Hutch scientists receive $25M to solve breast cancer metastasis

New collaboration will target dormant tumor cells, keeping them asleep (or killing them) so they won’t spread.

Translational breast cancer researcher Dr. Cyrus Ghajar, epidemiologist Dr. Christopher Li, and immunotherapy expert Dr. Stanley Riddell of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center have received a four-year, $25 million grant from the U.S. Department of Defense to learn how to kill metastatic cancer’s deadly seeds before they can sprout.

The new Transformative Breast Cancer Consortium Award, specifically designed to fund high-risk/high-reward research, will bring together a dream team of Hutch researchers, breast cancer patient advocates and collaborators at Huntsman Cancer Institute of Salt Lake City and the University of California at San Francisco.

Metastatic breast cancer patients Teri Pollastro and Lynda Weatherby were both initially diagnosed with DCIS or stage zero breast cancer. Years after their early-stage treatment, both went on to develop metastatic disease. The two women now advocate for more research into metastatic breast cancer; Pollastro serves as one of the patient advocates for the TRANCE consortium.

Read the story by