How Your Donations Are Contributing to the Fight Against Lung Cancer
To date, the Tom Zangas Memorial Lung Cancer Foundation through the generosity of many has provide more than$275,000 for lung cancer research. Below is an update on the grants and how your donations have helped fight this dreaded disease
• A grant of $50,000 is part of a pool of more than $2 million supporting research at 22 institutions through the Lung Cancer Research Foundation. Included in the 22 is research at Weill Cornell Medical Center, MIT, and the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Among the research issues are finding ways to identify genes that can overcome a cancer cell’s resistance to treatment. Another grant is focused on using immunotherapy and radiation to treat patients.
• A $25,000 grant to Dr. Abraham Chachoua at NYU Langone Cancer Center, who valiantly tried to extend Tom’s life. The grant funds his research into immunotherapy, seeking drugs to free up a body’s immune system to fight the spread of cancer cells.
• The first grant ($50,000) at Yale University sought to understand how aggressive lung cancer cells hijack the machinery of a normal lung cell to adapt and thrive in other organs. The research team, headed by Dr. Don Nguyen, investigated new therapeutic targets to block this process and recently discovered a novel pathway that inhibits the metastasis of lung adenocarcinoma, the most frequent cancer sub-type. As a result of this and other work, Dr. Nguyen has been able to secure over $2 million in follow-on funding.
• A $50,000 grant funded research at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center into understanding the mechanisms through which cancer cells become resistant to drugs. The research, led by Dr. Andrea Ventura, is refining a mouse model of lung cancer mutation to explore why patients acquire a resistance to a “targeted” drug that in the initial stages results in a dramatic response and significantly prolongs survival. Dr. Ventura has begun to disseminate the knowledge gained from these experiments by presenting the preliminary findings at several scientific conferences.