Columbia University and NewYork-Presbyterian announced that Florence Irving and her late husband, Herbert Irving, have given $700 million to the two institutions to advance research and clinical programs for the treatment of cancer. The Irvings’ historic gift will have a profound impact on research and clinical care at what is already one of the world’s preeminent academic medical centers at a time when new scientific tools and techniques are allowing researchers and clinicians to better understand how cancer begins and grows—and how to fight its spread.
This donation will help Columbia and -NewYork-Presbyterian recruit basic scientists, physician-scientists, and clinicians dedicated to producing a range of innovations in patient care, including improved efficacy of radiation therapy, new surgical approaches, and the development of a variety of new therapeutic options for patients. Facilities also will be expanded at the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, where more than 4,000 new cancer patients are treated each year.
The Irvings’ extraordinary philanthropy will impact a wide range of scientific disciplines, including cancer genomics, immunology, computational biology, pathology, and biomedical engineering. A key focus will be to further advance cancer research and clinical care in Columbia’s Precision Medicine Initiative, which, in partnership with NewYork-Presbyterian, is exploring the genetic and genomic basis of cancer and other life-altering diseases.
“Herbert and I have always been proud to help the terrific doctors at Columbia and NewYork-Presbyterian,” said Florence Irving. “It meant everything to him to be able to support world-class research and caregiving that makes a difference in people’s lives. I am honored, as he always was, to be associated with these great institutions and the special people who make them what they are.”