On Wednesday, December 18, 2013 the Fox Chase Cancer Center held a Special Tea to celebrate the dedication of the BCRL to honor Irma H. Russo, MD.
Dr. Irma H. Russo was born in San Rafael, Mendoza, Argentina and earned her medical degree from the University National of Cuyo. She came to the United States in 1973 with her husband Jose and for the next 46 years they continued their research on breast cancer.
In 1973 she and Jose founded the Breast Cancer Research Laboratory.
Irma was a pioneer in identifying the mechanisms of breast cancer prevention as mediated by pregnancy. She developed a hormonal treatment for prevention of the disease using Human Chorionic Gonadotropin. Recently, she worked on replacement of the whole hormone by a short amino acid peptide.
The collaboration between Jose and Irma was so deep it was, at times, impossible to determine where one ended and the other began. Together they published five books, over 200 research articles and raised more than $30 million in funding during her tenure at FCCC. Irma had a very distinguished career in research and remained devoted to the mission of understanding the cellular and molecular basis of breast cancer.
She will be remembered for her good nature by her many friends, colleagues, and over 50 MDs and PhDs she trained.
During the dedication the following speakers presented testimonial of her achievements.
Jose Russo, MD (Director, Breast Cancer Research Laboratory)
Patricia A. Russo, MFA
Robert Beck, MD (Senior Vice President, Chief Academic Officer,Chief Medical Officer)
[From left to right: Lori Goldstein, M; Elin Sigurdson, MD, Leena Hilakivi-Clarke, PhD, Patricia A Russo, MFA; Jose Russo, MD, Robert Beck, MD, Jonathan Chernoff PhD and Richard I. Fisher, MD (President and CEO, Fox Chase Cancer Center-Temple Health)]
Jonathan Chernoff, MD, PhD (Senior Vice President, Chief Scientific Officer)
Leena Hilakivi-Clarke, PhD (Professor of Oncology, Georgetown University)
Lori Goldstein, MD (Director, the Naomi and Phil Lippincott, Breast Evaluation Center; Leader, Breast Cancer Clinical Research)
Elin Sigurdson, MD, PhD (Chief of the Division of General Surgery,Head of Surgical Research)