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Personalized Medicine Coalition Recognizes Kathy Giusti with Award for Leadership

Award to be presented November 6, 2013 highlights lifelong personalized medicine vision.

Washington, DC (August 8, 2013)

 — 

The Personalized Medicine Coalition (PMC) today announced that Ms. Kathy Giusti, Founder and CEO of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF), will receive the 2013 Leadership in Personalized Medicine Award for her inspirational work in advancing personalized medicine.

"Ms. Giusti’s seminal contribution to personalized medicine comes from her own experience as a patient with multiple myeloma. Her vision of blending philanthropy–funded research while employing sound drug development business practices enhances the likelihood of success in these endeavors. Her leadership, vision and personal commitment to this field will help generations of future patients,” stated Stephen Eck, M.D., Ph.D., Vice President, Astellas, who nominated Giusti for this year’s recognition.

Kathy Giusti is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) and the Multiple Myeloma Research Consortium (MMRC). Shortly after being diagnosed with multiple myeloma, an incurable blood cancer, she founded the MMRF in 1998 to stimulate innovative multiple myeloma research and drug discovery. She then founded the MMRC, enabling leading research institutions to work with industry to speed the discovery and development of effective new treatments for multiple myeloma.

In June, Giusti was recognized at the White House as an “Open Science Champion of Change” for programs that accelerate the pace of biomedical research by promoting data sharing via open access platforms. Under Giusti’s leadership, the MMRF built a collaboration with the Broad Institute and the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), which led to the first complete sequencing of the myeloma genome and pre-publication access to the data via a public portal. More recently, the MMRF launched the landmark MMRF CoMMpass study, a longitudinal study that is tracking the genomic and clinical data of 1,000 multiple myeloma patients over at least five years, and placing all of the data into an open access platform.

Giusti graduated from Harvard Business School with an M.B.A. in general management and began her career with Merck & Co. In 2011 Giusti was named to TIME 100 List of world’s most influential people.

“I have known Kathy for more than 15 years and find her to be truly inspirational. No other individual has had as significant an impact in the research and treatment of multiple myeloma as Ms. Giusti,” said William S Dalton, PhD., M.D., Director, Personalized Medicine Institute, Moffitt Cancer Center and CEO, M2Gen, who also nominated Giusti for this year’s award. “Ms. Giusti’s business acumen and passionate desire to find cures have established an unprecedented approach to multiple myeloma research, education and funding that has changed the landscape for generations to come. Indeed, Kathy’s success has been an inspiration and model for many patient advocacy groups and foundations dedicated to eliminating death and suffering due to many diseases. Her contributions exemplify the very purpose of the PMC Leadership in Personalized Medicine Award,” continued Dalton.

“The PMC’s recognition of our innovative approach to advancing the promise of personalized medicine means a great deal to all of us at the MMRF,” said Ms. Giusti. “I am deeply humbled by this honor, and accept this prestigious award on behalf of the entire team and our many visionary partners, who have enabled our success.”

The PMC Award recognizes an individual whose contributions in science, business, and/or policy have helped advance the frontiers of personalized medicine. Previous recipients of the award include Dr. Janet Woodcock, Director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Dr. Elizabeth G. Nabel, Director of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute at the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Ralph Synderman, Chancellor Emeritus of Duke University, Health and Human Services Secretary Michael Leavitt, Brook Byers of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Dr. William Dalton, President and CEO of the Moffitt Cancer Center, Dr. Leroy Hood, President and co-founder of the Institute for Systems Biology and Randal W. Scott, Ph.D., Founder, Genomic Health Inc. and current chairman and CEO, InVitae Corporation.

The award will be presented at the Personalized Medicine Conference, which will be held at Harvard Medical School on November 6, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts, and at which Ms. Giusti will deliver an address on her vision of personalized medicine. The Personalized Medicine Conference is co-hosted and presented by Partners HealthCare Center for Personalized Genetic Medicine (PCPGM), Harvard Business School and Harvard Medical School. The Conference is organized by PCPGM in association with the American Association for Cancer Research and the Personalized Medicine Coalition. The distinctive collaboration of this group of organizations reflects the diversity, depth and breadth of the Conference’s program.

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Contact:
Chris Wells
cwells@personalizedmedicinecoalition.org
Phone: 202-589-1770

About the Personalized Medicine Coalition:
The Personalized Medicine Coalition (PMC), representing innovators, scientists, patients, providers and payers, promotes the understanding and adoption of personalized medicine concepts, services and products to benefit patients and the health system. For more information about PMC, visit www.personalizedmedicinecoalition.org.

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