Greenwich-based Breast Cancer Alliance honored by Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center

Each year the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center salutes individuals, groups and organizations from across the country and around the globe during the one hundred, an annual event celebrating those who are making a difference in the fight against cancer in inspiring and often revolutionary ways. Greenwich-based organization Breast Cancer Alliance (BCA) is among the one hundred 2016 honorees that will be recognized in Boston at this signature event on Tuesday, May 24. BCA was chosen from a list of nearly 700 nominees.

The BCA funding of leading-edge breast cancer research gives it impact far beyond its size. This year, BCA celebrated its 20th anniversary and surpassed the $20 million mark in grant awards.

Founded in 1996 by Mary Waterman, who died a year later from breast cancer, BCA has become one of the most prominent breast cancer organizations in the U.S. Its mission is to improve survival rates and quality of life through better prevention, early detection, treatment and cure. To promote those goals, the Greenwich, Connecticut-based organization provides seed money, scientific venture capital, for leading-edge breast cancer research programs that have not yet qualified for federal grants. It also funds post-graduate fellowships in breast surgery and allocates funding to support access to breast health care for underserved and uninsured women.

According to Lee Zou, PhD, associate scientific director at the Mass General Cancer Center, BCA grants allow scientists to explore new approaches to the fight against cancer. “I received a BCA Exceptional Project Grant in 2015 to investigate a DNA repair pathway that may lead to an effective new therapeutic target relevant to between 50-75% of all breast cancers,” says Zou. “Because this is brand-new research ground, without this funding my lab would not be able to pursue this avenue of discovery.”

The Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center is part of one of the world’s most distinguished academic medical centers. BCA’s efforts are in keeping with the Cancer Center’s commitment to eradicating cancer through research and innovation and by providing the highest quality of patient care.

Yonni Wattenmaker, executive director of the BCA, and Sharon Phillips, president of the BCA.

Yonni Wattenmaker, executive director of the BCA, and Sharon Phillips, president of the BCA.

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