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University of Rochester Reaps $4M Gift for Cancer Genomics

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – The University of Rochester has received a $4 million donation from the James P. Wilmot Foundation to fund the recruitment of a senior researcher in cancer genomics and to cover startup costs for the scientist's lab.

The investment is part of a $30 million research-focused campaign at UR Medicine to fund the new Wilmot Cancer Institute, which will consolidate all of the university's cancer research under one organization, UR said Saturday. The new grant will create the Wilmot Distinguished Professorship in Cancer Genomics.

UR launched the new cancer institute last week, and on Monday said it has opened the new UR Medicine Comprehensive Breast Care at Pluta facility, which will house the university's multidisciplinary breast cancer program.

UR decided to transition the pre-existing Wilmot Cancer Center into the new Wilmot Cancer Institute structure as a response to recent changes in the university's cancer program, including expansions of its facilities, the reorganization of its research teams into four areas, and increasing numbers of in-patient visits.

UR Medicine said the strategy it has developed for the Wilmot Cancer Institute will enable all of its oncologists and patients to access genomics and advanced diagnostic testing for certain cancers, clinical trials, weekly tumor board sessions, UR's electronic health records system, and other services.

"In a field that’s advancing as rapidly as cancer, it’s a tremendous advantage to have researchers and oncologists working together in the same facilities," UR President Joel Seligman said in a statement. "New research findings quickly make their way into clinical decision making."