With the September 2015 announcement of 124 new grants to researchers, Susan G. Komen has now officially invested more than $2.8 billion in mission programs since its founding – $889 million invested in research and $1.95 billion in all other mission program
- Susan G. Komen’s 2015 Breast Cancer Research Funding Targets Early-Career Investigators, New Therapies, Health Inequities and Metastatic Disease
- Three Delaware Valley Researchers included in Grants given in 25 States and 8 Countries to Sustain Komen Leadership in Breast Cancer Research
Susan G. Komen, the world’s largest nonprofit funder of breast cancer research, announced new grants to 124 researchers in 25 states and eight countries internationally, with about half of the grants targeted to early-career researchers squeezed by stagnation in federal research dollars.
The 2015 research grants expand Komen’s ongoing commitment to funding early-career scientists, that is, recent graduates and those trying to establish independent research careers. This group has been especially hard-hit by real-dollar declines of as much as 25 percent in federal research funding over the past decade.
“We committed two years ago to do all that we can to ensure that talented early-career investigators remain in the breast cancer research field, while continuing our support for established researchers,” said Komen President and CEO Judith A. Salerno, M.D., M.S. “We cannot afford to lose talented scientists to other fields for lack of funding.”
This year’s research slate brings Komen’s total research investment to more than $889 million since 1982, the largest of any nonprofit, and second only to the U.S. government.
Grants from Komen’s nearly $36 million research portfolio – including more than $17.6 million in grants awarded to early-career investigators – span the entire cancer continuum from prevention to treatments for aggressive and metastatic disease. These include:
- 36 grants to improve understanding of metastatic breast cancer
- 18 grants investigating how tumors develop drug resistance
- 19 grants related to the study of triple negative breast cancer – one of the most aggressive forms of the disease
- 15 grants working to identify and understand biological and socio-economic health inequities
- 13 grants seeking to develop new and novel therapies
Komen’s Investments in the Delaware Valley
Komen’s research program is funded in part by contributions from Komen’s nationwide network of Affiliates. Affiliates direct 25 percent of locally raised funds to Komen’s national research program, while investing the remaining 75 percent of net funds into community outreach programs that serve local women and men facing breast cancer.
Since 1991, Susan G. Komen Philadelphia has distributed approximately $55.5 million in grants to local organizations, funding of more than 155,000 mammograms for women in need in its service area, and contributed approximately $23 million to breast cancer research.
“We are so proud to have the support of this community as we help our friends, coworkers and neighbors who are facing breast cancer, and work for continued progress against breast cancer through research,” said Elaine I. Grobman, CEO of Komen Philadelphia.
For this latest granting period, Komen Philadelphia is funding the following Delaware Valley Researchers:
- Philadelphia: $785,000 to the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), in support of advocate training programs, scholar-in-training awards, scientific achievement awards and scientific conferences, including the 2014 Science of Cancer Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic Minorities and the Medically Underserved and Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research conferences, the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, and the 24th Annual AACR Workshop Molecular Biology in Clinical Oncology
- Philadelphia: $250,000 in funding to Joseph Sparano, M.D., of ECOG Research and Education Foundation to develop a biospecimen bank that can be used for future research and evaluation of both tumor and host-related factors that may drive recurrence. Blood and tissue samples are being collected from patients with operable breast cancer, who have participated in two large clinical trials, received standard adjuvant therapy and have not had a breast cancer recurrence.
- Princeton: Antoni Celia-Terrassa, Ph.D., of Princeton University will receive $180,000 to research how epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), a process that allows tumor cells to acquire invasive properties, is regulated, and potentially generate targeted therapies to block this key step in breast cancer metastasis.
A full list of Komen’s 2015 research grants can be found here. (contingent upon signed and executed contracts with Komen)
In addition to funding breast cancer research, Komen has invested more than $1.95 billion into community health outreach and global programs that serve hundreds of thousands of women and men annually through breast cancer health and support programs that screen, educate and provide financial, medical and psychosocial assistance.
For more information about Komen’s mission investment, please visit komen.org.