ICV is pleased to announce the launch of the Cancer Breakthroughs Fund to invest in proof-of-concept studies that typically go unfunded through traditional government and industry sources. The Fund will serve as a vital source of support for innovative research being conducted at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center (SKCC) at Thomas Jefferson University. Every month, pilot grants will be awarded to Karen Knudsen, PhD, Director of the SKCC and Chair of the Association of American Cancer Institutes (AACI). Dr. Knudsen is one of six women in the United States to serve as director of a National Cancer Institute (NCI) designated cancer center. She is a leader among the next generation of cancer researchers and clinicians who will write the final chapters of the story that puts cancer into the history books.

 
 

In the last hour, an estimated 192 people were diagnosed with cancer in the United States and every minute, someone dies from cancer in our country. At present, 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women in the United States will receive a cancer diagnosis, and over 15 million Americans are living with the disease.
 

 
PartnershipsIn a public-private partnership between Jefferson and ICV, a model that has never been done before in health sciences, we are putting people with capital on the front lines to wipe out some of the world’s deadliest diseases.

ICV will provide full transparency. Every quarter, ICV and select donors will sit with the SKCC research team to review progress in real-time.

What matters. How can we make the most impact with the resources available. What legacy will we leave.

Join us as we empower researchers in this fight.
 
 

“I walk into the building every day with full confidence that our breakthroughs and passion for providing the most advanced cancer care are making a difference.”

 – Karen Knudsen, M.D.

 
 
 

 
 

 
The Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center

A leading center for practice-changing discovery and comprehensive cancer treatment, the Sidney Kimmel Cancer team at Jefferson has been known as a Designated Center by the National Cancer Institute since 1996, and is one of only 69 institutions in the nation to hold this prestigious recognition. SKCC is committed to delivering the most advanced, personalized cancer care, made possible through their scientific discoveries and breakthroughs in detecting and treating cancer. SKCC provides access to advanced clinical trials and novel treatment strategies throughout the Greater Delaware Valley. SKCC is routinely ranked amongst the top hospitals for cancer care in the United States by US News & World Report, the multi-disciplinary teams at SKCC bring together specialists for treatment planning, which results in some of the highest survival rates in the nation.

The SKCC team believes they can beat cancer. And, this can be made possible by people like you, whose vision, leadership, and generosity provide the catalyst needed to redefine the future of cancer care. With this mission, SKCC will work tirelessly, until every cancer is cured.

The SKCC has collaborative efforts spanning five continents, including North America, South America, Europe, Asia and Australia, and more than 1,000 physicians, scientists and staff from 50 countries treat nearly 250,000 cancer patients at 30 Sidney Kimmel Cancer Network member organizations.

The SKCC Pioneer & Heroes Report
 
 
 
 

 

 
Discovery Made Possible By You

In the fight against cancer, science matters. From molecular breakthroughs to innovative therapies, research uncovers the cures of tomorrow, and saves lives today. At the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center (SKCC) at Jefferson, science is the foundation of everything. From the bench to the bedside, the SKCC’s dedicated faculty of over 150 physicians and researchers are committed to solving the medical mysteries of cancer.

The healthcare landscape is changing. The old math for academic medical centers—which relied heavily on federal funding for research, clinical reimbursements, and tuition—no longer adds up. This new medical climate presents new challenges, particularly for pilot-stage investigators who now have fewer opportunities to secure funding for their work.
 
 

 

 
The ICV Group Cancer Breakthroughs Fund: Fuel Early Stage Investigators in Cancer at SKCC

All treatments that are now standard of care were once considered cutting edge, and all began with trailblazing researchers brave enough to think outside of the box, exploring frontiers that others had not even imagined.

SKCC strives to think differently, identifying what will be obvious in ten years and developing solutions for them today. The SKCC is home to visionary physicians and scientists who are dogged in their pursuit of high-risk, high-reward pilot research that has the potential to fundamentally transform our understanding and treatment of cancer in all its forms. However, too often these proof-of-concept studies go unfunded through traditional government and industry sources.

The ICV Foundation Cancer Breakthroughs Fund will change this paradigm, serving as a vital source of support for SKCC’s most promising and innovative researchers. Every month, pilot grants will be awarded by Karen E. Knudsen, PhD—Director of SKCC and the Hilary Koprowski Endowed Professor and Chair—and the SKCC Executive Council. All ICV members will be kept abreast of the latest findings and breakthroughs made possible by the Fund.
 
Initial Focus: Hematologic Malignancies (e.g., Leukemia and Lymphoma), Prostate Cancer, Breast Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Car-T Cell Therapy.

Executive Summary for Donors  |  $3M Seed Round:

  • $600,000 will be allotted per year for the next 5 years to fund Karen Knudsen, PhD and early stage investors in basic science cancer research at the SKCC
  • The mission of this initiative is to fund the researchers that may eventually cure cancer
  • Pilot grants are to be awarded monthly by Karen Knudsen, PhD, Director of the SKCC, and the SKCC Executive Council
  • Multiple touch points, updates and exclusive access shall be provided throughout the year to the SKCC research team
  • Jefferson Signature Services will be provided for select donors that meet donor requirements
  • Transparent, impact reporting with results shared in real-time

 
 
 

 

 
A Transformational Investment: The ICV Group Professorship in Research

Endowed professorships are a pillar of academic medicine. Reserved for leaders in the field, they recognize the holder who has earned the distinction and those who made the professorship possible, melding the achievements of the holder with the vision of the donors. The benefits are tangible and immediate, providing the funding necessary to generate new learning, conduct path-breaking research, and catalyze next-generation therapies.

