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Union Helps Raise $90,000 For Research at Fox Chase Cancer Center

PHILADELPHIA (December 15, 1999) -- Members and friends of the International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Asbestos Workers Local 14 raised $90,000 for mesothelioma research at Fox Chase Cancer Center. The gift was presented at the 5th Annual Mesothelioma Fund Golf Outing this Fall.

Asbestos workers and their families are at high risk for certain lung diseases due to their exposure to asbestos. Mesothelioma, a type of lung cancer, is one of the most deadly occupational diseases and is directly related to the inhalation of loose asbestos fibers.

In an effort to fight this disease, the family of longtime Local 14 member Hank Vaughn established a special fund for cancer research as a memorial to Mr. Vaughn after his death from mesothelioma in 1991. The officers and members of Local 14, along with their employers, joined in this effort and together they created the Mesothelioma Fund at Fox Chase Cancer Center. Four cents per hour for every hour worked in the insulation industry is also donated to the Fund.

The Fund supports the work of researchers like Joseph R. Testa, Ph.D., who directs the molecular genetics program at Fox Chase. The goal of Dr. Testa's research is to identify genetic changes, particularly early molecular alterations, that are characteristic of mesothelioma and may lead to the development of new and more effective ways to diagnose and treat patients.

Fox Chase Cancer Center is one of 37 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the nation. The Center's activities include basic and clinical research; prevention, detection and treatment of cancer; and community outreach programs.

Fox Chase Cancer Center, part of the Temple University Health System, is one of the leading cancer research and treatment centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as one of the nation’s first cancer hospitals, Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. Fox Chase researchers have won the highest awards in their fields, including two Nobel Prizes. Fox Chase physicians are also routinely recognized in national rankings, and the Center’s nursing program has received the Magnet recognition for excellence four consecutive times. Today, Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach.  For more information, call 1-888-FOX CHASE or (1-888-369-2427).

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