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AACR, BCRF award inaugural grants in translational breast cancer research
Date:10/11/2007

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Fifty-six grant applications were received and resulted in three awards, each for $233,333, to support promising research projects that could lead to individualized therapeutic options for breast cancer treatment in the near future.

Mayers research project, titled Combined Endocrine and ErbB Inhibition in ER+/HER2+ Breast Cancers, will address resistance to endocrine therapies. Through a Phase II study, she seeks to learn if the combination of an aromatase inhibitor with an EGFR/HER2 inhibitor will work better in preventing failure of tumors to respond to anti-hormonal treatment. Mayer hopes that her research will reduce mortality in patients with hormone-responsive HER2-positive breast cancer.

Welms research, The MSP Pathway as a Therapeutic Target in Aggressive Breast Cancer, will build upon her earlier studies which found that overexpression of the macrophage- stimulating protein (MSP) pathway drives progression of breast cancer. She validated the clinical relevance of this finding through gene expression data gathered from patients with early- stage breast cancer, showing that overexpression of three genes within the MSP pathway served as highly accurate indicators of poor prognosis in patients with early breast cancer. Her current research seeks to translate these findings to the clinic by developing a diagnostic test for overexpression of the MSP pathway as a biomarker for poor prognosis and to carry out preclinical tests of three MSP pathway inhibitors in order to block growth and/or metastasis of breast cancer.

Yee will look at Gene Expression Profiling to Predict Response to anti-IGF Therapy. This research builds upon his long-term goal of demonstrating that the insulin-like growth factor receptor (IGF1R) is an excellent target for breast cancer therapy. Yee hypothesizes that expression of specific insulin receptor substrate adaptor proteins link IGF1R to identifiable
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Contact: Jennifer Ryan
jennifer.ryan@aacr.org
267-646-0558
American Association for Cancer Research
Source:Eurekalert

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