Pershing Square Sohn Cancer Research Alliance


The Pershing Square Sohn Cancer Research Alliance is dedicated to playing a catalytic role in accelerating cures for cancer by enabling the pursuit of the most innovative and advanced cancer research and by facilitating collaborations between science and business.

Early-Stage Funding for Cancer Research

The Prize for young investigators provides early-stage funding opportunities to New York scientists with innovative ideas in cancer research. The program surrounding the Prize is a catalyst in bridging the gap between the academic scientific community and the business community.

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2021 Prize Winners

News

September 3, 2021
Why Are Only Some Cells ‘Competent’ to Form Cancer? MSK Scientists Say Context Is Key

MEMORIAL SLOAN KETTERING  — Right now, in your body, lurk thousands of cells with DNA mistakes that could cause cancer. Yet only in rare instances do these DNA mistakes, called genetic mutations, lead to a full-blown cancer. Why? The standard explanation is that it takes a certain number of genetic “hits” to a cell’s DNA to push a cell over the edge. But there are well-known cases in which the same set of mutations clearly causes cancer in one context, but not in another.

A good example is a mole. The cells making up a mole are genetically abnormal. Quite often, they contain a mutated version of the BRAF gene that, when found in cells located outside of a mole, will often lead to melanoma. But the vast majority of moles will never turn cancerous. It’s a conundrum that has scientists looking to cellular context for clues to explain the difference.

“We’ve known for a while that cellular context matters in cancer formation,” says Richard White, MD, PhD, a physician-scientist at MSK who studies melanoma in the lab. “But exactly how context combines with genetic mutations to promote cancer is largely unknown.”

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Events

October 24, 2019 
2019 PRIX GALIEN PRESIDENT’S DINNER, ANNUAL GALIEN FORUM, AND ANNUAL PRIX GALIEN USA AWARDS CEREMONY

The Prix Galien recognizes outstanding innovation to improve the human condition by means of biomedical research.  It is considered the industry’s equivalent of the Nobel Prize, the highest accolade for biomedical research and development.  The annual Galien Forum is a meeting-of-the minds at which pressing issues are debated by front-runners in industry, academia and government. This is a special opportunity for recipients of the Pershing Square Sohn Prize for Young Investigators in Cancer Research to spend time with such leaders.

Pershing Square Sohn Prize winners, Scientific Review Council members, and guests which included individuals from philanthropy, academia, industry, and business attended this year’s Forum at the Alexandria Center for Life Science in New York City. The event featured talks by executives from the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical industries, as well as top academics and government representatives.  Following the Forum, select guests were invited to attend the Prix Galien Awards Ceremony at the American Museum of Natural History.

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“The Pershing Square Foundation is proud to support scientific leaders in the fight against cancer.”

Bill Ackman, Co-Founder. The Pershing Square Foundation