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Prevent Cancer Foundation awards eight new research grants



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Alexandria, Va., Jan. 30, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The Prevent Cancer Foundation® is pleased to announce funding for eight scientists who are researching cancer prevention and early detection. Each scientist has been awarded $100,000 for two years. Areas of focus include the blood, breast, colon, lung and skin (including melanoma).

To honor the legacy of former Foundation board member, Congressman Victor “Vic” Fazio—who died of melanoma in March 2022—a $100,000 melanoma research grant was awarded in this year’s cycle.

Listed below are the 2023 research grantees. Click here for more detailed information about their projects.

Grantee: Francisco Cartujano, M.D.
Project Title: Advancing Lung Cancer Screening Among Latinos One Text at a Time
Named Award: Richard C. Devereaux Outstanding Young Investigator Award 
Position: Assistant Professor
Institution: University of Rochester Medical Center, Wilmot Cancer Institute, Rochester, N.Y.

Lung cancer remains the number one cause of cancer-related death among Latinos. Although lung cancer screening has been shown to reduce deaths, uptake among Latinos remains low. This project aims to develop and pilot test a text messaging program to increase the enrollment of lung cancer screening among Latinos.

Grantee: Brandon Gheller, Ph.D.
Project Title: Dietary Intervention for Clonal Hematopoiesis, Myelodysplasia and Leukemia
Named Award: Awesome Games Done Quick
Position: Research Fellow
Institution: Boston Children’s Hospital, Boston, Mass.

Clonal hematopoiesis is a condition where genetic mutations found in the blood predict cancer initiation and severity. This project aims to identify dietary interventions that can be applied safely for long periods of time in this pre-cancerous state to prevent cancer initiation.

Grantee: Maayan Levy, Ph.D.
Project Title: Designing Metabolite-Based Prevention in Lynch Syndrome    
Named Award: Stohlman Family Grant in memory of Richard Stohlman and Margaret Weigand
Position: Researcher
Institution: Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pa.

Despite the genetic predisposition to colorectal cancer in patients with Lynch syndrome, the age of onset and rate of progression is highly variable among patients, indicating a critical role for modifiable environmental factors, including diet, in disease manifestation. This study will serve as the steppingstone for larger follow-up trials in individuals with Lynch Syndrome and beyond. It is the hope that this study will establish a new, low-cost and widely accessible prevention method for colorectal cancer.

Grantee: Veronica Rotemberg, M.D., Ph.D.
Project Title: Quantifying the Impact of Skin Tone on Diagnostic Prediction
Named Award: Vic Fazio Memorial Fund
Position: Director of the Tow Foundation Informatics Program in the Dermatology Service
Institution: Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, N.Y.

Artificial intelligence has immense potential to improve access to expert-level melanoma screening in low-resource areas and enhance specificity of nonexperts. This project will evaluate algorithms and the largest training repository against potential sources of bias, such as skin tone.

Grantee: Caner Saygin, M.D.
Project Title: Dissecting the Evolution of Clonal Hematopoiesis to Prevent Acute Leukemias
Named Award: Awesome Games Done Quick
Position: Fellow
Institution: University of Chicago, Chicago, Ill.

Clonal hematopoiesis (CH) is a pre-malignant state that can be detected in blood cells of a person years before the diagnosis of acute leukemia. By understanding the mechanisms by which CH causes leukemia, this project aims to develop new strategies to predict the risk and prevent leukemia before it happens.

Grantee: Srividya Swaminathan, Ph.D.
Project Title: Targeting the Long Isoform of the Prolactin Receptor to Prevent B-Lymphomas
Named Award: Congressional Families Program: Tribute to The Honorable Vic Fazio
Position: Assistant Professor, Systems Biology
Institution: Beckman Research Institute of the City of Hope, Duarte, Calif.

Children and adults with certain kinds of autoimmune diseases are at high risk of developing aggressive B-cell lymphoma. This study seeks a new strategy for the early diagnosis and prevention of lymphoma among this vulnerable population.

Grantee: Ester Villalonga Olives, Ph.D.
Project Title: Adaptation of Project HEAL for Hispanic/Latino Immigrants
Named Award: Awesome Games Done Quick
Position: Assistant Professor
Institution: University of Maryland, Baltimore, Md.

