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“Be the Key – Unlock the Cure” Directs Funds to Minority Health Research at M. D. Anderson

“Be the Key – Unlock the Cure” Directs Funds to Minority Health Research at M. D. Anderson
Click on Web Site, Make a Donation, Receive Tiffany & Co. Keychain
M. D. Anderson News Release 09/13/04

Scientific discoveries are keys that ultimately help unlock the doors to innovative therapies, prevention strategies, creative thinking and even larger research questions. Starting today, through a new Web-based fundraising initiative for the Center for Research on Minority Health at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, a limited edition Tiffany & Co. keychain ultimately may help unravel many research questions exclusive to medically underserved and ethnic minority populations.

Through the effort known as “Be the Key – Unlock the Cure,” a donation of $150 or more will help fund minority health and health disparities research for current and future generations. In recognition of the tax-deductible donation, the donor will receive a sterling silver key chain featuring the silhouette of the state of Texas made by Tiffany & Co. 

The Center for Research on Minority Health will receive one-third of all donations to fund its research projects. The remaining two-thirds will go to the Endowment for the Growth of Giving to fund future partnerships, program sustainability and other charitable organizations. Of the $150 donation, $100 is tax-deductible.

The Texas keychain is available only through making a donation on a secured web site at The keychain will be mailed within two weeks to each donor who completes the form on the web site and requests the memento. 

According to Lovell A. Jones, Ph.D., director of the Center for Research on Minority Health at M. D. Anderson, funds raised through “Be the Key – Unlock the Cure” will help seed and grow research, community, educational and training programs that address health disparities and priorities among minority and underserved populations. Current projects include:

  • A nutritional program for African-American women to better understand the impact of diet on the risk for breast cancer.
  • A first-ever Asian-American health needs assessment in Houston conducted in Chinese, Vietnamese and English.
  • A science mentoring and internship program for minority students in kindergarten through high school and undergraduate through post-graduate school.
  • An assessment of risks of chronic pesticide exposure of children of migrant/seasonal farm workers.

“The ‘Be the Key – Unlock the Cure’ campaign is an easy way to support the mission of the Center for Research on Minority Health and benefit minority populations and the medically underserved not only in Houston, but throughout Texas and the United States,” said Jones, a nationally recognized leader in the area of minority health research. “Historically, these populations have been underrepresented in national clinical trials and prevention trials for cancer, and often, these populations face the greatest threat because of being diagnosed late and not having access to proper health care.”

The Center for Research on Minority Health at M. D. Anderson Cancer Center is the only Congressionally - designated center outside Washington, D.C. that focuses solely on research on minority health. Founded in 2000, the Center for Research on Minority Health employs 45 faculty and staff, one-third of whom are bilingual in Spanish, Chinese or Vietnamese. The center receives funds from the federal government as well as M. D. Anderson, grants and philanthropy.

“Because African American men are nearly three times more likely than Caucasian men to develop prostate cancer, and because Latinas have the highest mortality from cervical cancer than any other group, and because Hispanics and Native Americans are nearly twice as likely as Caucasians to have diabetes, there is tremendous need for the Center for Research on Minority Health, a group dedicated solely to the research needs of these populations,” said Jones. “It’s crucial to have a dynamic synergy in an organization that respects and celebrates our cultures while recognizing the fundamental tenets of humanity and survivorship.”

For more information on The Center for Research on Minority Health, please visit or call 713/563-2746.

© 2015 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center