New York, N.Y.—The Deal community will honor the Israel Cancer Research Fund (ICRF) at its annual “Evening of Inspiration” on Thursday, August 8, in Deal. Lisa Oved, Samantha Harary, Ariela Ben Dayan and Charles Ben Dayan are the evening’s chairpersons. Harry Adjmi will serve as the Master of Ceremonies.
Special highlights of the benefit will include inspirational speaker Dr. Gerald Soff, chief of Hematology, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. A veteran supporter of ICRF who served for three years on the ICRF Scientific Review Panel, Dr. Soff treats patients suffering from blood diseases and varying types of blood cancer.
A number of years ago after suffering from extreme fatigue, Dr. Soff ordered a panel of routine blood tests and learned he had multiple myeloma, a deadly form of bone marrow cancer. When he was in medical training 30 years ago, patients suffering from multiple myeloma faced a life expectancy of two years. Thanks to a scientific breakthrough from two ICRF-funded scientists for which they were awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry (2003), Dr. Soff was successfully treated with a novel class of drugs whose activity is based on that work and now offers patients with multiple myeloma the possibility of a high quality of life and prolonged survival.
Another special evening attraction will be a fashion show featuring designs by Christian Siriano, an American fashion designer known for his “whimsical and show-stopping designs, from fantasy evening gowns and cocktail dresses to tailored sportswear, intricately detailed shoes and accessories.” Siriano’s collection is featured in department stores and boutiques around the world.
The Israel Cancer Research Fund (ICRF) was founded in 1977 by a group of American and Canadian physicians, scientists and lay leaders who sought to prevent the permanent loss of Israel’s most promising cancer researchers to foreign universities due to the lack of funding in Israel for Ph.D.s, post-doctoral fellows and accomplished young scientists. Since its founding, the organization has awarded 2,426 grants to Israeli cancer researchers via fellowships, project grants, career development awards and professorships. With the grants for 2018/19, ICRF’s funding has now surpassed the $68 million mark!
ICRF grants are selected after an intensive peer review by a distinguished Scientific Review Panel (SRP) composed of leading physicians and scientists from the U.S. and Canada. Modeled after the National Institute of Health’s (NIH) Review process, the SRP bases its selection criteria on the scientific merit of the project, the demonstrated ability of the investigators and the suitability of the institutions in which they work. The efforts of Israeli cancer researchers have contributed to some of the most significant cancer breakthroughs of recent years and have resulted in collaborations with major international cancer organizations, including City of Hope and the Cancer Research Institute.
“Research has never been more exciting or promising and that is particularly true in Israel,” noted Dr. Mark Israel, National Executive Director of ICRF. “Israeli science knows no bounds. ICRF provides a singular opportunity to help build more recognition and support for the world-class cancer research of Israeli scientists, and to arm and empower its finest practitioners with the resources necessary to change the world.
“With enhanced funding,” said Ken Gabel, ICRF New York Director of Development, “we can continue to support the vital research that is needed to treat and ultimately cure cancer, while playing a critical role in helping to keep Israel’s finest scientific talent in Israel. The generous support of the Deal community helps ICRF-funded scientists to fund more cures and treatments for cancer, for the benefit of all human kind.”
“ The annual support that ICRF receives from the Deal community is a key engine driving our efforts to enhance the work of Israel’s most accomplished scientists . We are so grateful and humbled by their commitment to Tikkun Olam ,” added Dr. Israel.