We Care Fund 2022 Faculty Seed Grants Awarded

The We Care Fund for Medical Innovation and Research Committee has selected the recipients of this year’s We Care awards.

Mandana Kamgar, MD, MPH (PI), along with Thomas McFall, PhD (co-PI), has been awarded the New Collaboration Grant ($100,000) for the project titled, Utilizing experimental systems approaches for personalized medicine in pancreatic cancer. Their study focuses on pancreatic cancer and in particular those patients carrying KRAS G12R mutation, which represents ~20% of PDAC patients.

Kirkwood Pritchard, Jr., PhD (PI) has been awarded the Matthew J. Riese, MD, PhD Promising Pilot Grant ($50,000) for the project titled, H1N1 Seasonal Flu Induces ARDS by Destructive Cycle. The project is focused on developing a novel rat model of seasonal flu and identifying virus-independent mechanisms of severe influenza infection that induce acute lung injury (ALI) and acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS).

Dr. Riese was a native of Wisconsin and a graduate of the Medical Scientist Training Program of the Medical College of Wisconsin. Following training in Internal Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital and Hematology-Oncology at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, he returned to his alma mater where he established a cutting-edge translational program in solid tumor immunotherapy. Beloved by his colleagues for his wit and sagacity, this We Care Grant honors the memory of Dr. Riese, his legacy of scientific achievement and his love of medicine.

The We Care Fund for Medical Innovation and Research, led by a devoted committee of community members and made possible by generous philanthropic contributions, is committed to improving and enhancing medical care in the Milwaukee-area and has been steadfast in its support of Department of Surgery faculty to create innovative therapies and clinical programs that benefit patients.