Lyda Hill Pledges $50M To University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Moon Shots Program

Well, she’s gone and done it again. Lyda Hill just pledged $50 million to the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Moon Shots Program.

Lyda Hill (File photo)

Lyda Hill (File photo)

“We’re astounded by Lyda Hill’s incredible generosity and humbled by her commitment to cancer patients and their families through this truly transformative gift,” said Ronald DePinho, M.D., president of MD Anderson. “Its broad application across the cancer care continuum of prevention, detection, treatment and survivorship will play a significant role in the success of the entire Moon Shots Program, especially in the areas of early detection, risk assessment and the development of more effective treatments for multiple cancer types.”

What are “Moon Shots”? No, they’re not a new cocktail nor a video game. It’s “an unprecedented, comprehensive assault on cancer.”

The program is made up of six teams of MD Anderson professionals with the focus on the following eight cancers:

  • acute myeloid leukemia (AML)/myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS),
  • chronic lymphocytic leukemia,
  • melanoma,
  • lung cancer,
  • prostate cancer, and
  • triple-negative breast and high-grade serous ovarian cancers.

Lyda’s gift will “support high-priority flagship projects including:

  • the lung cancer team’s efforts to develop mire reliable, low-cost screenings that can be available in community clinics, including blood-based biomarkers to detect the disease at its earliest stages and
  • the breast/ovarian cancer team’s integrated program to screen patients for BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic mutations and to prescribe new personalized therapies.

“I’m excited about the Moon Shots Program,” said Hill. “It represents a different direction for research that crosses disciplines and offers new hope for breaking cancer’s codes. I’m pleased to offer my support to this historic effort.”

In honor of Lyda’s generosity, “the institution will name the Lyda Hill Cancer Prevention Center.”

The Moon Shots Program will cost $3 billion in the first 10 years.

Santa Claus had better watch out. Lyda is giving him a run for his money when it comes to being the #1 gift giver.

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