The gift is the largest in the history of the cancer center, which brings together the pancreas cancer laboratory, clinical expertise already in place at Johns Hopkins, and cutting-edge research to improve patient care. The funds will enable the newly renamed Skip Viragh Center for Pancreas Cancer Clinical Research and Patient Care to expand its clinical programs, develop promising new ideas in pancreas cancer care, and support new research.
Pancreas cancer, one of the most lethal forms of the disease, is the fourth leading cause of cancer death. Only 5 percent of patients survive five years after diagnosis.
"We believe investing in Johns Hopkins expertise will have a significant impact on its scientists' ability to conquer this disease," said Viragh's sister, Katherine. "Losing a loved one to pancreas cancer is devastating, and our hope is that the [new facility] will help make the world a better place for cancer patients."