Britz Family Boosts Lung Research at UCSF Fresno with $250,000 Gift

FRESNO – David and Marilyn Britz of Fresno recently provided a $250,000 gift to the UCSF Fresno Medical Education Program to be used by faculty physicians at UCSF’s campus in Fresno who are conducting research into the
causes, prevention and treatment of lung diseases.

“We are incredibly grateful to the Britz family for their generosity and we look forward to using this donation to improve health outcomes for Central Valley patients and community members,” said Michael W. Peterson, MD, associate dean at UCSF Fresno. “This contribution will allow UCSF Fresno to establish the David and Marilyn Britz Lung Disease Research Grant Program, which will provide important seed funding to encourage novel research efforts aimed at addressing lung diseases.”

Lung disease is the overall term for many conditions impacting the lungs. Asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis, lung cancer, lung nodules, pneumonia, pulmonary hypertension (PH) and tuberculosis are just some of the diseases and conditions related to the lungs.

“Marilyn and I are passionate about promoting a healthy Valley,” said David Britz. “It was important to us to make a gift that addresses health issues impacting Valley residents and helps to improve health in the region.“We hope that by making this gift, others will be inspired to support the outstanding patient care and clinical research that UCSF Fresno provides right here in the Valley,” Britz added.

Faculty at UCSF Fresno are engaged in life‐improving and life‐saving patient care and research into complex lung diseases. For example, the UCSF Fresno Cystic Fibrosis Program is the only combined pediatric and adult program nationally accredited by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

UCSF Fresno also encompasses the Lung Nodule Program. Faculty physicians involved with the program, which is now in its eighth year, are capable of diagnosing lung disease faster than traditional methods and are currently caring for more than 2,000 patients. It is the only program of its kind in central California and one of only a few in the nation.

Lung Cancer is one of the top cancers that affects Valley residents and frequently develops as a small nodule or mass of tissue on the lung. While many nodules are benign, if detected early, cancerous nodules can be treated with more options and with positive outcomes.

The UCSF Fresno‐ affiliated Pulmonary Hypertension Program specializes in the diagnosis, treatment and management of patients with PH. It is the only PH program in the region and offers innovative treatments for a disease that had no treatments approximately 20 years ago.

The San Joaquin Valley has some of the worst air quality in the U.S., which often contributes to or exacerbates lung diseases.

David and Marilyn Britz live in the Fresno area and have been married for 46 years. They have two children and six grandchildren.