Supporting the Advancement of Science
March for Science San Diego - April 22, 2017
Making Strides Against Breast Cancer
We were proud to participate in the American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer event at Balboa Park on October 16, 2016.
Cancer is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. In the United States, it is estimated that 1,658, 370 new cases will be diagnosed in 2015 and almost 600,00 will die from the disease (www.cancer.gov).
Cancer is considered a collection of related diseases where the underlying mechanism is the result of uncontrolled cell division and invasion into the surrounding tissue. Many cancers form solid tumors, which are masses of extra cells. These cancer cells can influence the function of normal cells, molecules and blood vessels that surround and feed the tumor – an area referred to as the microenvironment.
Cancer arises from genetic mutations that control cell function. Cancer-causing genetic changes can be inherited, as well being caused from exposure to environmental stressors such as excessive sunlight, smoking, toxic pesticides and chemicals, and unhealthy eating habits.
A healthy lifestyle and avoidance of known cancer-causing substances is key to primary cancer prevention. Early detection and treatment are also important, especially for those at-risk populations genetically predisposed to developing the disease.
Support and Involvement
Advocacy groups and cancer researchers share a common goal of eradicating cancer. PRISM is dedicated to addressing the concerns of advocacy groups that include: increasing therapeutic options, personalizing treatment to the individual, decreasing toxicity and thus improving quality of life, and increasing the speed at which new therapeutics become available.
PRISM is actively involved in supporting cancer advocacy. In addition to providing connections, contacts, and useful information to local and national groups, PRISM will seek regular participation from local advocates and members of the community affected by cancer. PRISM scientists will present their findings to these representatives of the cancer community and seek their input on how their research efforts can be better focused to help address the challenges faced by cancer patients and survivors.
Members of the institute are active participants in local events that support cancer charity foundations and causes, such as those sponsored by the American Cancer Society, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. PRISM is proud of its connection with the San Diego affiliate of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure who serves as a breast cancer advocacy group for the institute.
Scientists at PRISM have developed novel approaches to treating cancer. Significant discoveries include:
- New tumor models that faithfully replicate clinical therapeutic responses.
- Endothelial cells lining the blood vessels create significant drug delivery barriers that can severely reduce the effectiveness of intravenously administered drugs.
- These endothelial cells can provide accessible targets to drugs circulating in the bloodstream and the targets can be exploited to act as transporters to deliver drugs and agents directly into the tumor.
By targeting tumor-specific endothelial cell proteins, cancer-killing drugs can be delivered directly inside the tumor, thus sparing the surrounding normal tissue from toxicity. PRISM is dedicated to rapidly translating these discoveries into the clinic to improve the lives of patients.
Additional Information and Resources:
The National Cancer Institute (cancer.gov)
Mayo Clinic (mayoclinic.com)
Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program (trdrp.org)
California Breast Cancer Research Program (cbcrp.org)
Susan G Komen for the Cure (ww5.komen.org)
American Cancer Society (cancer.org)