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National Lung Cancer Partnership Funds Nine Innovative Research Grants

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Sara Dietze
PCI
(312) 558-1770

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

NATIONAL LUNG CANCER PARTNERSHIP FUNDS NINE INNOVATIVE RESEARCH GRANTS

MADISON, Wis. – Feb. 7, 2012 – The National Lung Cancer Partnership is pleased to announce the winners of its 2012 Lung Cancer Research Grants. This year, the Partnership will award nine grants totaling nearly $1 million as part of the organization’s commitment to encourage young scientists to bring their passion for research to the lung cancer field.

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death of men and women in the United States, yet lung cancer research is woefully underfunded. The Partnership’s grant program, supported by a grassroots movement of more than 100,000 advocates, has grown from two grants in 2005 to nine in 2012. More than $3 million has been awarded in the past seven years, funding innovative research grants that seek to understand lung cancer and develop strategies for earlier detection, smarter treatments and effective patient care. 

“Since the 1970s, survival rates for other types of cancers have dramatically increased, while lung cancer has lagged behind,” said Regina Vidaver, Ph.D., executive director of the National Lung Cancer Partnership. “We consistently seek to increase our commitment to researchers and to patients. This year, we're thrilled to fund the work of nine researchers, providing nine new beacons of hope for those facing lung cancer.”

Young Investigator Research Grants

The Young Investigator Research Grants program is designed to support researchers early in their careers, igniting their interest in lung cancer research and better preparing them to secure further funding later in their careers. Recipients include:

Trever Bivona, M.D., Ph.D. •  Assistant Professor, University of California, San Francisco
Dr. Bivona’s research seeks to understand how gene expression promotes resistance to a particular drug. 

This grant is made possible by A Breath of Hope Lung Foundation.

Khaled Hassan, M.D., M.S.  •  Clinical Lecturer, University of Michigan
Dr. Hassan’s research aims to determine whether blocking a specific protein can make lung cancer cells more responsive to chemotherapy.

Shadia Jalal, M.D.  •  Assistant Professor, Indiana University School of Medicine
Dr. Jalal is examining how a protein important to DNA repair affects the spread of lung cancer.

Naveen Kommajosyula, Ph.D.  •  Research Fellow, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Dr. Kommajosyula’s research aims to understand how to block a particular protein, which would limit cancer cells’ ability to repair their DNA, ultimately leading to cancer cell death. 

This grant is made possible by the National Lung Cancer Partnership and Uniting Against Lung Cancer.

Don Nguyen, Ph.D.  •  Assistant Professor, Yale School of Medicine and Yale Cancer Center
Dr. Nguyen’s research aims to identify the molecules marking cancer stem cells so that they can be used to determine when lung cancer begins to progress. 

This grant is made possible through the Louisiana Hope Research Grant provided by the Louisiana Lung Cancer Partnership.

Kerstin Sinkevicius, Ph.D.  •  Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard Medical School
Dr. Sinkevicius’ research seeks to determine if a specific protein plays a role in the movement of lung cancer cells to new tissues, and how to block it.

Tokihiro Yamamoto, Ph.D.  •  Instructor, Stanford University School of Medicine
Dr. Yamamoto's research aims to develop, optimize and validate a new method for imaging the healthy and unhealthy portions of the lung using four-dimensional computed tomography, which may help doctors perform better targeting of lung cancer tumors during radiation treatment.

Rinat Zaynagetdinov, M.D., Ph.D.  •  Postdoctoral Fellow, Vanderbilt University 
Dr. Zaynagetdinov’s research seeks to understand how myeloid immune system cells present in inflammation promote lung cancer, and how a specific protein complex affects the formation of these cells. 

This grant is made possible by the North Carolina Lung Cancer Partnership

Special thanks to Genentech for supporting the Young Investigator Research Grant Program.

 

Lung Cancer Nursing Research Grant

This grant, in collaboration with the Oncology Nursing Society Foundation, fosters research in areas where knowledge gaps exist for lung cancer oncology nursing practice.

Doris Howell, R.N., Ph.D.  •  RBC Chair, Oncology Nursing Education and Research, Scientist, Psychosocial Oncology and Palliative Care, Princess Margaret Hospital, Toronto, Ontario

Dr. Howell will conduct a clinical trial to study the impact of teaching lung cancer patients techniques and strategies for managing shortness of breath, which can occur due to cancer or its treatments. 

This grant is made possible by the National Lung Cancer Partnership and the Oncology Nursing Society Foundation.

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