HERA awards OSB Grants annually and other grants occasionally to scientists with “outside the box” ideas regarding the research of new directions in the basic research, treatment, early detection, and prevention of ovarian cancer.
Ovarian Cancer Research Needs to Become a Priority if We are to Make Progress
The mission of the HERA Women’s Cancer Foundation is to stop the loss of mothers, sisters, daughters, aunts, wives, partners and girlfriends from ovarian cancer. We do that by funding cutting edge research to find new directions in ovarian cancer treatment, prevention and early detection.
Currently no effective test exists to reliably diagnose the disease early when the chance for survival is greatest. Current treatment protocols have not appreciably altered mortality from this disease. Incidence rates have decreased only slightly, and much more work needs to be done. Our priority is to understand this disease so that a test for early detection and more effective treatments can be developed.
Because there are not the numbers of well survivors to raise awareness for ovarian cancer, research has been grossly under funded. Progress is stalled due to lack of adequate research dollars. HERA is working to change these facts through our OSB Grant Program, participating at National Cancer Institute forums and on the national advocacy front.
The HERA Women’s Cancer Foundation recently established a new grant focused on the cause, early detection, treatment, and/or understanding of ovarian cancer. The Sean Patrick Multidisciplinary Collaborative Grant provides $50,000 for a cross-disciplinary project that is collaborative in nature. The application must identify two (or more) scientists with different yet complementary skills and explain how these skills will be synergistic in addressing the ovarian cancer problem. HERA is proud to announce that the 2013 Sean Patrick Grant was awarded to Dr. Daniel Vallera and Dr. Daniel Kaufman from the University of Minnesota. Their exciting research, “Recruiting the Immune System to Attack Ovarian Cancer,” targets ovarian cancer stem cells using the Natural Killers cells of the immune system to destroy ovarian cancer. Click here to read more about their work.
In just over a decade, prostate cancer has seen 5 year survival rates climb to 99% (SEER).* Ovarian cancer has seen very little appreciable gains. Five year survival continues to hover around 50% (SEER).* The numbers do not tell the whole story either as most women are in continual treatment for the years they are alive unlike other cancers that produce longer disease free periods, so quality of life for many living with ovarian cancer is poor.
Ovarian cancer has seen a jump in deaths of close to 18% in the last 3 years alone. (ACS).** We want increased funding for research and access to surgical standard of care (less than half of all women nationally receive surgery by a gyn/oncologist, considered by the NCI to be standard of care) so that we too can make progress similar to that seen for prostate cancer.
Your support is critical to finding solutions to this disease. HERA invests at least 85% of funds raised in research and awareness programs to stop the loss of women from ovarian cancer.
* SEER Cancer Statistics Review 1975-2002, National Cancer Institute
** American Cancer Society