The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Moon Shots Program is celebrating their largest donation in the form of a $50 million contribution commitment from Dallas’ Lyda Hill. In recognition of the important and generous donation from Ms. Hill, there will now be a Lyda Hill Cancer Prevention Center named in her honor. Pledged in September 2012, the $50 million promised by Ms. Hill is the ambitious program’s largest contribution to date. Newswise reports that:
…the Moon Shots Program comprises six teams of MD Anderson researchers and clinicians initially focusing on these eight cancers:
• acute myeloid leukemia (AML)/myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS)
• chronic lymphocytic leukemia
• lung cancer
• prostate cancer
• triple-negative breast and high-grade serous ovarian cancers.
The ultimate goal is to apply knowledge gained from this process to all cancers. Moon shot efforts will help support all other cancer research at MD Anderson, particularly with improved resources and infrastructure.
Lyda Hill’s donation has been earmarked for projects such as an effort to create cost effective and reliable screenings for lung cancer and an initiative to screen breast cancer patients for the genetic mutations known as BRCA1 and BRCA2. “I’m excited about the Moon Shots Program,” Hill is reported as saying. “It represents a different direction for research that crosses disciplines and offers new hope for breaking cancer’s codes. I’m pleased to offer my support to this historic effort.”
The MD Anderson Cancer Center, for their part, is “astounded” and “humbled” by Ms. Hill’s “incredible generosity and commitment to cancer patients and their families” according to President Ronald DePinho, M.D. Ms. Hill is a Dallas-based philanthropist, environmentalist, and businesswoman who is President of both the Lyda Hill Foundation and LH Holdings.