Susan G. Komen Announces $31 Million in Research Grant Funding with Metastatic Focus

SUSAN G. KOMEN® ANNOUNCES $31 MILLION IN 2017 FUNDING FOR 98 NEW
BREAST CANCER RESEARCH GRANTS, WITH FOCUS ON AGGRESSIVE
AND METASTATIC CANCERS

University of Kansas Cancer Center Researcher Receive $300,000 in Funding

DALLAS – September 26, 2017 – Susan G. Komen, the world’s leading breast cancer organization, today announced 2017 research funding of $30.7 million for 98 research grants, with a focus on new treatments and understanding of the most lethal forms and stages of breast cancer. Komen funding to institutions in 27 states and 7 countries also includes research into new screening technologies, treatments for metastatic and aggressive types of breast cancer and disparities in breast cancer outcomes.

The grants include $300,000 in new funding for research at one institution in Kansas, The University of Kansas Cancer Center, bringing Komen’s total research investment in Kansas to more than $10.5 million since 1982.

“We are focused on new treatments, ways to overcome drug resistance in breast cancer patients, and a better understanding of how and why breast cancer spreads, so that we can better treat metastatic breast cancer or prevent it all together,” said Ellen Willmott, interim president and CEO of Susan G. Komen. “This focus on aggressive and metastatic disease is the foundation of our Bold Goal to reduce U.S. breast cancer deaths by 50% by 2026.”

Metastatic breast cancer – which is breast cancer that has spread to other parts of the body like the brain, liver, bones or lungs – is responsible for almost all of the nation’s 40,000 annual breast cancer deaths. More than 154,000 women are living with metastatic disease in the U.S. today. By targeting metastatic disease, Komen is hoping to reduce breast cancer deaths dramatically in the U.S.

This year’s funding also includes $17.6 million to early-career investigators. “Funding for early-career researchers ensures a continuum of breast cancer research, across generations, which is critical in a time of tightening federal research dollars,” Willmott said.

Komen’s 2017 portfolio includes*:

  • 37 grants expanding our knowledge of metastatic breast cancer and how to better treat it or prevent it;
  • 37 grants looking into novel treatments for aggressive types of breast cancer (specifically, triple negative, inflammatory breast cancer luminal B, and ER-positive recurrent breast cancer).
  • 59 grants focused on new therapies, including 10 for targeted therapies and 20 for drug development
  • 24 investigating drug resistance (why drugs stop working in some patients)
  • 9 on disparities in breast cancer outcomes and 2 involving Big Data

“We are so thankful for the friends, family and neighbors that fight alongside us, helping to reduce the number of breast cancer deaths in Missouri and Kansas, both on the ground and through research,” said Denise Wiese, Susan G. Komen Greater Kansas City Interim Executive Director.

Komen’s Investments in Kansas

Komen’s research program is funded in part by contributions from Komen’s nationwide Network of Affiliates, which directs 25% of funds raised locally to Komen’s national research program, while investing the remaining 75% into community outreach programs that serve local women and men facing breast cancer.

University of Kansas Cancer Center

Komen Scholar Danny Welch, Ph.D., will receive $300,000 to study the role of genes that suppress the ability of breast cancer cells to spread to other parts of the body (metastasis). By understanding why and how metastasis happens, new targets can be identified for therapy and guide treatment decisions.

These new funds bring Komen’s total research investment in breast cancer to more than $956 million since opening its doors in 1982, the largest of any nonprofit and second only to the U.S. government. In addition to research, Komen and its nationwide network of Affiliates serve women and men in thousands of communities. To date, more than $2.1 billion has been invested in community programs that provide education, screening and treatment support.

Kansas also has 3 ongoing grants, awarded in previous years.

About Susan G. Komen®
Susan G. Komen is the world’s largest breast cancer organization outside of the federal government, funding more breast cancer research than any other nonprofit while providing real-time help to those facing the disease. Since its founding in 1982, Komen has funded more than $956 million in research and provided more than $2.1 billion in funding to screening, education, treatment and psychosocial support programs. Komen has worked in more than 60 countries worldwide. Komen was founded by Nancy G. Brinker, who promised her sister, Susan G. Komen, that she would end the disease that claimed Suzy’s life. Visit komen.org or call 1-877 GO KOMEN. Connect with us on social at ww5.komen.org/social

About Susan G. Komen® and Komen Greater Kansas City
Komen Kansas City is working to better the lives of those facing breast cancer in the local community. Through events like the Race for the Cure®, Rock the Ribbon and the Pink Promise Conference, Komen Kansas City has invested more than $21 million in community breast health programs in our 17-county service area and has helped contribute to the more than $956 million invested globally in researchFor more information, Visit komenkansascity.orgbehindtheribbon.org or call 816.842.0410. Connect with us on social media: FacebookTwitter or Instagram.

Grants are contingent upon signed and executed contracts with Komen.

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Susan G. Komen sets bold goal to reduce U.S. breast cancer deaths by 50 percent in 10 years

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SUSAN G. KOMEN SETS BOLD GOAL TO REDUCE U.S. BREAST CANCER DEATHS BY 50 PERCENT IN 10 YEARS

Plan Targets Health Equity for All, Enhanced Research Focu
for Most Lethal Breast Cancers

DALLAS – Sept.13, 2016 – The Susan G. Komen breast cancer organization announced a bold plan today to reduce the nation’s 40,000 breast cancer deaths by 50 percent in 10 years, by improving access to quality and timely cancer care for the underserved and enhancing Komen’s research focus on lethal breast cancers.

