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March 2004

Release Date: March 30, 2004

Cancer Researcher to Deliver Moon Lecture April 6 at ASU

When Mary-Claire King delivers the 28th Annual Roy E. Moon Distinguished Lectureship in Science on Tuesday, April 6, she will join 28 of the world's most eminent contemporary scientists who have spoken as Moon lecturers at Angelo State University.

Dr. King, one of the nation's leading researchers in breast cancer, is the American Cancer Society Professor in the Departments of Medicine (Medical Genetics) and Genome Sciences at the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle.

Her Moon predecessors include 11 Nobel Prize laureates starting with Linus Pauling in 1978 and scientists who have discovered everything from the hole in the ozone layer to the world's oldest fossils.

She will deliver two public speeches during her visit to campus April 6. At 2 p.m. she will present a technical lecture for students on "Genetic Analysis of Breast and Ovarian Cancer." Then at 8 p.m. she will offer a public lecture on "Genes, Race and Medicine." Both talks are open to the public and both will be in the C.J. Davidson Conference Center in ASU's Houston Harte University Center.

The lectureship is sponsored annually by West Texas Medical Associates (WTMA) in honor of the late Roy E. Moon, who died in 1976 after 28 years as an obstetrician and gynecologist with Clinic Hospital Medical Associates, predecessor to WTMA.

King is best known as the first scientist to demonstrate that a mutation in a single gene is responsible for causing an inherited form of breast and ovarian cancer. Her work opened new lines of research that culminated in the discovery of the gene now called BRCA1. She is currently involved in a variety of collaborative research projects studying inherited deafness, examining genetic resistance to HIV, using mitochondrial DNA sequences to trace the movements of human populations and identifying genes for lupus susceptibility.

In 1999 she was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Her research has resulted in 192 articles in professional and refereed journals. She holds four U.S. research patents related to genetic markers for breast and ovarian cancer, BRCA1 and BRCA2 proteins and actin modulators.

She holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Carleton College in Northfield, Minn., as well as a Ph.D. in genetics from the University of California at Berkeley. She has also done post-doctoral work at the University of California at San Francisco.