As reported by The Hartford Courant, April 13, 2005.

Funds for Tobacco-Related Research

The state Department of Public Health announced Tuesday that $850,000 will be awarded to two Connecticut researchers working in the fields of lung cancer and tobacco-related illness.

Dr. Cheryl Oncken of the University of Connecticut Health Center will receive $500,000 to identify molecular markers of prenatal tobacco exposure, to better understand how maternal smoking contributes to increased risk of low birth weight and developmental problems in infants.

Dr. Lynn D. Wilson of Yale University School of Medicine will be granted $350,000 to conduct a clinical trial of an innovative treatment for non-small cell lung cancer, which will use a novel immunological treatment in conjunction with radiation therapy.

The proposals were selected from among 20 submitted for support from the state's Biomedical Research Trust Fund. The fund was established in 2000 to receive $4 million annually from the state's share of the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement with big tobacco firms, but it was not actually funded until last year. Most of the tobacco settlement funds have gone into the general fund.

Sen. Joseph Crisco, D-Woodbridge, who introduced the biomedical research bill, praised the award for "accomplishing one of the first programs in the country to provide tobacco settlement money for research into ... smoking related illnesses."