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The University of Tennessee Health Science Center
Receives $902,873 Donation from the Late J.S. Allen
Memphis, Tenn. (June 27, 2012) – The University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC), has received a donation of $902,873 to further its efforts in the areas of cancer, multiple sclerosis, and cardiovascular research thanks to the late J.S. Allen, a third-generation store owner of Saltillo, Tenn.
The owner and operator of Allen’s Grocery for all of his working life, he also spent more than 60 years in public service, including serving as mayor of Saltillo for 30 years. Additionally, Allen served on the board of the Hardin County Hospital, now the Hardin County Medical Center in Savannah, Tenn. He passed away on February 17, 2011, at the age of 84. Bobbi D. Allen, his wife, passed away in 1999.
Because the causes of multiple sclerosis, cardiovascular disease, and cancer were important to Allen, he bequeathed this gift to UTHSC to help find a cure, especially since the son of the executor of his estate—Jimmy B. Hopper, MD,-- is an alumnus of the UTHSC College of Medicine (’90). Allen’s generosity will be honored and is deeply appreciated by the Health Science Center through the following initiatives:
Cardiovascular Research at UTHSC
An endowment fund of $300,957.59 will be created for the J.S. and Bobbi Allen Fellowship in Cardiovascular Research. This fellowship will allow talented young physicians in training to undertake serious biomedical research. Monies of this endowment will fund the training of promising medical students, residents, or fellows for one year in medical research.
Cancer Research at UTHSC
Another $300,957.59 will be used to establish the J.S. and Bobbi Allen Gene Expression Analysis Laboratory and support the acquisition of research equipment for cancer research at UTHSC. The nCounter from Nanostring Technology will be purchased for a cost of approximately $225,000. The remainder of Allen’s donation in this area (approximately $75,000) will be used to support cancer research projects that will employ this technology in the studies of human glioma, melanoma, and more.
“The gift will enable us to purchase the nCounter from
Nanostring Technology that allows direct measurement of individual RNA
molecules and provides a digital signal,” said Lawrence Pfeffer, PhD, Muirhead
Professor of Pathology and director of the Center for Cancer Research at UTHSC.
“In preliminary studies, we have used
this approach to define the expression of non-coding genes in tissue biopsies
from cancer patients in order to identify gene signatures that are relevant for
the patient response to chemotherapy. The basic premise is that we will be able
to define a specific gene expression profile that is predictive of
predisposition to melanoma or of melanoma progression. This
technology will now be available to all researchers at UTHSC to identify gene
signatures in cancer as well as in other human diseases.”
Multiple Sclerosis Research at UTHSC
With the remaining $300,957.59, the J.S. and Bobbi Allen Fund for Multiple Sclerosis Research will be established to support research on the disease, which the late Mrs. Allen suffered from, at UTHSC’s Neuroscience Institute.
“This generous donation from the Allen family is an example of the critical value of the community in support of UT’s research mission. This gift will help us reach our goal of contributing to the cure for multiple sclerosis, a devastating, progressive neurological disease,” said Michael Levin, MD,professor in the Departments of Neurology, and Anatomy and Neurobiology at UTHSC.
Allen’s contribution to these three areas of research will continue to give back for many years to come and will result in the improvement of the quality of life of Tennessee residents and others through research and medical practice.
As the flagship statewide academic health system, the mission of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) is to bring the benefits of the health sciences to the achievement and maintenance of human health, with a focus on the citizens of Tennessee and the region, by pursuing an integrated program of education, research, clinical care, and public service. In 2011, UT Health Science Center celebrated its centennial: 100 years advancing the future of health care. Offering a broad range of postgraduate training opportunities, the main UTHSC campus is located in Memphis and includes six colleges: Allied Health Sciences, Dentistry, Graduate Health Sciences, Medicine, Nursing and Pharmacy. The UTHSC campus in Knoxville includes a College of Medicine, College of Pharmacy, and an Allied Health Sciences unit. In addition, the UTHSC Chattanooga campus includes a College of Medicine and an Allied Health Sciences unit. Since its founding in 1911, UTHSC has educated and trained more than 53,000 health care professionals on campuses and in health care facilities across the state. For more information, visit www.uthsc.edu.
This study quantifies the economic impact of the UTHSC on the economy of the state of Tennessee for FY2010.
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