Dr. Philip Greenberg, head of the Center’s Immunology Program in the Clinical Research Division, is the joint recipient of the 2011 William B. Coley Award for Distinguished Research in Tumor Immunology for his pioneering research in adoptive T-cell therapy.
Bestowed annually by the Cancer Research Institute, Inc., the prestigious award recognizes scientists whose discoveries in the fields of immunology or tumor immunology significantly contribute to the advancement of immune system-based therapies for cancer.
On Oct. 3, the CRI will bestow the award to Greenberg, whose primary appointment is at the University of Washington School of Medicine, and Dr. Steven Rosenberg, chief of surgery at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Md.
"For more than 30 years, Drs. Greenberg and Rosenberg led the vanguard of adoptive T-cell therapy, and their many contributions to this field have opened up important new avenues for the immunologic treatment of cancer," said Dr. Jill O’Donnell-Tormey, chief executive officer and director of scientific affairs at CRI.
"More recently, their work and that of their colleagues has demonstrated that adoptive T-cell transfer can produce potent anti-cancer immune responses, including dramatic remissions in some patients with melanoma and sarcoma. These clinical results demonstrate the potential of adoptive T-cell therapy, and, we predict, are precursors to future successes in broader cancer patient populations," O’Donnell-Tormey said.
CRI is a U.S. nonprofit organization established in 1953 to advance the science of tumor immunology and drive the discovery of new cancer immunotherapies Since 1975, the organization has presented the award to 81 scientists, many of whom have gone on to win prestigious awards including the Gairdner Prize, National Medal of Science, Lasker Award, and the Nobel Prize. As such, many consider the Coley Award as a marker for the most important scientific developments in the history of cancer immunotherapy and as a predictor of future impact of these discoveries on human health.