Late-stage cancer has been linked to lower survival rates. Immigrant Hispanics/Latinos tend to be diagnosed at advanced stages, which can contribute to their disproportional rate of cancer-related mortality. This intervention aims to increase cancer knowledge and screening intention among this population.

Grantee: Michelle Williams, Ph.D., M.S.P.H., M.P.H.
Project Title: A Multicomponent Lung Cancer Screening Awareness mHealth Intervention
Named Award: The Shure Family Charitable Foundation
Position: Assistant Professor
Institution: George Mason University, Fairfax, Va.

Experts suggest that yearly lung cancer screening is one of the most effective ways to decrease lung cancer mortality rates. The evidence-based lung cancer education program of this project is focused on using mobile health technology to promote participation in lung cancer screening among high-risk populations.

To view all past funded research grant and fellowship projects driving these key advancements in cancer prevention and early detection, explore the Prevent Cancer Foundation’s Award Database.


About the Prevent Cancer Foundation®

The Prevent Cancer Foundation® is the only U.S.-based nonprofit organization solely dedicated to cancer prevention and early detection. Through research, education, outreach and advocacy, we have helped countless people avoid a cancer diagnosis or detect their cancer early enough to be successfully treated. We are driven by a vision of a world where cancer is preventable, detectable and beatable for all.  

The Foundation is rising to meet the challenge of reducing cancer deaths by 40% by 2035. To achieve this, we are committed to investing $20 million for innovative technologies to detect cancer early and advance multi-cancer screening, $10 million to expand cancer screening and vaccination access to medically underserved communities, and $10 million to educate the public about screening and vaccination options.

For more information, please visit

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Artificial Intelligence

Zetrix and Beitou Launch Digital ID & Driver’s Licence Services on Blockchain




Service is the first global W3C-compliant Verifiable Credential implementation and will be initially used by China domestic users travelling abroad
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, Dec. 10, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Zetrix, a layer 1 public blockchain platform, today announced the launch of its groundbreaking Digital Credentials platform, ushering in a new era of secure, convenient, and interoperable credentials verification. This innovative solution addresses the challenges of traditional paper-based credentials, offering a range of benefits that will transform the way individuals, organisations, and governments interact in the digital realm.

