Raising money so that we can improve the lives of those suffering from the breast cancer while simultaneously working to improve their odds is a big undertaking. But it’s only half the battle.
Maintaining the level of operational efficiency necessary to maximize the impact of your contributions is critical. So, too, is ensuring that we’re funding the projects and programs that will make a real difference.
To that end, we work with some of the world’s foremost authorities on breast cancer to guide our grant making. The Pink Agenda makes two types of grants - research grants and direct care grants.
We rely on the Breast Cancer Research Foundation’s (BCRF) esteemed board of scientific advisors to guide our research-related grant making. Based on the belief that some of the most important advances in understanding the disease will come when we allow brilliant minds to pursue some of their most creative theories, the board invites select scientists from leading universities and academic medical centers around the world to submit proposals outlining creative new directions in clinical and/or translational research that are in need of seed funding. The Pink Agenda then fully funds one of these projects with a named grant and shares semiannual updates on the research with its supporters.
2017 GRANT: BCRF - Dr. Ewald [Show]
The Pink Agenda’s 2016-2017 research grant supports the work of BCRF grantee Dr. Andrew Ewald and his research focused on identifying the molecules driving metastatic cancer spread in the effort to enable the development of targeted therapies. This is the second year The Pink Agenda has awarded support to Dr. Ewald and his lab.
Andrew J. Ewald earned his BS in physics from Haverford College and his PhD in biochemistry and molecular biophysics from the California Institute of Technology. He is currently an associate professor in the Departments of Cell Biology and Oncology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His laboratory has pioneered the use of 3D culture techniques to study the growth and invasion of breast cancer cells.
Breast cancer is most dangerous for patients when it has spread to distant organs, a process referred to as metastasis. Dr. Ewald's lab has made significant progress in determining how a breast cancer cell acquires the ability to leave the primary tumor and spread through the body. Dr. Ewald and his team are now focused on understanding how small groups of cancer cells acquire the ability to grow in new organs and become life threatening metastases.
The ultimate goal is to develop new methods to identify the patients at the greatest risk of metastasis and to develop new therapies to prevent metastatic outgrowth.
2014 and 2015 GRANTS: BCRF - Dr. Zellars [Show]
The Pink Agenda’s 2014 and 2015 research grants supported the work of BCRF grantee Dr. Richard Zellars, who is focused on developing innovative treatment strategies, combining radiation therapy with others, for patients with harder-to-treat forms of breast cancer.
One component of his study is a first-of-its-kind, early-phase clinical trial that assesses the concurrent use of partial breast irradiation with chemotherapy. The second component of Dr. Zellars’ project examines whether replacing chemotherapy with PARP inhibitors, a less toxic class of drugs recently shown to be effective in some breast cancers, would improve patient outcomes if administered before radiation therapy.
Since PARP inhibitors and radiation share similar mechanisms of action on cancer cells, researchers have seen in pre-clinical trials that combining the two significantly increases effectiveness as compared with chemotherapy. Also, because chemotherapy combined with radiation therapy does work for every patient, it is Dr. Zellars’ goal to develop an alternative treatment that improves the rate of therapeutic response.
Dr. Zellars believes that these new applications of radiation in combination with chemotherapy will not only maximize treatment outcome but also reduce the overall length of treatment required and the risk of recurrence. Also, for those patients who have experienced limited benefits from chemotherapy, Dr. Zellars hopes that the use of PARP inhibitors would help improve results.
2013: Breast Cancer Research Foundation – Unrestricted Grants
2012: Breast Cancer Research Foundation – Dr. William G. Kaelin, Jr., Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School
DIRECT CARE GRANT
The Pink Agenda also works with the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s Program for Young Women with Breast Cancer to identify a project that will have a direct and positive impact on women’s cancer care. Focused on the unique needs of young women who have been diagnosed with the disease, Dana-Farber’s Program for Young Women with Breast Cancer was the first program of its kind in New England and remains one of the only such programs in the United States. Since it was founded in 2005, it has shepherded more than 1,000 young women on their journey through and beyond cancer, addressing their needs with comprehensive care and support together with a range of programs tailored specifically for them. In so doing, it has become a model for women’s cancer care across the country.
2016 GRANT: Dr. Partridge [Show]
The Pink Agenda’s 2017 Direct Care Grant supports the work of Dr. Ann Partridge, the founder and director of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute's Program for Young Women with Breast Cancer. Her studies are focused on survivorship and breast cancer recurrence in young women initially diagnosed with breast cancer under the age of 40.
