2015 Cancer Grant Winners Announced

2015 Cancer Grant Winners Announced

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.@MaryKay Fndn announces 2015 #cancer #grant winners. Learn more about their process: http://3bl.me/9dnwvf
Monday, June 29, 2015 - 3:15pm

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5 Things You Need To Know About Our Research

This week, The Mary Kay Foundation℠ announces its 2015 cancer grant recipients.

This process isn't taken lightly. A group of prominent medical doctors and researchers have been poring over more than 60 applications since February.

I read the winning applications. It's not light reading for people like me with no medical background. Medical research is even complicated for my husband, a rheumatologist in private practice.

So I won't attempt to explain the research studies. Many doctors wouldn't be able to do it either.

Instead, here's what you need to know about the winning grants.

1.   The Mary Kay Foundation℠ funds mostly "translational" research in ovarian, uterine, breast and cervical cancers. This means research applying findings from basic science to meaningful health outcomes. Ultimately, this type of research is most likely to lead to improving diagnosis, prognosis, prevention or treatment.

2.   All of the research funded takes place at accredited medical schools. This year's recipients include the University of California, Johns Hopkins University, Penn State College of Medicine and UT Southwestern Medical Center. You won't find unqualified researchers or pseudo-science among our recipients.

3.   Research language is complicated because it's specific. Studies often focus on very specific genes, proteins and enzymes. They often have names that resemble alphabet soup to me. Yet each letter and number represents very specific information. Sometimes research studies can be simplified, but that usually means you're not getting the whole picture. And that's usually OK too because we wouldn't understand the whole picture!

4.   All parts of research are important. Even if a study doesn't result in a new drug discovery, it can be vital in the giant puzzle of cancer. And even a failed study in one sense can lead to a new discovery.

5.   Our grant recipients include a wide variety of research. Projects include: harnessing the immune system to treat breast cancer; tackling metastatic breast cancer, suppressing cervical cancer's progression and an early detection method for ovarian cancer.

As the grant projects get underway, we hope to bring you more details from the researchers.

Stacy Graves is contributing editor of The Mary Kay Foundation℠ blog. You can connect with her at stacy.graves@me.com, or follow her on social media at: FacebookLinkedInPinterest.