College of Medicine receives valuable support from old and new friends

The department of urology and department of ophthalmology receive gifts to support research efforts.

The department of urology recently received a commitment of support from the 1923 Fund, a philanthropic foundation established by the Cofrin family, longtime supporters of UF and its programs. The gift, which will eventually total $500,000, will help create a research fund to support the development of a tissue bank for prostate cancer research. The gift came with a challenge to the department of urology to raise additional donations from other philanthropic sources to bring the fund to $1 million.

A dedicated tissue bank and biorepository is an essential tool in cancer research, and this fund will help physicians and scientists study the biology of urologic cancer and other related diseases. It will also help researchers answer important questions about why cancers develop and metastasize, as well as risk factors and key aspects of disease progression. By discovering answers to these questions, physicians and scientists can detect diseases earlier and develop enhanced treatment options for afflicted patients.

The department of ophthalmology also received significant support recently from Gainesville resident Elaine Stanley, who made a gift of nearly $200,000 to support glaucoma research and medical equipment.

“I know that all educational institutions are in need of funds, so I thought a little boost would help research in glaucoma, especially if they could discover things that would help patients in the future,” Stanley said.

Stanley’s gift will be divided evenly between research support and equipment.

“Losing one’s vision is very traumatic,” she said. “If I can help someone so that they don’t have to go through it that would be a blessing,” she said. “These donors have made a positive impact on medical research and patient care.”