Komen Grants $2.9 million for research at Johns Hopkins



Maryland Researchers Receive $2,910,000 in Research Funding


DALLAS – Sept. 25, 2018 – Susan G. Komen®, the world’s leading breast cancer organization, today announced an additional investment of nearly $26 million to fund 62 new research projects that seek to answer some of the toughest questions facing breast cancer. This new funding is part of the organization’s efforts to reduce the number of breast cancer deaths in the U.S. by 50 percent by 2026 and brings its total research investment to $988 million to date – the largest nonprofit investment outside the U.S. government.


The grants include $2,910,000 in new funding for research at two institutions in Maryland, bringing Komen’s total research investment in Maryland to $43,454,298 since 1982.


“This year, Komen is investing in a number of areas that will help us achieve our bold goal and save lives. We are seeking answers to why our current drugs work for some patients, but not all, or why they work at first, but later become ineffective.” said Komen Chief Scientific Advisor, George Sledge, M.D., Chief of Oncology at Stanford University Department of Medicine. “We are also looking into aggressive forms of the disease like triple negative and inflammatory breast cancer, which tend to have poorer outcomes. By investigating novel techniques and therapies, we hope to bring new treatment options to patients.”


The newly announced grants will investigate critical areas in breast cancer research, including (but not limited to) projects focused on one or more of the following:


  • Drug Resistance and Metastasis (40 grants, representing 70 percent of the grants awarded)
  • Triple Negative Breast Cancer (23 grants)
  • New Treatments (38 grants) such as Immunotherapies (9 grants)
  • Health Disparities (8 grants)


This year, Komen’s competitive grant program for young investigators was entirely focused on drug resistance and metastatic disease. “Komen continues its long-standing investment in the next generation of scientists, to ensure that brilliant researchers whose careers are just beginning have funding to pursue their novel ideas,” said Komen Chief Scientific Advisor, Jennifer Pietenpol, Ph.D., Executive Vice President for Research and Director of the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. “We are proud that this investment includes opportunities for 23 innovative and inspired researchers to lead the way in making breast cancer discoveries that will improve care for all and help save lives.”

“More than 41,000 women and men will lose their lives to breast cancer this year alone. I lost my mother to the disease a few years back, and I myself have been treated for aggressive triple negative breast cancer. The idea that it could impact my daughters is unacceptable,” said Komen President and CEO Paula Schneider. “We all have a personal reason or passion that we support the fight against breast cancer, and we’re proud to invite people to support the work that means the most to them. It will take all of us working together to save lives and ultimately end this disease.”


Komen’s Investments in Maryland

Komen’s research program is funded in part by contributions from Komen’s nationwide Network of Affiliates, which directs a portion of funds raised locally to Komen’s national research program, while also investing in vital community programs that serve local women and men facing breast cancer.


Since 1993, Komen Maryland has funded $20,808,006 to community programs serving local women and men, while contributing $10,583,210 to Komen research.


“We are so thankful for the friends, family and neighbors that fight alongside us, helping to reduce the number of breast cancer deaths in Maryland, both on the ground and through research,” said Michael Jessup, Executive Director of Komen Maryland.


In Maryland, Komen is granting to the following researchers:


Komen Scholar Antonio Wolff, M.D., Ph.D., from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, will receive $400,000 to continue to run a pilot clinical trial aimed at improving communications between patients, caregivers and doctors in an outpatient setting. The study will determine if improved communication leads to better management of the patient’s care and better quality of life.


The Obesity Society received $10,000 to support two Susan G. Komen® Breast Cancer Challenge Awards. Junior investigators were invited to submit short proposals for research that would shed light on how obesity is associated with poorer outcomes for metastatic breast cancer patients or the role obesity plays in breast cancer disparities.


The Translational Breast Cancer Research Consortium (TBCRC), a collaboration of 19 of the top U.S. academic medical centers administered out of Johns Hopkins University, will receive $2.5 million, bringing Komen’s total investment in TBCRC to $12.5 million to date. TBCRC develops and conducts innovative, high-impact, biologically-driven translational research projects and clinical trials investigating new treatment approaches for breast cancer. Led by Komen Scholar, Antonio Wolff, M.D., the TBCRC has developed 50 clinical trials, about half of which have focused on metastatic breast cancer, drug resistance and/or recurrence since 2006.


Research has been a cornerstone of Komen’s work since opening its doors in 1982. Komen also works to inspire action through advocacy and public policy, to mobilize communities through support services and opportunities to make a local impact, and provide the care that patients need (including screening, diagnostics, treatment and navigation).


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. Komen has set a Bold Goal to reduce the current number of breast cancer deaths by 50 percent in the U.S. by 2026. Since its founding in 1982, Komen has funded more than $988 million in research and provided more than $2.2 billion in funding to screening, education, treatment and psychosocial support programs serving millions of people 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. That promise has become Komen’s promise to all people facing breast cancer. Visit komen.org or call 1-877 GO KOMEN. Connect with us on social at ww5.komen.org/social.


Grants are contingent upon signed and executed contracts with Komen.