The launch marks the commercialisation of the collaboration announced on 18th September 2023 between Malaysia’s MY E.G. Services Berhad and China’s state-owned Guangxi Beitou IT Innovation Technology Investment Group Co Ltd (“Beitou”), the IT arm of Guangxi Beibu Gulf Investment Group listed as one of China’s Top 500 enterprises.
The launch was held on 9th December 2023 at Ritz-Carlton Hotel Kuala Lumpur and officiated by Malaysia’s Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
The service initially will be offered to domestic China nationals who can choose to digitise their National ID or driving licence as a Verifiable Credential (“VC”) on Xinghuo International, the international gateway for China’s national Public Blockchain. Through Zetrix, which is integrated with Xinghuo, the National ID or driving licence VC can then be presented abroad to be authenticated by any verifier wishing to verify the relevant identity or driving licence data according to their needs.
Beitou IT’s integration to China’s nationwide police and transport department databases ensures seamless authentication and digitisation of the documents into VCs.
Furthermore, in view of the immutability of blockchain, verifiers will have the assurance of knowing that the VCs and all data contained in the document are true and genuine.
It is foreseen that besides IDs and driving licences, other important credential documents held by individuals or businesses would also be digitised as VCs in the near future. 
Enhancing Security and Combating Breach of Data
The use of digital credentials, with the initial pilot of driving licences based on blockchain technology will significantly enhance security and combat counterfeiting of electronic licences. By leveraging on the Self Sovereign Identity (“SSI”) framework, Zetrix’s Digital Credentials platform enables the real time verification of documents digitised as Verifiable Credentials, providing a robust defence against fraud and forgery.
“In addition to ensuring authenticity, documents digitised as Verifiable Credentials offer the ability for selective disclosure or confirmation of data. For instance, document holders can have their age or their home location verified without actually having to provide their date of birth or full address. This is extremely useful as it protects raw user data from being shared unless absolutely necessary, thus reducing the possibilities of cyber attacks,” explained TS Wong, founder of Zetrix.
Lai Shuiping, Chairman of the Board of Guangxi Beitou IT Innovation Investment Group Co.,Ltd, Lai Shuiping, said: “The China-ASEAN digital driving license cross-border verification platform is jointly developed by Beitou IT and MYEG. The platform will continue to expand into providing more convenient services for communication between citizens of China and ASEAN countries, and promote economic development across the entire region.”
“In future, Beitou IT will further strengthen cooperation with Malaysian enterprises in the field of transportation digitalisation, and promote continuous improvement of intelligent transportation in ASEAN countries,” Lai added.
Multi-Chain e-Wallet for International Travelers
Zetrix’s Digital Credentials platform also leverages a multi-chain e-wallet that is able to store Zetrix’s native tokens as well as VCs from Xinghuo International and Ethereum. This feature facilitates seamless cross chain transactions and simplifies identity and document verification across multiple scenarios, enhancing the experience for travelling individuals.
The digital credentials service exemplifies the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards of Verifiable Credentials and Decentralised Identifiers as Self-Sovereign Identity. This will be a key catalyst to enable a greater interoperability across blockchains and decentralised applications.
About Zetrix
Zetrix is a layer-1 public blockchain that facilitates smart contracts and delivers privacy, security and scalability. Zetrix’s cryptographic infrastructure can be introduced to multiple industries to connect governments, businesses and their citizens to a global blockchain-based economy. Developed by MY E.G. Services Bhd, the cross-border and cross-chain integration with China enables Zetrix to serve as a blockchain gateway that facilitates global trade by deploying critical building blocks for Web3 services such as Blockchain-based Identifiers (BID) and Verifiable Credentials (VC).
About Guangxi Beitou IT Innovation Technology Investment Group Co Ltd 
Guangxi Beitou IT Innovation Investment Group Co. (Beitou IT) stands as a wholly owned subsidiary of Beibu Gulf Investment Group (Beitou Group), boasting total assets exceeding 300 billion RMB. Established in October 2020 with a registered capital of 1 billion RMB, Beitou IT has emerged as the foremost digital company in Southwest China. Beitou IT strategically concentrates on four primary business domains: ITAI project implementation and operation, IT product R&D, integration and sales, and the development of New Infrastructure. Over the past three years, Beitou IT has successfully undertaken numerous government and enterprise-level projects encompassing digital government, digital transportation, digital port, smart court, and enterprise digitalization.
With a workforce exceeding 400 employees, Beitou IT houses a team of hardware and software engineers, where over 50% hold master’s degrees from esteemed universities. The team includes 2 State Council-subsidized experts, numerous district industrial authorized experts, and a Fin-Tech expert from the ‘Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan Talent Project.’ This robust talent pool positions Beitou IT as one of the rare state-owned digital companies capable of independent R&D.
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Artificial Intelligence

Sustainability Empowerment, Brand Upgrade VIVOTEK among Taiwan’s Best Global Brands




TAIPEI, Dec. 10, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — VIVOTEK (3454TW), the global leading IP surveillance solution provider, has been selected to the Best Taiwan Global Brands, and consistently earned market recognition. The three development engines of operational excellence, comprehensive brand management, and active promotion of sustainable actions, have elevated the brand above competition to display outstanding brand value.

