1999 - Carlo Croce

Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Jefferson Medical College
Thomas Jefferson University
Philadelphia, PA

Motivation:
The AACR-Pezcoller International Award is given to a scientist who has made a major scientific discovery in the field of cancer research. For the second award, an international committee of prominent scientists chose Dr. Carlo M. Croce of Thomas Jefferson University. The Association, in collaboration with the Pezcoller Foundation, wishes to honor Dr. Croce for his extensive series of discoveries that have significantly extended our understanding of the genetic basis of human cancer. Utilizing hybrids, Dr. Croce first demonstrated that human Ig Ioci are involved in the Burkitt translocations and are juxtaposed to the myc gene that is deregulated in Burkitt’s lymphoma. He also mapped the T-cell receptor genes and showed that their involvement in translocations is responsible for most T-cell leukemias and lymphomas. Nor have Dr. Croce’s contributions been limited to hematological malignancies. His research program has identified fragile sites within the FHIT locus in gastrointestinal tract, breast, and lung cancers and renal tumors. Finally, he showed that consistent chromosomal changes observed in human cancers may be exploited to clone and identify human cancer genes such as bcl-2. These major contributions to the cancer research endeavor have not only greatly extended our knowledge of cancer genetics, but also constitute the basis for potential breakthroughs in the development of gene therapy for human cancer.
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