Founded in 2004, the Executive Advisory Board of the Iris Cantor-UCLA Women's Health Center provides funding for research and education projects of the Center. Over the past 15 years, the Executive Advisory Board has provided $4,000,000 to help underwrite UCLA research and commnity projects in women's health. The data produced by these research studies has been used to obtain more than $23,000,000 in government funding for women's health research.

These projects have:

  • advanced our understanding of differences between women and men in how genes work in the brain, liver, muscle, and adipose tissue (fat);
  • investigated the potential of natural components of vegetables to prevent the spread of breast and ovarian cancer;
  • studied the immune system, including how the impact of stress may be affected by female hormones, whether yoga may help overcome stressful changes, and how particular aspects of women's immune systems may combine with infectious and other factors to cause infertility and heart disease;
  • identified how victims of human trafficking (slavery) in Los Angeles might be identified and rescued through their interactions with physicians and other healthcare providers;
  • studied male/female differences in stroke and migraine headaches;
  • investigated less toxic approaches to the treatment of uterine cancer.

Executive Advisory Board contributions augment other resources to allow investigations to look at differences between men and women, and to pursue promising results from previous work. These funds pay for the greatest needs of the researcher, including chemicals and other supplies for laboratory research; food and housing for mice and rats; and salary support for research assistants and statisticians. Results have been published and presented in leading scientific journals and at important scientific meeting. Findings have also been publicized internationally by Reuters, CBS, ABC, and other new outlets. An additional four projects will be awarded this year.

Executive Advisory Board funds also support outreach programs of the Center that provide health education to low-income women, as well as educational programs for medical students, practicing physicians, and other healthcare providers. The Executive Advisory Board supports joint health advocacy programs with the Los Angeles County Office of Women's Health on topics such as reproductive health, cardiovascular disease in women, human trafficking, and women's health and the environment.

The Iris Cantor-UCLA Women's Health Center Executive Advisory Board is comprised of 25-30 members interested in making a significant impact in women's health. The board supports research, clinical, and educational programs, with each member committing to three years of service, meeting two-three times per year and committing to a $10,000 annual contribution.

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