$770,000 Research Grants are Part of Komen’s $66 Million 2011 Global Investment
LAWRENCEVILLE, N.J. – November 4, 2011 – Two teams of Princeton University researchers will study bone marrow to help explain and potentially prevent breast cancer from spreading, with national research funding announced today by Susan G. Komen for the Cure®.
The $770,000 in grants are part of Komen for the Cure’s $66 million investment in new research, patient support and scientific conferences in 2011. Komen has invested more than $685 million into breast cancer research in its 29 years, making it the largest non-profit funder of breast cancer research outside of the federal government.
“Our research investments are geared to bringing results to the table – and soon – for the most difficult questions remaining in breast cancer,” said Ambassador Nancy G. Brinker, Komen founder and CEO.
One grant, for $588,750 to Yibin Kang, Ph.D., will investigate whether a protein called VCAM1 acts like a trigger to wake up dormant cancer cells in the bone, enabling them to grow and travel to other parts of the body.
With a second grant for $180,000, Kang and Hanqui Zeng, Ph.D., will seek a potential Achilles’ heel in bone metastasis that may be a new target for treatment and could also be used as a marker to identify patients at high risk for disease spread.
“This research investigates ways to potentially stop cancer from spreading, and ties squarely to our mission to fund cutting-edge breast cancer research along the entire cancer continuum – from prevention to early diagnostics, disparities in outcomes, more effective treatments, and answers for aggressive and metastatic disease,” said Komen President Elizabeth Thompson.
These national research grants are in addition to the $1.6 million in community grants distributed locally in 2011 by Komen’s Central and South Jersey Affiliate. Seventy-five percent of funds raised by Komen Affiliates stays in the community for screening, treatment, education and support programs; the rest help fund national research programs.
“The research projects we’re investing in today are critical to the momentum we’ve built during the last 30 years in our quest to understand, and ultimately solve, the many questions surrounding breast cancer,” said Eric Winer, M.D., Komen’s chief scientific advisor, chief of the Division of Women’s Cancers at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Professor of Medicine at Harvard University.