The MACC Fund’s Scientific Advisory Board’s 2010 Site Visit

Four of the nation’s leading hematology, oncology and bone marrow transplant specialists are in Milwaukee for a biennial visit to review MACC Fund supported research.  The MACC Fund’s Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) dates back to 1980.  At that time, the MACC Fund Board determined that independent, outside oversight of the research the MACC Fund supports would be beneficial.  The first members of the SAB were from Harvard, Yale and St. Jude’s Research Hospital.  Like the current SAB, they visited every two years.  

 The 2010 Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) site visit is October 13 and 14.  The distinguished, nationally reknown SAB will meet with MACC Fund supported members of the Medical College of Wisconsin, the University of Wisconsin, and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin.  The 2010 SAB members are: Susan Blaney, M.D. – Vice Chair of Research, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine and Deputy Director, Texas Children’s Cancer Center who will Chair the Site Visit. She will be joined by Crystal Mackall, M.D. – Chief, Pediatric Oncology Branch – National Institutes of Health who will be making her second visit.  Making their first visits are Stella Davies, M.D., Ph.D. – Director of Bone Marrow Transplantation and Immune Deficiency – Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and Russell Ware, M.D., Ph.D. – Chair, Department of Hematology and Endowed Chair in Sickle Cell Disease – St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

The MACC Fund’s Board of Directors looks to the SAB report for recommendations for important research funding for pediatric cancer and related blood disorders. For example, the 2006 SAB report played a key role in the decision to give $5 million to Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin to fund research infrastructure, a tissue bank, and a research database support in the MACC Fund Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders as well as the $3.5 million grant to the University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center’s MACC Fund Childhood Cancer Research Wing in the Wisconsin Interdisciplinary Medical Research (WIMR) Center.

Current and past SAB members are from many of the nation’s leading academic medical institutions and Children’s Hospitals including Harvard, Yale, Johns Hopkins, UCLA, University of California San Francisco, University of Southern California, St. Jude’s Research Hospital, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, Texas Children’s Hospital/Baylor College of Medicine; Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) University of Pennsylvania Medical School and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH.)

The MACC Fund has contributed $38 million for research support at the Medical College of Wisconsin, the University of Wisconsin and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin since the inception of the MACC Fund in 1976.  The overall cure rate for childhood cancer has risen from 20% to 80% in the past 34 years with the MACC Fund playing an important role in this impressive statistic. The Scientific Advisory Board’s recommendations have also played an important role in this success.

~John Cary – Executive Director

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