LUNGevity Announces Lung Cancer Research Grants

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

MEDIA CONTACT:
VICTORIA SHAPIRO
                                                                                                                        (202) 414-0774

                                                                                                               vshapiro@susandavis.com

LUNGevity Foundation awards nine grants to researchers across the country for cutting-edge lung cancer research into early detection and targeted therapeutics

WASHINGTON (June 20, 2011) – LUNGevity Foundation announced that it is awarding $2 million to fund nine of the most promising lung cancer research proposals in the areas of early detection and targeted therapeutics. The Foundation has the largest grant awards program of any lung cancer organization in the United States.

 Awards for early detection research were made to:

  • Dr. Suzanne Miyamoto, associate research biochemist at the University of California Davis in Sacramento, Calif., for “A System Biology Approach to Biomarkers for Early Detection of Lung Cancer”
  • Dr. Edward Patz, James and Alice Chen Professor of Radiology at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C., for “Serum Biomarkers for the Early Detection of Lung Cancer”
  • Dr. Jeffrey A. Borgia, assistant professor at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, Ill., for “Autoantibody-based Biomarkers to Aid in the Early Diagnosis of Lung Cancer”
  • Dr. York Miller, professor at the University of Colorado Denver in Aurora, Colo., for “LUNGevity Lung Cancer Early Detection Award”

Awards for targeted therapeutics were made to:

  • Dr. Rebecca Heist, assistant professor of medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Mass., for “Identifying Tumor Genomic Changes in Lung Cancers”
  • Dr. Alexander Steven Whitehead, professor of pharmacology, at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, Pa., for “Folate-related Biomarkers as Predictors of Response to Pemetrexed Therapy”
  • Dr. Edward Gabrielson, professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Md., for “Examining LKB1 Status as a Biomarker for Response of Lung Cancer to Metform”
  • Dr.  David P. Carbone, program leader, Thoracic/Head and Neck Program at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tenn., for “Biomarkers for Personalizing Adjuvant Therapy in NSCLC – Increasing Cures”
  • Dr. John V. Heymach, associate professor, Department of Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, for “Predictive Blood-based Markers of Response to VEGF Inhibitors in NSCLC”

“LUNGevity Foundation is truly encouraged by the breadth and quality of the research we have chosen to support,” said Andrea Stern Ferris, President of LUNGevity Foundation. “We received 67 grant applications and many of them were truly promising. We rigorously reviewed and rated each application and feel very good about the ones we have chosen to support. It would be wonderful if we collectively, as a nation, would find a way to support other deserving research projects. Lung cancer is our nation’s number-one cancer killer, taking nearly 160,000 lives each year. We desperately need to find a way to stop it from taking such a terrible toll on this country.”

Eighty-four percent of lung cancer patients die less than five years after their diagnosis, yet government and corporate funding largely overlook lung cancer research. LUNGevity works to make up for this disparity by allocating private donations to translational research that can lead to breakthroughs in diagnosing and treating lung cancer.

The Foundation employs its Scientific Advisory Board, 15 prominent and leading scientists and researchers, as well as additional experts to ensure that grants are awarded to the proposals with the greatest potential of saving lives. Under the guidance of the Advisory Board, chaired by Dr. Pierre Massion, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine and Cancer Biology in the Division of Allergy, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, LUNGevity has become the nation’s premier private grant-making organization funding research for the detection and treatment of lung cancer.

For additional information about the grants or to learn more about LUNGevity Foundation please visit www.lungevity.org.  To arrange an interview with Andrea Ferris or an award recipient, please contact Victoria Shapiro at 202-414-0774 or vshapiro@susandavis.com.

About LUNGevity Foundation

The mission of LUNGevity Foundation is to have a meaningful and immediate impact on improving lung cancer survival rates, ensure a higher quality of life for lung cancer patients, and provide a community for those impacted by lung cancer.

In order to accomplish its mission, LUNGevity funds the most promising research into the early detection and successful treatment of lung cancer. LUNGevity also supports the largest national grassroots lung cancer network.

LUNGevity seeks to inspire the nation to commit to ending lung cancer.

About Lung Cancer

  • Lung cancer impacts 1 in 14 Americans and is the number-one cancer killer. 
  • About 60 percent of Americans diagnosed with lung cancer are either never-smokers or former smokers.
  • Less than 16 percent of people diagnosed with lung cancer survive 5 years post-diagnosis because of limited early detection opportunities.
  • There is no widely available, effective early diagnostic test available today.

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