Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center

Top UM Researcher Honored for His Work

01.24.2005

The Israel Cancer Association, USA, is honoring Joseph D. Rosenblatt, M.D., of the University of Miami Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center for his work in cancer research and his ambitious support of his colleagues in Israel. Dr. Rosenblatt is the associate director of clinical and translational research, chief of the Division of Hematology/Oncology at UM/Sylvester, and professor of medicine at the University of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine. At the ICA USA gala on Wednesday, February 9, at the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, Dr. Rosenblatt will be presented with the seventh annual Emanuel G. Rosenblatt Award for Scientific Achievement. (Dr. Rosenblatt is not related to the late Emanuel Rosenblatt.)

Rosenblatt was selected for the honor for both his seminal cancer research and for organizing the first ever Joint American-Israeli Conference on Cancer, March 16 to 18, at the Inbal Hotel in Jerusalem. “We believe he’s doing more than anyone else to help cancer research in Israel,” said Ronni Epstein, executive director of the Israel Cancer Association, USA. “We realized the significance of the joint American Israeli conference and we knew we had to support it. We support cancer research in Israel and we can’t think of anything more important than this, which will bring over the top scientists in America to collaborate with those in Israel.”

The ICA USA has raised more than $8 million to support Israeli cancer scientists in just the last eight years, and the Israel Cancer Association has been supporting cancer research at home since 1952. “In Israel, ICA is sort of like the American Cancer Society here,” said Epstein. The ICA is the leading health-related charitable organization in Israel. ICA USA is helping to sponsor the Joint American-Israeli Conference on Cancer, along with the Israel Cancer Association in Israel, the Braman Family Foundation and the Flight Attendant Medical Research Institute.

The landmark conference is intended to foster enduring collaboration between physicians and scientists in the two countries, and also to help Israel during a time of need, given the ongoing tensions in the Middle East. “Part of our own personal impetus is, we feel that over the past few years that Israel, which is pound-for-pound a relative research powerhouse, has been shortchanged by the lack of convention visitors,” said Rosenblatt. “So the conference is interested in fostering ties and recognizing the contributions that Israelis make to the international cancer effort and creating real opportunities for the development of new therapeutic, prognostic and diagnostic approaches, based on interactions between scientists in this country and in Israel.”

The first-ever JAICC conference will host more than 50 experts from more than a dozen institutions in the U.S. and Israel, including Avram Hershko, M.D., Ph.D., of the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, Israel. Dr. Hershko was one of three researchers honored with the 2004 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the discovery of ubiquitin-mediated protein degradation, along with Aaron Ciechanover, M.D., D.Sc., also at Technion, and Irwin A. Rose, Ph.D., of the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia. Dr. Ciechanover’s work has also been supported by the ICA USA.

Along with Dr. Rosenblatt, the key organizers are Hyam I. Levitsky, M.D., from the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, and Robert Korngold, Ph.D., from the Cancer Center at Hackensack University Medical Center in Hackensack, New Jersey.

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