The Maryland affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation has provided a total of $400,000 in grant funding for collaborative and innovative projects in breast cancer research, treatment and education at the University of Maryland. Two grants were made to the University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center (UMGCC) and one was awarded to the University of Maryland School of Nursing.
Stacey Garrett-Ray, M.D., medical director of the Baltimore City Cancer Program, an initiative of the University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center, has received a grant of $65,000 to provide breast reconstruction services to medically underserved women. The funds will be used to pay for breast reconstruction surgery following mastectomy for several uninsured, low income women in Baltimore City who are being treated at the Greenebaum Cancer Center.
A grant of $135,000 was awarded to Kurtis E. Bachman, Ph.D., assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology in the University of Maryland School of Medicine and a breast cancer researcher at the Greenebaum Cancer Center. The grant supports the research of post-doctoral fellow Michele Vitolo, who is creating a model system to study the loss of a tumor suppressor protein, PTEN, that is observed in approximately 40 percent of primary breast cancers and is associated with a worse prognosis. The goal of the research is to study the potential use of PTEN loss as a biomarker to predict a patient's response to current breast cancer treatments and to also identify and develop novel therapeutic strategies that selectively target cancer cells with this genetic abnormality.
In addition, Sandra McLeskey, Ph.D., R.N. , assistant dean for research and a professor at the University of Maryland School of Nursing has received $200,000 as part of a three-year program for increasing awareness about the prevention and detection of breast cancer among nursing school faculty and students.
For more information about breast cancer research and treatment and the programs and services available at the University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Cancer Center, please visit www.umgcc.org, or call 1-800-888-8823.