U.S. Scientist Garners Distinguished Honors in Basic Science Research; South Korean Physician Selected for Prestigious Clinical Research Award
DALLAS – October 13, 2010 –
About the Brinker Award Winners
Jeffrey M. Rosen, PhD
Soonmyung Paik, M.D.
An American scientist studying how breast cancer may alter the hormonal development of mammary glands and a South Korean physician trying to improve ways to predict which treatments will prove most effective for certain patients are this year’s winners of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure® Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction in basic science and clinical research. This is the highest award of merit given by the nation’s leading breast cancer advocacy organization.This year’s recipient in the category of basic science is Jeffrey Rosen, Ph.D., a Distinguished Service Professor and the C.C. Bell Professor of Molecular & Cellular Biology and Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine. Rosen is also a new member of Komen for the Cure’s Scientific Advisory Council. Soonmyung Paik, M.D., the Distinguished Scientist in Medicine and the director of Samsung Cancer Research Institute, Seoul, South Korea, is recognized in the award category of clinical research.Rosen is being honored for his pivotal laboratory work spanning more than 35 years that has focused on critical insights behind the fundamental mechanisms of mammary gland development as well as his most recent work with human breast cancer stem cells.Paik is being recognized for his instrumental role in changing the biologic understanding of breast cancer and the development of a commercially available genomic method for estimating breast cancer risk of recurrence and the benefit from chemotherapy. This has had a tremendous clinical impact in the management of ER-positive breast cancer today.“The basic science award honors the vitally important contributions Dr. Rosen has made to our understanding of hormonal regulation of mammary gene expression,” said Eric Winer, M.D., Komen’s chief scientific advisor. “Dr. Paik is recognized with the clinical award for his innovative translational research that led to the development of a genomic classifier and his pivotal work to identify subpopulations of HER-2 positive breast cancer patients who do and do not benefit from Herceptin.”Each honoree will deliver a keynote lecture and be honored at the 33rd annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, a major international gathering of breast cancer researchers, clinicians and patient advocacy organizations. Each also will receive a cash award of $25,000.The Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction was established in 1992 to recognize the efforts of pioneers in two critically important areas of the fight to end breast cancer: clinical research and basic science. The roster of Komen Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction laureates has grown to include names of researchers who have made the most significant advances in breast cancer diagnosis and treatment as well as research. This year’s awardees, as well as past laureates, are invited to a private reception during the San Antonio conference this year.Jeffrey Rosen studied chemistry at Williams College where he received a BA degree in 1966. His Ph.D. research at the Roswell Park Cancer Institute helped elucidate the mechanisms for glucocorticoid resistance in lymphomas. His postdoctoral studies at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine under the supervision of Dr. Bert W. O’Malley were concerned with the mechanism of action of estrogen on growth and differentiation in the chick oviduct. These involved the isolation of ovalbumin mRNA and the first demonstration of steroid hormone induction of a specific mRNA. He joined the faculty of Baylor College of Medicine in 1973, and was a founder member of the first Department of Cell Biology in the USA. In 1987-88 he spent a sabbatical leave in the laboratories of Drs. George Stark and Ian Kerr at the Imperial Cancer Research Laboratories funded by an American Cancer Society Scholar Grant, where he participated in early studies to elucidate the mechanisms of interferon action that helped lead to the discovery of the Jak/Stat pathway. Dr. Rosen is currently a Distinguished Service Professor and the C.C. Bell Professor of Molecular & Cellular Biology and Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine. He is the recipient of a prestigious MERIT award from the National Institutes of Health entitled, “Hormonal Regulation of Breast Cancer” currently in its thirty-fourth year of consecutive funding. His laboratory has authored 200 publications and book chapters dealing with hormonal regulation of gene expression, signal transduction, normal mammary gland development, breast cancer, transgenic animal models of breast and prostate cancer, mammary gland stem and progenitor cells, and noncoding RNAs. Dr. Rosen has been the recipient of the Endocrine Society Edwin B. Astwood Award and the Michael E. DeBakey, Excellence in Research Award.Soonmyung Paik, M.D. is a pathologist with training in molecular biology of breast cancer. He graduated from College of Medicine, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea in 1981 and, after his residency under Dr. Edwin Fisher at the pathology headquarters of the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project (NSABP), he joined Dr. Marc Lippman’s group at the National Cancer Institute as a post-doctoral fellow. Later he followed Dr. Lippman to the Lombardi Cancer Center, Georgetown University where he worked as a faculty member and director of tumor back core facility. He returned to the NSABP as the Director of the Division of Pathology in 1996. Since 2009 he has a joint appointment as the Distinguished Scientist in Medicine and the director of Samsung Cancer Research Institute, Seoul, South Korea.Dr. Paik is interested in developing predictive markers for treatment response in breast cancer through correlative science studies of tumor blocks procured from clinical trials. His research has been tightly linked to NSABP clinical trials. He has contributed to concept development and drafting of all trials conducted by the NSABP since 1996 and improved the tumor block collection rate from 40 percent to 80-90 percent since joining the NSABP. His division at the NSABP now maintains one of the largest annotated breast cancer tissue banks worldwide. He has contributed in elucidating the clinical role of HER2 in breast cancer since his post-doctoral fellowship by demonstrating that patients with increased expression of HER2 protein confers poor prognosis. He has also demonstrated that HER2 positive tumors are more responsive to doxorubicin containing regimen and thus helped to establish ACT as a baseline regimen for NSABP trials for HER2 positive breast cancer (Paik et al, JNCI 90:1361-70 and JNCI 92:1991-8, Romond et al, NEJM 353:1673-84). His lab in collaboration with Genomic Health Inc has developed a multi-gene based test called OncotypeDx that is now used in the community to predict prognosis and response to chemotherapy in node negative hormone receptor positive breast cancer (Paik et al, NEJM 351:2817-26, JCO 24:3726-34).