Mark Levine named first chair in breast cancer research


[img_inline align=”right” src=”” caption=”Mark Levine”]Professor of medicine Mark Levine is the first holder of the Buffett Taylor Chair in Breast Cancer Research.

Levine will conduct independent research and clinical trials in breast cancer, evaluate the use of innovative methods to improve communication between physicians and women with breast cancer, and research methods to improve the use of clinical practice guidelines in the care of women with breast cancer.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in Canadian women and the leading cause of cancer deaths, after lung cancer.

“Mark's research has greatly improved the quality of life for women with breast cancer and this chair is a significant investment to continue the work of the Faculty of Health Sciences in breast cancer research,” says Russell Joffe, dean and vice-president, health sciences.

Levine is a professor of medicine and clinical epidemiology & biostatistics, as well as director of the Institute for Clinical Research in the Faculty of Health Sciences. He is internationally recognized for his leadership in breast cancer clinical care and research, and is a recognized world leader for his work with breast cancer patients who have developed problems with thromboembolism. Levine served as CEO of the Cancer Care Ontario Hamilton Regional Cancer Centre from 1992 to 1999.

Levine was recently awarded the National Cancer Institute of Canada/ Eli Lilly O. Harold Warwick Prize awarded annually to a Canadian investigator whose studies have led to significant advances in cancer control within the past decade.

The Buffett Taylor Chair in Breast Cancer Research was created with an endowment from Ed Buffett, president and chief executive officer of Buffett Taylor & Associates Ltd. Buffett announced his $1 million commitment to this chair at the University's fundraising campaign launch last September.

The Chair in Breast Cancer Research will also be supported by a gift of $100,000 pledged by Anthony Fell, a long-time friend of McMaster University and supporter of McMaster Changing Tomorrow Today campaign. Mr. Fell is chair and chief executive officer, RBC Dominion Securities, and deputy chair of the Royal Bank of Canada.

“We are most fortunate to have among our friends and supporters community and business leaders like Ed Buffett and Tony Fell who, through these munificent personal donations, will help to improve the lives of women with breast cancer,” says University President Peter George. “It is also our good fortune to have at the helm of these research initiatives Dr. Mark Levine, whose leadership in clinical care and work with breast cancer patients is well known and respected internationally. Endowed chairs such as the Buffett Taylor Chair in Breast Cancer Research enhance our position as Canada's premiere educational and research university.”

Endowed research and academic chairs provide income in perpetuity to the department in which they are held. The Buffett gift will be matched by the University and invested, with the income used to support the salary and research activities of the chair holder.

Levine will present the O. Harold Warwick Lecture Breast Cancer today at 4 p.m. at McMaster University Health Sciences Centre, Room 1A4. He will speak on A Model for the Evolution of Cancer Control.