The ICV Foundation Professorship in Cancer Research will support the innovative work of SKCC’s top investigators in perpetuity. As such, it will serve as a powerful and lasting tribute to the leadership, legacy, and innovative spirit of ICV for generations to come.

And there are few researchers more deserving of this prestigious honor than SKCC’s Christine Eischen, PhD, who will be the inaugural holder of the world’s first ICV Foundation professorship.

Executive Summary for Donors  |  $2M to Establish Professorship in Research:

  • Christine Eischen, PhD will be the first holder of this unique and prestigious position
  • Dr. Eischen is an internationally renowned cancer researcher and one of the most important recruits in Jefferson’s history
  • A $500,000 match from the Sidney Kimmel Foundation already pre-approved by the Dean of the Sidney Kimmel Medical College to demonstrate the commitment of Jefferson
  • This Professorship will allow Dr. Eischen to expand the Eischen Lab at SKCC, recruit top talent and expedite breakthroughs in the cancer research field
  • Transparent, impact reporting with results shared in real-time

 
 

 
A Pioneer in Lymphoma Research

Dr. Eischen is a renowned scientist whose research is redefining how lymphoma is studied. Her high-impact work has already brought national recognition and distinction to SKCC, producing advances that will pave the way for innovative cancer treatments.

Among her many contributions to the field, Dr. Eischen has discovered ingenious ways cancer cells avoid death—by turning off proteins that induce cell death and turning on proteins that protect them from cell death. The team recently made a first-in-field discovery of a mitochondrial protein whose role in cancer was completely unknown but is, in fact, critical for the development and growth of lymphoma.

Through additional research, Dr. Eischen will work to elucidate how this previously unknown vulnerability can be targeted to treat lymphoma and other aggressive cancers.
 
 

 
Jefferson’s Financial Commitment

There has never been a better time to establish an endowed professorship at SKCC. In recognition of this endowment’s transformative potential, Jefferson has allocated $500,000 in matching funds, which would bring the ICV Foundation Professorship in Cancer Research total to $2,500,000.
 
 

 
Management Team

Karen KnudsenKaren Knudsen, PhD, is Director of the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University and the Hilary Koprowski Chair of the Department of Cancer Biology of the Sidney Kimmel Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University. Jefferson has been a Philadelphia area leader in oncology research, patient treatment and cancer education services for almost 25 years. Initially a single cancer center with a staff of 30, today the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center (SKCC) at Jefferson includes 32 hospital and practice member institutions staffed by hundreds of oncology researchers and physicians from around the globe. Dr. Knudsen is an expert in the molecular basis of hormone-dependent cancer development and progression, with a special focus on developing means to prevent or treat lethal prostate cancers. Dr. Knudsen’s research interests are dedicated to understanding the mechanisms by which genetic alterations lead to cancer progression and therapeutic bypass. Her studies identifying tumor suppressor and hormone receptor alterations have uncovered new targets for treating advanced disease, and led to development of innovative, biomarker-driven clinical trials. Dr. Knudsen is the Hilary Koprowski Professor and Chair of Cancer Biology at the Thomas Jefferson University, with joint appointments in the Departments of Urology, Radiation Oncology, and Medical Oncology. Notably, Dr. Knudsen served as the first Vice Provost for Thomas Jefferson University, overseeing and integrating basic and clinical research across all six schools at TJU. She took leave of this post in light of her appointment as Director of the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center (SKCC). For the NCI-designated center, Dr. Knudsen was appointed in 2015 as Director. Dr. Knudsen has significant experience leading multidisciplinary efforts at SKCC and beyond, having served as Deputy Director for Research, founding Leader of the Prostate Program, and Director of Research for t Medical Oncology. Dr. Knudsen serves on multiple national boards and committees associated with both basic and clinical research, including several for the American Association for Cancer Research, the Endocrine Society, and the Prostate Cancer Foundation. She was a Senior Editor for Cancer Research from 2007-2013, is an Associate Editor for Endocrine-Related Cancer, and sits on the editorial boards of Molecular Cancer Therapeutics, the American Journal of Pathology, Molecular Endocrinology, and Oncogene. Most recently, Dr. Knudsen was appointed Editor-in-Chief of Molecular Cancer Research by AACR.
 
 
Christine Eischen earned her PhD in Immunology/Apoptosis from the Mayo Clinic, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship in Cancer Biology/Mouse Genetics from St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis. Dr. Eischen holds the titles of Professor, Vice Chair of the Department of Cancer Biology, and Co-Leader of the Molecular Biology and Genetics program in SKCC. The focus of the Eischen Laboratory is to identify and study the genes that regulate cellular transformation, specifically cells that transform into cancer.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 

 
At the end of the day, at the end of our lives, we will ask ourselves whether we could have done more for the health and well-being of the planet, of humanity and all living things.Leverage your charitable giving to create social change with ICV’s Catalytic Philanthropy.