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    Memphis, Tennessee, October 12, 2009

    Michael Kastan, M.D., Ph.D., and Mary Relling, Pharm.D., of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, have been elected to the Institute of Medicine (IOM), a prestigious branch of the National Academy of Sciences.

    Kastan, the hospital’s Cancer Center director, and Relling, chair of St. Jude Pharmaceutical Sciences, are among 65 new members of the IOM this year. The election of Kastan and Relling brings the number of IOM members from St. Jude to six. St. Jude has one of the highest numbers of IOM members among U.S. children’s hospitals.

    To have two additional members of our faculty elected to the Institute of Medicine is a great honor for them and also for St. Jude,” said Dr. William E. Evans, St. Jude director and CEO. “As we continue to focus on finding cures for catastrophic diseases, it is accomplished and recognized faculty like Dr. Kastan and Dr. Relling who are leading the way.”

    Kastan’s research focuses on DNA damage and repair, tumor suppressor genes and causes of cancer related to genetic disposition and environmental contributions. Relling’s research focuses on pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics in children and how genome variability influences a child’s response to cancer chemotherapy.

    The IOM is an honorific organization that was established in 1970 to provide unbiased, evidence-based and authoritative advice concerning health and science policy concerning matters of biomedical science, medicine and health. A maximum of 65 new members are elected annually through a highly selective process that recognizes people who have made important contributions to the advancement of medical science, health care or public health. The approximately 1,600 current active members elect new members from among candidates nominated for their professional achievement and commitment to service.

    Other IOM members from St. Jude are Nobel Laureate Peter Doherty, Ph.D., Michael F. Tamer Chair of Biomedical Research; current director and CEO William E. Evans; former hospital director Arthur Nienhuis, M.D.; and Charles Sherr, M.D., Ph.D., Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and Genetics and Tumor Cell Biology co-chair.

    St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
    St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is internationally recognized for its pioneering work in finding cures and saving children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases. Founded by late entertainer Danny Thomas and based in Memphis, Tenn., St. Jude freely shares its discoveries with scientific and medical communities around the world. No family ever pays for treatments not covered by insurance, and families without insurance are never asked to pay. St. Jude is financially supported by ALSAC, its fundraising organization.