and, ultimately, prevention," said Dr. Carmel Jonathan Cohen, Professor and Director of Gynecological Oncology and Gynecological Services, Mount Sinai Medical Center and Chair of The Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, Inc. "Investigations such as that of Professor Yarden require our support to hasten the accomplishment of this goal," Dr. Cohen concluded.

The Weizmann Institute of Science, in Rehovot, Israel, is one of the world's foremost centers of scientific research and graduate study. Its 2,500 scientists, students, technicians, and engineers pursue basic research in the quest for knowledge and the enhancement of the human condition. New ways of fighting disease and hunger, protecting the environment, and harnessing alternative sources of energy are high priorities.

The Ovarian Cancer Research Fund (OCRF) is devoted to the formulation of early diagnostic treatment programs and research toward the ultimate conquest of ovarian cancer. OCRF is working to support cutting-edge research programs focusing on screening, early detection, and translational research which makes application of laboratory discoveries possible for clinical therapy.

American Committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science

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