Best Taiwan Global Brands is organized by the Industrial Development Bureau, MOEA, and valuation is carried out by Interbrand, a global authority on brand valuation; this year, ESG was also included as key standards of valuation. In 2022, VIVOTEK set a record high in revenue with annual consolidated revenue reaching USD $332 million, achieving a growth rate of 82% compared to the same period in 2021. In addition to displaying operational strengths, VIVOTEK also advocated several sustainable actions, while also encouraging its employees to practice environmental protection both at work and in daily life, further earning the approval of the organizer.
“Being selected to Taiwan’s Best Global Brands is a recognition of the company’s strengths,” pointed out Allen Hsieh, VIVOTEK Spokesperson and Director of Global Marketing Division. “Brand power is not just manifested through the technical aspect of products, but also through the CSR aspect. By embedding ESG into our brand’s DNA, we not only adopt sustainable thinking, but also create a differentiated brand image. In the future, VIVOTEK will continue to empower our brand through ESG, while also constantly promoting smart and green innovations of security and protection technology, steering the brand towards greater value of sustainable development.”
Evolution of the brand is the firm starting point of VIVOTEK’s brand management. Through redefining identity and slogan, “We Get The Picture,” VIVOTEK breaks the limitations of the industry to redefine its brand value, establishing its unique status within the security and protection industry. By grasping the opportunity of technical innovation, VIVOTEK combines its hardware advantage and software capability to expand its deployment of security and protection solutions, becoming a leading solution provider, while also actively exploring the market of AI security and protection, such as: successfully launching innovative VORTEX smart cloud surveillance service that focuses on customer needs and accumulating many successful cases around the world. Recently, VIVOTEK was ranked number 12 among a&s Security 50, reaching the highest spot ever, and this is the very manifestation of the brand’s continued improvement of brand competitiveness.
VIVOTEK is a leading surveillance brand that strives for sustainability and began deploying ESG strategy many years ago. Key measures include voluntary publication of sustainability report for six consecutive years, participation in the RE100 global corporate renewable energy initiative, and promotion of renewable energy applications. More recently, VIVOTEK has incorporated the principle of sustainability into its product box design, reutilizing packaging of its products to create eco-friendly smartphone holders. This marks the first time the brand’s innovative sustainability principle has been extended through its products. VIVOTEK also plans to launch a product carbon footprint project in 2024 to facilitate formulation of comprehensive carbon reduction strategy, further strengthening brand development and upgrading sustainable operations.
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Artificial Intelligence

Belgian Commitment to Partnership Supports a New Frontier of Europe-US Space Research




BRUSSELS, Dec. 10, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo has travelled to Houston, United States, to meet Raphaël Liégeois, the Belgian career astronaut selected as part of the European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut class of 2022. De Croo’s visit coincides with the ESA cohort’s familiarisation trip to NASA’s Johnson Space Centre, which is the precursor to a further two years of training, delivered in Houston, to prepare the astronauts for their respective missions on the International Space Station. The visit signals a new phase of the long-standing collaboration between Europe and the United States on space research and exemplifies Belgium’s commitment to partnerships in facing global challenges.

Belgium’s expertise in aerospace, and in science more generally, is internationally recognised – in terms of both training and industry. Belgium is a founding member of the ESA and its fifth-largest funder. The country’s support of the ESA shows its commitment to shaping the development of Europe’s space capability and ensuring that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world.
“For Belgians, the sky isn’t the limit, the universe is,” said De Croo. “Today, we are very proud to see Raphaël take this important step in his career as an astronaut. He will be an important role model for many generations of STEM students to come. Space research and innovation hold particular importance for Belgium; they are powerful economic drivers which foster the growth of high-tech industries and create jobs – as evidenced by the number of Belgian companies on the cutting edge of aeronautics.” 
The 17 members of the ESA astronaut class of 2022 were selected from a pool of over 23,000 applicants. The process, designed to bring together the finest scientific minds that Europe has to offer, took place over a period lasting 18 months.
The selection of Raphaël Liégeois is testament to Belgium’s focus on embracing openness, driven by innovation, partnerships, and diversity, to create solutions that drive progress for all.
About Belgium
Located in the heart of Europe, Belgium is one of the most open economies in the world, counting 11.5 million people with a reputation for innovation, hard work, partnership, and multilingualism. Strategically located between Germany, the Netherlands, France, and Luxembourg, and only a stone’s throw from the UK, it lies at the centre of the richest and most densely populated area in Europe. A member of the European Union, Belgium enjoys full access to the world’s most advanced single market and customs zone which ensures extensive frictionless trade.
Belgium boasts a highly developed transport infrastructure, including the second largest seaport in Europe (Antwerp). Belgium is home to world-leading research and innovation facilities, multinational corporations, and artisanal businesses supported by the investor-centric approach of public services.
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