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Michael Schug
IU Simon Cancer Center

Last modified: Friday, December 10, 2010

George Sledge Jr. honored for international contributions to breast cancer research

December 10, 2010

INDIANAPOLIS -- George W. Sledge Jr., a nationally recognized pioneer in the development of novel therapies for breast cancer, will receive the 2010 William L. McGuire Memorial Lecture Award at the 33rd Annual CTRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.

Supported by GlaxoSmithKline Oncology (GSK) since its inception in 1992, this honor acknowledges distinguished internationally recognized researchers for their significant contributions to breast cancer research.

George Sledge

Dr. George Sledge

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Sledge is the Ballve-Lantero Professor of Oncology and professor of medicine and pathology at the Indiana University School of Medicine, and a physician / researcher at the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center. He is also co-director of the the IU Simon Cancer Center's breast program. Sledge specializes in the study and treatment of breast cancer, and his research specifically focuses on molecular and tumor biology, growth factors and anti-angiogenic therapy. He has chaired several nationwide clinical trials involving new therapies for breast cancer.

"Dr. Sledge's work developing novel therapies to treat women with breast cancer has improved the lives of countless cancer patients," said C. Kent Osborne, co-director of the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium and director of the Baylor College of Medicine Dan L. Duncan Cancer Center. "The selection of Dr. Sledge is even more appropriate since he was one of the first medical oncology fellows to graduate the new fellowship training program at the University of Texas Health Science Center Division of Medical Oncology, established by Dr. McGuire as division director in the late 1970s. We congratulate Dr. Sledge on this fitting honor."

Sledge will give a lecture entitled, "What Would Bill Do? Channeling Your Inner McGuire," at 11:15 a.m. (CT) Saturday, Dec. 11 during the 33rd Annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. This symposium, encompassing the full spectrum of breast cancer research, will be held Dec. 8-12, 2010, at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, San Antonio.

Paolo Paoletti, senior vice president and head of the oncology R&D unit at GlaxoSmithKline, said: "Dr. Sledge has been a true visionary and pioneer in the progression of pathway-related treatments for breast cancer and other diseases. His work with HER2-positive, anti-angiogenesis treatment helped herald a new era in the treatment of breast cancer, and millions of patients have benefitted from this advancement in science. Admirably, all of Dr. Sledge's contributions to research were done with a unique attention and commitment for patients' feelings and needs, which drive everything he does. This award is befitting of such a tremendous scientist and supporter of patient care."

Sledge joined the Indiana University School of Medicine faculty in 1983, after completing his residency at St. Louis University and his fellowship at the University of Texas, San Antonio. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Wisconsin and his medical degree from Tulane University.

He holds many honors including the Jill Rose Award -- Breast Cancer Research Foundation (2007) and the 2006 Komen Foundation Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction. Sledge has been listed among "America's Top Doctors" as well as "America's Top Doctors for Cancer."

Sledge is the current president of ASCO and has been an active member of the AACR since 1988. He has served as a breast cancer committee leader with the Hoosier Oncology Group. He has served as chair of the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group and in various capacities for The Breast Cancer Intergroup. He was secretary (1997-1998) and a board of trustees member (1995-1998) of the Indiana Medical Oncology Society. Sledge has published extensively in the area of breast cancer research, and has served as editor-in-chief of Clinical Breast Cancer.

About the William L. McGuire Memorial Lectureship

William L. McGuire, along with Charles A. Coltman, founded the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium in 1977. The William L. McGuire Memorial Lectureship was established in 1992 to commemorate the significant contributions of McGuire to our understanding of breast cancer biology and treatment. His research played a major role in introducing estrogen receptor assays on breast tumor tissue as a guide to treatment decisions for women with breast cancer. Breast cancer patients everywhere now receive these tests. The lecturer is selected by the SABCS Executive and Planning Committees from persons nominated by distinguished researchers in the field.