“We know that people die of breast cancer for two reasons: a lack of high-quality breast cancer care accessible to everyone, and a lack of treatments for the most aggressive and deadly forms of this disease,” said Dr. Judith A. Salerno, president and CEO of Susan G. Komen. “We are taking direct action designed to solve these problems to reduce breast cancer deaths by half in the U.S. within the next decade.”

$27 Million Advanced for Health Equity 

Salerno said today that Fund II Foundation made a grant worth approximately $27 million for a  program initially targeting 10 metropolitan areas to significantly reduce what she called the “appalling” difference in death rates between African-American and white women. African-American women are nearly 40 percent more likely to die of breast cancer than white women; in some cities, that gap is as high as 74 percent.

“This constitutes a public health crisis that must be addressed, first in the cities where these death rates are highest, and then in all areas of the country,” Salerno said.

Salerno thanked Fund II Foundation for the grant that makes the initiative possible. “The generosity of Fund II Foundation will save lives,” Salerno said. “We are humbled by the faith that Fund II Foundation has placed in this initiative and its interest in ensuring health equity for African-American citizens.”

Fund II Foundation President, Robert F. Smith said, “No longer should African-American women be more likely to die from a breast cancer diagnosis than others. Through this grant supporting Susan G. Komen, Fund II Foundation will help address these unfair disparities across our country.”

Komen’s African-American Health Equity Initiative targets cities where mortality rates and late-stage diagnosis of African-American women are highest. The goal: to reduce the mortality gap by 25 percent within five years of beginning work in each city.

The initial targeted cities are Memphis, Tenn., St. Louis, Mo., Dallas, Los Angeles, Virginia Beach, Va., Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia.  Baltimore and Detroit have been identified as high-priority areas as the program expands over the next year.

The African-American Health Equity Initiative supplements the work that Komen and its network of 100 U.S. Affiliates already are doing to remove barriers to cancer care. Komen and Komen Affiliates support thousands of local programs that provide screenings, treatment assistance, emergency financial aid, medical supplies and living expense for underserved individuals.

The organization has invested more than $2 billion over 34 years for these programs aimed at uninsured, under-insured, and medically vulnerable populations.

“We will never waver from our commitment to remove barriers of language, geography, economics or culture for all people facing this disease.  Every woman or man must be able to access and receive high-quality breast health and breast cancer care, be supported through their treatment and into survivorship,” Salerno said.

Research

The second prong of Komen’s plan enhances Komen’s focus on aggressive forms of breast cancer and metastatic disease (stage IV or cancer that has spread to other parts of the body).

As the largest nonprofit funder of breast cancer research (investing more than $920 million since inception), Komen has funded nearly $160 million in metastatic disease research since its founding. Komen has funded another $110 million in research on aggressive forms of breast cancer – such as triple negative, inflammatory breast cancer and hormone-positive forms of breast cancer – that are resistant to standard treatments.

“The majority of breast cancer deaths are from metastatic breast cancer. We also know that aggressive forms of breast cancer are more likely to recur and spread, so we are focusing our efforts in both of these areas,” Salerno said.

The new initiative aims to advance research into new treatments for aggressive and metastatic disease. Komen also will seek to leverage next-generation technology that can detect breast cancer at its very earliest stages to prevent recurrence and metastasis.

Progress to Date

Salerno said Komen’s bold goal builds on the progress of the breast cancer movement since Komen was founded in 1982. “Death rates from breast cancer have declined by 37 percent since 1990. We have more treatments than at any time in our history. We’ve come a very long way from a time when breast cancer couldn’t be discussed publicly. Our new bold goal requires us to take a deeper dive and stretch further to ensure that every woman or man can be told, ‘There is help and hope for you.’”

About Susan G. Komen®

Susan G. Komen is the world’s largest breast cancer organization, funding more breast cancer research than any other nonprofit outside of the federal government while providing real-time help to those facing the disease. Since its founding in 1982, Komen has funded more than $920 million in research and provided more than $2 billion in funding to screening, education, treatment and psychosocial support programs serving millions of people in more than 30 countries worldwide. Komen was founded by Nancy G. Brinker, who promised her sister, Susan G. Komen, that she would end the disease that claimed Suzy’s life. Visit komen.org or call 1-877 GO KOMEN. Connect with us on social at ww5.komen.org/social.

About Fund II Foundation

Fund II Foundation makes grants to 501(c)(3) public charities in five areas:  1) preservation of the African-American experience, 2) safeguarding human dignity by giving a voice to the voiceless and promoting human rights 3) improving environmental conservation and providing outdoor education that enables people of all ages and backgrounds to enjoy the numerous benefits of the great outdoors 4) facilitating music education, particularly in primary and secondary schools, to nourish both the mind and the soul 5) and sustaining the uniquely American values of entrepreneurship, empowerment, innovation and security.  For more information on Fund II Foundation, visit www.fund2foundation.org.

About Susan G. Komen® Greater Kansas City

Susan G. Komen® Greater Kansas City is working to better the lives of those facing breast cancer in the local community. Through events like the Komen Kansas City Race for the Cure®, Rock the Ribbon and the Pink Promise Conference, Komen KC has invested more than $20 million in community breast health programs throughout 17 Kansas and Missouri counties and has helped contribute to the more than $889 million invested globally in researchVisit komenkansascity.org or call 816.842.0410. Connect with us on social media: facebook.com/komenkansascity; twitter.com/komenkansascity or instagram.com/komenkc.

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