Dana-Farber researcher selected as 2016 Pew-Stewart Scholar

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The Pew Charitable Trusts and the Alexander and Margaret Stewart Trust announced the 2016 class of Pew-Stewart scholars for cancer research. Dana-Farber Cancer Institute researcher Stephanie K. Dougan, PhD, was one of five early-career cancer scientists chosen for this prestigious award.

The scientists from top research institutions in the United States were selected for their dedication to pursuing innovative leads aimed at finding a cure for cancer. Each will receive four years of flexible funding to conduct their work.

"I am honored to be part of the family of Pew Scholars. The Pew Foundation's awards to early stage investigators are critical for giving junior scientists like me a chance to be creative and explore new directions,” said Dougan, a researcher and assistant professor of microbiology and immunobiology at Dana-Farber. “My lab is developing new ways to convince the immune system to attack pancreatic cancer, and I am thankful to the Pew Foundation for their support.”

“Cancer is a devastating disease, causing pain for millions of patients and their loved ones across the world,” said Rebecca W. Rimel, president and CEO of The Pew Charitable Trusts. “We expect that these scientists and their cutting-edge work will contribute greatly to the fight against this illness.”

For three years, Pew has partnered with the Alexander and Margaret Stewart Trust to support early-career researchers. The initiative has allowed for the Pew Scholars Program in Biomedical Sciences, a three-decade-old scholarship program for promising young scientists, to expand its reach while also supporting an area of great need — cancer research. The 2016 Pew-Stewart scholars’ work includes studying what drives recurrence of medulloblastoma, an aggressive pediatric brain tumor, and engineering new immune therapies against pancreatic cancer.

“These scientists are truly exceptional — they meet our committee’s expectations for excellence and diligence in every way. Their efforts will be critical to unraveling the mysteries of cancer in the years to come,” said Peter M. Howley, M.D., chair of the Pew-Stewart National Advisory Committee.

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