Damon Runyon News

July 16, 2019

For the past eight years, the Illini 4000 has spent their summers biking across the country to raise awareness and funds for cancer research. These students from the University of Illinois-Urbana began this year’s road trip in New York City on May 18. They will traverse more than 4,000 miles, battling weather and rough terrain, wrapping up August 3 at the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.

July 9, 2019
Awards and Honors

Jason M. Sheltzer, PhD (Damon Runyon-Rachleff Innovator ’18 – ‘20), and Christopher Jewell, PhD (Damon Runyon-Rachleff Innovator ’14 – ’18), have received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE). The PECASE is the highest honor bestowed by the United States government to researchers at the beginning their independent research careers, who show exceptional promise for leadership in science and technology.

July 3, 2019
Latest News

When Bruce W. Stillman, PhD (Damon Runyon Fellow ’79 - ’81), arrived at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory from his native Australia, he expected to stay for two years — the length of his Damon Runyon award. Forty years later, Dr. Stillman is the President and CEO of the renowned institution. 

July 1, 2019
Latest News

The Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation named five new Damon Runyon Clinical Investigators at its spring 2019 Clinical Investigator Award Committee review. The recipients of this prestigious three-year award are outstanding early career physician-scientists conducting patient-oriented cancer research at major research centers under the mentorship of the nation’s leading scientists and clinicians. Each will receive $600,000 to support the development of his/her project, selected for its potential to impact cancer diagnosis, prevention and treatment. Damon Runyon also repays medical school debt up to $100,000 still owed by the awardee.

June 26, 2019
Awards and Honors

Emily P. Balskus, PhD (Damon Runyon-Rachleff Innovator ’14 – ’16), received the Blavatnik National Award for Young Scientists in Chemistry, the largest unrestricted scientific prize ($250,000) offered to the most promising, faculty-level scientific researchers in the United States. Dr. Balskus, a chemical biologist at Harvard University, is being recognized for her “transformative work identifying the novel chemistry of the gut microbiome and deciphering its role in human health and disease.”

June 19, 2019

The cancer was spreading into her spine, despite the intensive chemotherapy she had already endured. But Denise refused to give up. A single mom and real estate agent, she was determined to see her son graduate from college. 

June 17, 2019

James E. Rothman, PhD, received the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for work he began when he was a Damon Runyon Fellow from 1976 to 1978. His research demonstrated, for the first time, how tiny sac-like structures called vesicles help transport substances to different places inside the cell and send molecules from the cell's surface as signals to other cells in the body.

June 13, 2019
New Discovery

CRISPR pioneer, Former Damon Runyon Innovator Feng Zhang, PhD, and colleagues at the Broad Institute and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, have found a new enzyme that can insert custom genes into DNA without first cutting it apart. This method could make future gene editing more accurate and safer for treating a number of diseases by replacing a disease-related gene with a healthy version. 

June 10, 2019
Latest News

Henry T. Lynch, MD (Damon Runyon Grantee 1969-70), father of cancer genetics, has passed away at age 91, leaving behind a lasting legacy in cancer research and treatment. When Dr. Lynch began his career, most scientists blamed cancer on environmental causes, such as the presence of carcinogenic chemicals and viruses. Hereditary explanations were dismissed, even shunned. His painstaking research putting together family histories established that certain cancers are hereditary. Today genetic screening is an important part of cancer prevention, saving thousands of lives.

June 6, 2019
Latest News

The Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation honored William M. Raveis, Jr., Chairman and CEO, William Raveis Real Estate, Mortgage & Insurance, for his transformational support and commitment to raising funds and awareness for Damon Runyon.