$25M gift to Brown U to accelerate cancer research at renamed center

Providence, R.I.-based Brown University received a $25 million gift from Pablo Legorreta, founder and CEO of Royalty Pharma, and his wife, Almudena, to transform the university's recently launched cancer care center, the university said Dec. 9. 

The university will rename the Cancer Center at Brown University, established in 2020, as the Legorreta Cancer Center. The gift will also position the center to work toward National Cancer Institute designation, the highest federal rating a center can achieve.

Wafik El-Deiry, MD, PhD, director of the Joint Program in Cancer Biology at Brown and Lifespan and associate dean for oncologic sciences, said with funding the center will be able to build a "critical mass" of investigators to do larger, more collaborative cancer-focused research projects.

The center also plans to bolster its clinical trials program, with the goal of expanding treatment options to patients. 

"In providing the funding to bring aboard first-class talent and launch promising new research programs, this gift brings us closer to realizing the dream of a world-class, federally recognized cancer center right here in the state of Rhode Island," said Christina Paxson, PhD, Brown University president. "We are deeply grateful to Pablo and Almudena Legorreta for their generous investment in the potential for cancer research at Brown to transform into treatments that will one day make a positive impact on patients and their families."

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