New partnership with Morehouse School of Medicine on health equity
December 21, 2021By Victoria Brun
Mary Ellen Hackett
Manager, Communications Office
The Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research (FNL) and Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM) have announced a new strategic partnership to support the mutual exchange of training and research expertise, with a focus on research to improve cancer patient care through precision medicine.
“Morehouse School of Medicine’s mission is to train the next generation of scientists, clinicians, and healthcare professionals to advance health equity for all,” said James W. Lillard, PhD, MBA, senior associate dean, Research, Innovation & Commercialization at MSM. “This partnership will allow exploration of synergistic capabilities to advance health equity, precision medicine, including next generation sequencing and privacy preserving record linkage methods to provide personalized cancer care and secure datasets.”
MSM is a historically Black medical school in Atlanta, Georgia,and is among the nation’s leading educators of primary care physicians and was recently recognized as the top U.S. medical school for its social mission.
“Health disparities in the United States continue to be a major problem that requires much needed research and solutions,” said Len Freedman, PhD, FNLchief science officer. “As a national lab focused on cancer research and clinical care, FNL is very excited to collaborate on this critical issue with MSM. Each partner brings unique sets of expertise to advance our common mission.”
This partnership builds upon the FNL’s and MSM’s shared interest in furthering health equity in biomedical research and patient care. The institutions anticipate a number of collaborative activities as part of this partnership. The FNL plans to offer training opportunities for MSM medical, graduate, and undergraduate students. The partnership will also enable mutual visits, exchange of technical expertise and personnel,communication of career opportunities, and collaboration around future events, including workshops, seminars, and consortium.
Crystal Canja of the FNL’s Partnership Development Office explained that “this MOU is one of many steps that the FNL is taking to align with the NIH UNITE Initiative, which identifies and addresses structural racism within the NIH-supported and the greater scientific community.We look forward to working with MSM and supporting the Historical Black College and University community for many years to come.”