Couple gives millions for cancer research at Mizzou

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The University of Missouri-Columbia College of Veterinary Medicine recently received a more than $5 million estate gift that honors two of its alumni.

Cottrell and Kay Fox of Town and Country, Mo., a suburb of St. Louis, gave the gift in recognition of the work of their longtime family veterinarians, Drs. James Schuessler and Fred Bendick from St. Louis, who are both alumni of the veterinary college.

The money will support an endowment in companion animal medicine in honor of the two veterinarians. It also will fund studies in comparative oncology as well as enhance training for graduate students and veterinary oncology residents, according to a Feb. 20 MU press release.

The Foxes’ interest in the veterinary college began when their family dog was treated for cancer at the MU Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital years ago. As a part of that cancer treatment, MU veterinarians used a drug developed at the university called samarium (brand name Quadramet). Years later, Kay Fox’s father was treated for cancer using the same drug. According to the release, samarium was made available for use in human patients only because of the years of research by MU scientists at the veterinary college. Dr. Carolyn Henry, an MU professor of veterinary oncology, said in the release that the gift will be used to develop more effective methods of cancer diagnosis and treatment for animals and humans.