Taking prior research that has revealed that young age is a risk factor for breast cancer recurrence and death, despite the fact that young women conventionally receive more intensive treatment than older women. Dr. Partridge's study is focused on young women's usage of endocrine therapy, specifically why women may not choose to fully adhere to the treatment. Because endocrine therapy reduces the risk of recurrence and saves lives, Dr. Partridge and her researchers are seeking to more fully evaluate and address the problem of non-adherence in young breast cancer survivors.
Dr. Partridge and colleagues will survey medical records and review data from a large ongoing study that has been following over 1300 women diagnosed with breast cancer at age 40 or younger with the goal of increasing understanding of the problem of non-adherence in this population. They hope to use the new insight from this research to inform interventions to optimize endocrine therapy adherence among young women with breast cancer, which should ultimately lead to reduced recurrence and improved survival rates in this population.
Ann Partridge, MD, MPH is a medical oncologist and clinical researcher focused on improving the care and outcomes of patients with cancer, with a focus on treatment, survivorship, and psychosocial issues facing women with breast cancer. She founded and directs the Program for Young Women with Breast Cancer, and serves as the Director of the Adult Survivorship Program at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Dr. Partridge graduated from Georgetown University, earned her MD at Cornell University, trained in internal medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, and completed hematology and medical oncology fellowships at DFCI. She received a master’s degree in public health at the Harvard School of Public Health.
2016 GRANT: Dr. Stover [Show]
The Pink Agenda’s 2016 Direct Care Grant supports the work of Dr. Daniel Stover and his research project at the Dana-Farber Program for Young Women with Breast Cancer focused on triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC).
Helping Ourselves, Helping Others: The Young Women Breast Cancer Study at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is a unique opportunity to study the genomic characteristics of young women with triple-negative breast cancer. The study includes 1,300 young women, 150 of whom were diagnosed with TNBC. Dr. Stover is closely studying the genomic clinical data with the goal of advancing doctors’ ability to direct the appropriate treatment to the appropriate patient at the appropriate time – a hallmark of ‘precision cancer medicine’. Ultimately this project will provide important advances in understanding the genomic characteristics in young women with triple-negative breast cancer and improve our ability to support and treat them from diagnosis through treatment.
Dr. Stover is an Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Dr. Stover’s clinical and research focus is resistance to therapy in breast cancer. Using computational approaches with large transcriptional datasets, he evaluates the role of individual cellular pathways in resistance to chemotherapy in breast cancer. In parallel with computational analyses, he pursues experimental approaches to study resistance using patient-derived models of breast cancer in the lab of Joan Brugge, PhD at Harvard Medical School.
2015 GRANT: Dr. Rosenberg [Show]
The Pink Agenda’s 2015 direct care grant is funding Shoshana Rosenberg, ScD, MPH and her post doctoral research work in psychosocial issues in breast cancer survivors conducted under the mentorship of Ann Partridge, MD, founder and director of the Program for Young Women with Breast Cancer, director of the Adult Survivorship Program, and associate professor of medicine at the Harvard Medical School.
Shoshana’s research is focused on improving surgical decision-making in young women with breast cancer, where preliminary findings suggest that young women are suffering from inaccurate risk perceptions and substantial anxiety at diagnosis. Shoshana reveals there is concern that these factors may be hindering optimal decision-making.
Shoshana designed her research to further understand decision-making surrounding early breast cancer and to develop an intervention to promote patient centered, shared decision-making. These studies and Shoshana's work is focused on improving the care and outcomes, both medical and psychosocial, of women with breast cancer and cancer survivors in general, and The Pink Agenda is proud to support it.
2014 GRANT: Dr. Truong [Show]
The Pink Agenda’s 2014 direct care grant is funding Sandy Truong’s (MD Candidate, Harvard Medical School, 2016) work in connection with the cardiac preservation study conducted by Ann Partridge, MD, founder and director of the Program for Young Women with Breast Cancer, director of the Adult Survivorship Program, and associate professor of medicine at the Harvard Medical School.
The study is intended to help physicians deliver better cardiac care for breast cancer patients and survivors by increasing the collective understanding of the value of baseline cardiac screening tests for breast cancer patients. This is particularly important, given the fact that women who receive radiation therapy for breast cancer face an increased risk of suffering heart attacks and dying from heart disease and that some of the most successful chemotherapies can lead to cardiac complications over time.
Dr. Partridge and Sandy Truong believe that the results of this study will lead to more informed treatment decisions for all women before they embark on therapies that potentially jeopardize their cardiac health over time, and The Pink Agenda is proud to support it.
2013 GRANT: Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s Program for Young Women with Breast Cancer, Unrestricted Grant
The Nitty Gritty Financial Details
Our Tax ID #: 20-8890755
The Pink Agenda's most recent Form 990
Contact us for copies of our financial statements.