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The Mary Lasker Papers

Letter from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center to Mary Lasker pdf (102,349 Bytes) transcript of pdf
Letter from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center to Mary Lasker
Number of Image Pages:
2 (102,349 Bytes)
1977-11-29 (November 29, 1977)
Krim, Mathilde
Abreu, Sergio
Bancroft, Carter
Chudzio, Tadeusz
Colby, Clarence
Lin, Leo S.
Sanders, F. Kingsley
Stewart, William E. II
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
Lasker, Mary
Original Repository: Columbia University. Rare Book and Manuscript Library. Mary Lasker Papers
Reproduced with permission of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
Exhibit Category:
Cancer Wars
Box Number:
Unique Identifier:
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Physical Condition:
Series: Series I
SubSeries: Topical Files
SubSubSeries: Cancer
Folder: Cancer - Interferon, 1978
November 29, 1977
Dearest Mary:
Words can hardly express my gratitude for your continuing and selfless devotion to our cause in general, and now specifically to the development of new modalities of non-toxic cancer therapy based on the use of human interferon.
Your gift will make possible the development of a laboratory for the large scale production of human leukocyte interferon in the very near future. This, as you know, is essential both to basic research and clinical trials. Both sorts of investigation will be carried out at our Center. Several clinicians are eager and ready to evaluate the clinical potential of this material, alone, or in combination therapy, in several major human tumor systems. This work will be greatly facilitated by the solid base of laboratory activities in immunobiology and interferon system research already established at our Center. Fundamental investigations into the structure of the active molecules have been started and are already giving promising and far reaching results. They allow us to predict that industrial scale production of human interferon by bacteria carrying the DNA sequence for human interferon may be possible in the near future, or else that the interferon polypeptide itself may be chemically synthesized. Like clinical evaluation, the development of such production techniques depends on the availability now of large amounts of human interferon produced conventionally. I should point out that fortunately such basic research need not deprive the clinic of any material that could be administered to humans since there will inevitably be a fraction of production batches that will be found contaminated by cells from human carriers of the Hepatitis B antigen. Such batches of interferon would not be certifiable for clinical use but could be used for laboratory studies. So, the existence of the Swiss laboratory will provide a resource of inestimable value to all concerned, both at the bench and in the clinic - and will greatly contribute to the development of new non-toxic cancer therapies, and at the same time, bring closer the day when interferon production for general use can be based on less costly methods.
When that day comes, much of the credit will be yours and we will not forget it. The signatures of my colleagues, which accompany mine on this letter, express our common gratitude to you and dedication to our task.
With love,
Mathilde Krim, Ph.D.
Sergio Abreu, Ph.D.
Carter Bancroft, Ph.D.
Tadeusz Chudzio, Ph.D.
Clarence Colby, Ph.D.
Leo S. Lin, Ph.D.
F. Kingsley Sanders, D.Phil.
William E. Stewart II, Ph.D.
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