William H. Danforth, M.D., chancellor emeritus and vice chair of the board of trustees at Washington University in St. Louis, will serve as chair of an independent review panel that will conduct a comprehensive review of oversight and monitoring of clinical trials at the Institute for Human Gene Therapy at the University, according to President Judith Rodin.
Dr. Rodin announced her intention to appoint a committee of ". . . distinguished research scientists with a wealth of academic expertise and relevant experience . . . ." unaffiliated with Penn on January 21, 2000. The committee will report directly to her.
Joining Dr. Danforth on the external review panel are:
Dr. Rodin said that the committee will have ". . . a broad mandate to conduct a comprehensive review of every aspect of IHGT's procedures for oversight and monitoring of clinical trials." She spelled out the charges of the external review panel in a letter to the Senate Subcommittee, the full text of which appears in this issue.
"We intend for our research programs, particularly those involving human subjects, to meet the highest standards," Dr. Rodin said. "Nothing less is acceptable."
Dr. Rodin said that the external review panel is one of two reviews underway at Penn designed ". . . to achieve this goal and to respond to the important concerns raised by federal regulators." She said that ". . . we have been and will continue to be strongly committed to cooperating fully with the FDA, NIH, Congress and any other appropriate body as they review these issues."
President Rodin had previously appointed a committee of distinguished members of the Penn faculty, chaired by Provost Robert L. Barchi, to review ". . . carefully and completely . . ." all aspects of Penn's research using human volunteers. She said that the unaffiliated scientists reviewing IHGT's supervision of clinical trials will operate independently of the University review of research using human volunteers.
The Penn's Way 2000 campaign has concluded and we are delighted to report that the campaign surpassed our goal of $300,000 by nearly 30%! This year over 1600 Penn employees helped raise a total of $388,298 exceeding our goal by $88,298. The amount raised this year represents a 60% increase over last year's total.
We are extremely grateful to all of those who participated and contributed to this year's campaign and we salute all of our colleagues at Penn who gave so generously to local charitable organizations. Not only will your gifts make a difference to the organizations of your choice, but the combined contributions of Penn employees through the Penn's Way Campaign will have a significant impact on serving the enormous needs of our area's charitable community.
We would also like to acknowledge the efforts of all of the volunteer coordinators and facilitators, many of whom were creative in devising their own strategies to gain greater participation within their units. These people and their volunteer efforts were key to the reinvigoration and success of this year's campaign. Special thanks go to Marie Witt, Elizabeth Griffin, Jonathan Petty, Steve Gagne, Margaret Smith, Trish A. DiPietrae, Barry Stupine, Carla Hultman, and Jim Galbally. We would also like to commend the members of the Advisory Committee whose guidance helped shape the campaign, particularly Rita McGlone, Phyllis Holtzman, Glenn Bryan, Ellen Peskin, Lee Nunery and Duncan Van Dusen. Finally, we would like to thank Barbara Murray, Carol de Fries, and Joan Chrestay for putting together all of the different parts of this campaign and making them work.
More than 1000 of the total participants (or 63%) were entered via their School/Center coordinators or facilitators in the Campaign's weekly raffles and grand prize drawing. Of this group, 45 Penn employees across the University were winners of our weekly raffles and two lucky participants were awarded the grand prizes, an i-Mac computer and two airline tickets.
As the co-chairs of this year's campaign, we have enjoyed being a part of such a meaningful effort. We believe that we have learned important lessons this year and are certain that next year's campaign can be even better and more successful. We would appreciate your suggestions for how the campaign can improve next year. Please feel free to send your recommendations in an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Again, we thank everyone for their contributions to Penn's Way 2000.
--Larry Gross and Carol Scheman, co-chairs, Penn's Way 2000
Almanac, Vol. 46, No. 20, February 8, 2000