DALLAS, TX (November 8, 2020) – The Mary Kay FoundationSM, a decades-long leader in the mission to eliminate cancers affecting women, is proud to announce the first recipient in Spain of the new International Postdoctoral Scholars in Cancer Research Fellowship. In collaboration with the Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center at UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas, the one-year fellowship is awarded to Ana Martin Vega, a Ph.D. student in cancer biology at Instituto de Biomedicina y Biotecnología de Cantabria, Spain.

The global postdoctoral grant will allow Martin Vega the opportunity to conduct cutting-edge cancer research at both UT Southwestern Simmons Cancer Center and in Spain with a return grant. Her research is focused on studying the molecular mechanisms whereby scaffold proteins regulate signaling through ERK1/2 MAP kinases and its relevance in melanoma.

“As a medical scientist, grant funding is critical to advance cancer research and I’m honored to be the first recipient in Spain of this international program,” said Martin Vega. “With support from The Mary Kay FoundationSM, the fellowship will allow me to take advantage of the world-renowned cancer laboratory at the UT Southwestern Simmons Cancer Center and in turn, bring that knowledge to my research work in Spain. It’s an exciting collaboration that I’m thrilled to be a part of.”

Martin Vega will join Natália Bernardes,Ph.D., the first Brazilian fellowship recipient , Shengyan Gao, Ph.D., the first Chinese recipient of the program, and two more international postdoctoral fellows in Dallas. The $500,000 grant will support the fellowship research at UT Southwestern Medical Center, a premier academic medical center. The institution’s faculty includes many distinguished members, including six who have been awarded Nobel Prizes since 1985.

“We could not be prouder of Ana Martin Vega to join some of the best and brightest research scientists in the world through this new international program,” said Gema Aznar, General Manager of Mary Kay Spain. “With this collaboration, we are one step closer to advancing technologies, treatments and ultimately, eliminating cancers affecting women.”

For more than two decades, The Mary Kay FoundationSM and UT Southwestern Medical Center have partnered in a continued commitment to find cures for cancers affecting women. The new program marks the first time the Foundation’s cancer research grants have been awarded globally.

“Our expanded partnership will allow advancements in cancer research to be shared on a global level and therefore, impact women on an even larger scale,” said Dr. Lucy Gildea, Chief Scientific Officer at Mary Kay Inc. “Together with the Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center, we are proud to continue our company’s long legacy of making the world a better place for women and their families.”

Since its establishment in 1996, The Mary Kay FoundationSM has awarded nearly $23 million to support the work of more than 235 top cancer researchers. For more information, visit marykayfoundation.org.

About The Mary Kay Foundation

Guided by Mary Kay Ash’s dream to enrich the lives of women everywhere, The Mary Kay FoundationSM raises and distributes funds to invest in breakthrough cancer research to find a cure for women-related cancers, and ending domestic violence against women. Since 1996, The Mary Kay FoundationSM has contributed more than $78 million to organizations aligned with its two-fold mission. In addition, the Foundation supports awareness initiatives, community outreach programs, and advocates for legislation to ensure women are healthy and safe. Together, we can make the world better for women. To learn more about how to educate, advocate, volunteer and donate, and join life-saving work to support and empower women, visit marykayfoundation.org, find us on Facebook and Instagram, or follow us on Twitter.