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Martine Piccart-Gebhart, M.D., Ph.D., Honored for International Contributions to Breast Cancer Research

December 7, 2009

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SAN ANTONIO – Martine Piccart-Gebhart, M.D., Ph.D., professor of oncology at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) and director of the Medicine Department at the Institut Jules Bordet, in Brussels, Belgium, will receive the 2009 William L. McGuire Memorial Lectureship at the 32nd 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.

Piccart-Gebhart is the principal or co-principal investigator of many clinical trials, including HERA, MINDACT and ALTTO. She is the co-founder and chair of the Breast International Group (BIG), created in 1996 to facilitate, plan and oversee international breast cancer clinical trials, and TRANSBIG, a European Commission-supported translational research consortium that complements BIG’s clinical research network. BIG brings together 41 collaborative groups from around the world and has more than 30 clinical trials under its umbrella; TRANSBIG represents 39 institutions in 21 countries.

“Dr. Piccart-Gebhart is a driving force of clinical and translational research,” said C. Kent Osborne, M.D., co-director of the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium and director of the Baylor College of Medicine Dan L. Duncan Cancer Center. “Her work with BIG and TRANSBIG brings together the best science with the newest technology around the world.”

Piccart-Gebhart will give a lecture entitled, “International Breast Cancer Research: Launching an Expedition to the Moon,” on Saturday, Dec. 12, 2009, at 11:15 a.m. CT, during the 32nd Annual San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. This meeting, encompassing the full spectrum of breast cancer research, will be held Dec. 9-13, 2009, at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, San Antonio, Texas.

Paolo Paoletti, M.D., Senior Vice President and Head of the Oncology R&D Unit at GlaxoSmithKline, said “In this new era of genomic-based research, we can’t understate what Dr. Martine Piccart-Gebhart has done to advance international patient participation in clinical trials. Her leading efforts have helped broaden our understanding of breast cancer across diverse patient groups. We join everyone in the research community in congratulating her on this well-deserved honor.”

Piccart-Gebhart received her medical doctorate in 1978 and her internal medicine certification in 1983 from the Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium. She earned her oncology qualification in 1985 from the Division of Oncology at the New York University Medical Center. She became certified in European medical oncology in London in 1989, and earned her Ph.D. from the Université Libre de Bruxelles in 1993. She is a member of the Académie ryale de Médecine de Belgique. As well, she serves on the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Board and is the immediate past president of the European Organization for the Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC).

Piccart-Gebhart has served as author or co-author of more than 325 scientific publications in peer-reviewed journals. She has received numerous awards in recognition of her achievements in the clinical research field, including a Freedom to Discover grant from Bristol-Myers Squibb in 2005. In 2006, she was awarded the 14th Claude Jacquillat Award for achievements in clinical oncology and the ESMO-GSK Lifetime Achievement Award in Breast Cancer Research (to BIG). Piccart received the Miami Breast Cancer Conference Award of Excellence for 2007 and the ECCO Clinical Research Award in Berlin in September of 2009. She was a member of the AACR Annual Meeting Program Committee in 2007 and currently serves on the AACR Clinical Cancer Research Committee.

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About the William L. McGuire Memorial Lectureship

Dr. William L. McGuire, along with Dr. 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 Dr. 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.

About the CTRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium

The mission of the CTRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium is to produce a unique and comprehensive scientific meeting that encompasses the full spectrum of breast cancer research, facilitating the rapid translation of new knowledge into better care for breast cancer patients. The Cancer Therapy & Research Center (CTRC) at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), and Baylor College of Medicine are joint sponsors of the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. This collaboration utilizes the clinical strengths of the CTRC and Baylor, and the AACR’s scientific prestige in basic, translational and clinical cancer research to expedite the delivery of the latest scientific advances to the clinic. The 32nd annual symposium is expected to draw more than 8,500 participants from more than 90 countries.

About GlaxoSmithKline

GlaxoSmithKline, one of the world’s leading research-based pharmaceutical and health care companies, is dedicated to producing innovations in cancer that will make profound differences in the lives of patients. Through GSK’s “bench to bedside” approach, we are transforming the way treatments are discovered and developed, resulting in one of the most robust pipelines in the oncology sector. Our worldwide research in oncology includes partnerships with more than 160 cancer centers. GSK is developing a new generation of patient focused cancer treatments in prevention, supportive care, chemotherapy and targeted therapies.

Media Contact:

Megan Davies
(267) 646-0612

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