Special Grants Worth Millions, Designed to Speed Discoveries and Find Cures
DALLAS – July 1, 2009 – One of the most important challenges in the cancer community today is whether people can, in fact, prevent their own cancers. Susan G. Komen for the Cure® is announcing millions of dollars in long-term grant funding to find out.
The world’s leading breast cancer organization is now asking the scientific community for proposals for long-term research grants – some as large as $5 million – to study everything from the role of natural products to diets to breast cancer vaccines.
“Prevention is a very hot issue these days, but clear enough scientific evidence to say that this diet, that behavior, or the elimination of this environmental agent significantly reduces your risk of breast cancer doesn’t yet exist. And we certainly don’t have a vaccine to prevent breast cancer,” said Hala Moddelmog, Komen’s president and CEO. “Since our mission is to end breast cancer forever, we consider prevention and vaccine research absolutely critical, and we’re willing to invest significant sums to get these answers.”
The research will be funded through Komen’s unique Promise Grants: multi-year, multi-million dollar projects geared to answer the toughest questions in breast cancer science today.
Introduced in 2008, Promise Grants require collaboration across a wide range of disciplines – scientists, medical professionals, caregivers, public health specialists and advocates – who normally may not work together. These teams conduct research with the highest potential to deliver treatments for breast cancer more quickly and for this new Promise Grant to find ways to prevent breast cancer.
“Komen’s mission has always been to find cures for breast cancer, which to this point has involved hundreds of millions of dollars and three decades of research into understanding the disease and developing treatments that are saving lives,” said Diana Rowden, vice president of Health Sciences. “It’s absolutely critical for us to work on strategies to prevent breast cancer entirely, or at least pinpoint the environmental and lifestyle issues that may contribute to breast cancer. We know this research will get us closer.”
Komen’s $450 million in research funding since its founding in 1982 has touched every major development in breast cancer treatments during the past 27 years. In the last three years alone, Komen has invested more than $230 million in research projects in the U.S. and internationally.
About the Request for Applications
These upcoming grants will run from three to five years with amounts up to $5 million. Applications for the grants will be accepted until July 15, 2009.
In order to be considered for funding, researchers must be able to prove their prevention approach is worthwhile and must start testing it on humans before the five-year grant expires. The grants are aimed especially at novel approaches to breast cancer prevention. Grant applicants should also describe how their findings from early phase trials will lead to more advanced testing and ultimately to a prevention for breast cancer.
Research designed to prevent breast cancer from recurring will not be considered for the 2009-2010 Promise Grants, but these grants may be used to support drug formulation, dietary and/or behavioral formulas, or previously untested novel methods.
Komen for the Cure will be accepting applications from U.S. and international researchers but they must work for nonprofit institutions or organizations. The grant allows for the involvement of industry partners, however they can not be reimbursed for any fee or profit.
Interested applicants can visit komen.org for details. The anticipated start of funding for these prevention Promise Grants is May 2010.