People of Providence - Meet Bernard A. Fox, Ph.D.
Meet Bernard A. Fox, Ph.D.
- Chief, Laboratory of Molecular and Tumor Immunology
- Robert W. Franz Cancer Research Center
- Earle A. Chiles Research Institute
- Providence Cancer Institute
How are Providence research labs fighting COVID-19?
Providence Cancer Institute is uniquely poised to help develop a vaccine against the virus that causes COVID-19. My colleague Rom Leidner, M.D., co-medical director of Providence Head and Neck Cancer Program, and I are leading a team that is using a person's DNA and immune system to develop this new vaccine.
Why did your team decide to develop this vaccine?
Providence researchers made a conscious decision not to stand on the sidelines. Providence Cancer Institute has a track record of successful bench-to-bedside research. Our experience creating cancer vaccines helps us understand how to create a COVID-19 vaccine.
When will Providence begin a COVID-19 clinical trial?
We have applied to the Food and Drug Administration for a first-in-human clinical trial. While we await FDA approval, we're developing the vaccine in our labs and will launch a phase I clinical trial as soon as we receive approval. If all goes well, we expect to launch the phase II clinical trial this fall.
Why does philanthropy matter to your work?
Philanthropy allows us to start a project faster and fill gaps that grants won't fund. Our current work on the COVID-19 vaccine is a perfect example of that. Time is too precious on this. Because our donors generously support our cancer immunotherapy work, we can move quickly to help save lives. We are very grateful.
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