See the Award Announcement for more information about the Award and its latest recipient. The following was abstracted from the announcement.
Dr. Karen Knudsen of the Kimmel Cancer Center received the Ron Ross Award at the 5th Pacific Rim Breast and Prostate Cancer Meeting, held in Kingscliff, Australia, May 3-7, 2011. Dr. Ron Ross was the Flora L. Thornton Chairman of Preventive Medicine and the Catherine and Joseph Aresty Professor of Preventive Medicine and Urology at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California. Under his leadership, the Department of Preventive Medicine became the leading department in this field in the United States. Ron was also Director of the Los Angeles Cancer Surveillance Program, the cancer registry of Los Angeles County, from 1987. A respected pioneer in research on the relationship between hormones and cancer, Ron died of brain cancer on April 21 2006 at the age of 57. The Ron Ross Award acknowledges Ron’s remarkable contribution in the field of hormonal carcinogenesis and also recognizes significant contributions by others in the field.
This year’s Award was presented to Professor Karen E Knudsen from the Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University. Her postdoctoral studies focused on the cross talk between androgen receptor signaling and proliferative control mechanisms in prostate cancer, and she was first to discover that interplay between hormone receptor networks and the cell cycle machinery is frequently perturbed in prostate cancer, and promotes loss of proliferative control. She was recruited to the NCI-designated Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University in 2007, where she is a Professor of Cancer Biology, Urology, and Radiation Oncology. Recent pivotal findings from her group relate to critical co-factors that drive castrate resistant prostate cancer, novel therapeutic targets for treatment, and intricate mechanisms which impinge on androgen receptor function that contribute to the lethality of disease. Most recently, her group has provided seminal evidence that the retinoblastoma tumor suppressor pathway plays a critical role in the progression of prostate cancer that could be exploited to more efficiently treat advanced disease.