Two non-profit groups are pairing up to address a lack of funding for pediatric cancer research, creating a new award designed to recruit top young minds to research childhood cancers.

The New York-based Sohn Conference Foundation has granted $1.5 million to Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation, also in the city, to establish the Damon Runyon-Sohn Pediatric Cancer Fellowship Award.

The prize which will provide funding to scientists and clinicians who conduct research with the potential to significantly impact the prevention, diagnosis or treatment of pediatric cancers.

"As in the technology world, where transformative innovation most often comes from young minds, the most brilliant and audacious young scientists drive breakthroughs in biomedical research. We are confident that by getting them to focus on childhood cancers, we can cure children and prevent the long-term side effects that result from today's treatments," said Lorraine Egan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Damon Runyon.

Pediatric cancer research accounts for just four percent of the National Cancer Institute’s budget, notes the partnership.

After a national call for proposals, a selection committee chaired by William Carroll, MD, Director of the New York University Cancer Institute will pick the award recipients.