A new pancreatic cancer research center has been created at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC). The ambitious initiative was established with an initial commitment of $10 million from MSKCC Board member David M. Rubenstein. The new program, called the David M. Rubenstein Center for Pancreatic Cancer Research, will bring together Memorial Sloan-Kettering's outstanding physicians and an expanding group of scientists in an intensive program designed to spearhead crucial progress in understanding and treating one of the deadliest forms of cancer.
Mr. Rubenstein is the Co-Founder and Co-Chief Executive Officer of The Carlyle Group, a global alternative asset manager.
"The gift could not come at a more critical time," said Craig B. Thompson, MD, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center President, who notes that pancreatic cancer is the fourth leading cause of death by cancer in the United States—and that, because it is highly complex, the disease has been relatively understudied compared to other forms of cancer. "Now, thanks to David's magnificent generosity and vision, we are superbly positioned to build on our proven clinical pancreatic cancer expertise to create a comprehensive research and training program that will drive future advances in therapy."
The David M. Rubenstein Center for Pancreatic Cancer Research will support activities on every front in the fight against the disease. In addition to providing funds for a senior investigator to direct the program along with a full slate of educational initiatives—including postgraduate fellowships for future leaders in the field—it will sponsor competitive research grants to encourage creative collaborations at Memorial Sloan-Kettering. These grants will underwrite translational studies that can provide the proof-of-concept for clinical trials of promising new therapies, in parallel with research that will lead to improved methods of prevention, screening, early detection, and risk assessment in pancreatic cancer.