Celebrating Two Lives

Les Nelkin, left, with his family at the Les Nelkin 2011 Pediatric Cancer Center Survivors Day
Les Nelkin, left, with his family at the Les Nelkin 2011 Pediatric Cancer Center Survivors Day

The Cohen Children’s Medical Center community fondly remembers a great friend, Harold Nelkin, who passed away last December.

Moved by the loss of his 35-year-old son to Wilm’s tumor, Mr. Nelkin funded the Les Nelkin Pediatric Oncology Research Lab at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research in Manhasset in 2005.

Scientists there have detected a link between bone cancer development and red blood cell development, in collaboration with the Feinstein’s Laboratory of Developmental Erythropoiesis. This discovery advances the field of pediatric cancer research.

The Donor Difference

“Some supporters make a donation and say ‘Go do it.’ But Harold arranged dinner meetings every few weeks and wanted to know about our progress,” said lab founder Jeffrey Lipton, MD, PhD, Cohen Children’s director of pediatric hematology/oncology and stem cell transplantation. “Harold was a smart guy with young ideas. His generosity enables us to do highly collaborative work that links clinical problems with laboratory science.”

Now headed by Johnson Liu, MD, the laboratory’s plans include using CRISPR technology to uncover the genomic progression of cancer in cellular models, Dr. Lipton added.

Mr. Nelkin also created the Les Nelkin Pediatric Cancer Survivors Day, which celebrates its fifth anniversary this year. Taking place September 18 in Eisenhower Park, the 2016 celebration will take on a new dimension as we remember a man whose kindness continues to touch children and their families.

For information about how you can make a difference, contact Katie McManus at 516-465-2550 or [email protected].

Read the spring 2016 issue of Kids First.

Focus onHealth TV

Watch Focus onHealth, Northwell Health's TV show. It's the healthy way to stay informed!