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The following awards were presented at the 2013 CTRC-AACR San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium in December:

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* Sir Michael R. Stratton, PhD, FRS, Director of the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute in Cambridge, was awarded the sixth annual American Association for Cancer Research Distinguished Lectureship in Breast Cancer Research for his outstanding research contributions in the area of cancer genomics and genetics. He mapped and identified BRCA2, and through the Cancer Genome Project, which he initiated at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, identified genetic mutations key to the development of several types of cancer including the BRAF gene in malignant melanoma, which led to the development of BRAF inhibitors. Stratton delivered the accompanying lecture "Signatures of Mutational Processes in Human Cancer."


* Jason S. Carroll, PhD, Senior Group Leader at Cancer Research UK and a fellow of Clare College at the University of Cambridge, received the sixth annual AACR Outstanding Investigator Award for Breast Cancer Research for his research on estrogen receptor biology in breast cancer, which led to the identification of how the estrogen receptor interacts with DNA to drive gene expression, what proteins are used, and what occurs during resistance to antiestrogen therapies. His work has played a role in the understanding of both estrogen and androgen receptors, and therefore has applications in both breast and prostate cancers. Carroll delivered the lecture "Understanding Estrogen Receptor Transcription in Breast Cancer."


* Edith A. Perez, MD, Deputy Director at Large of the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center, received the Susan G. Komen Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction in Clinical Research. The award is presented to a clinical or translational researcher who has advanced the identification of new prevention, detection, or treatment approaches for breast cancer, and has promoted their incorporation into clinical care. Perez led the international breast cancer clinical trial that showed that the addition of trastuzumab to adjuvant chemotherapy significantly reduces recurrence and improves survival in patients with HER2-positive invasive breast cancer. Her current work aims to develop reliable biomarkers to predict response to trastuzumab. She delivered the lecture "HER2 translational research and its impact on breast cancer."


* Gordon B. Mills, MD, PhD, Chairman of the Department of Systems Biology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, received the Susan G. Komen Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction in Basic Science. The award is presented to a researcher whose scientific discoveries or novel technologies have added substantively to the understanding of the basic biology of breast cancer and the intrinsic molecular processes that drive the disease-or whose work has bridged the gap between basic research and patient care. Mills' work has characterized several molecules and signaling pathways that are key to breast cancer cell survival, growth, and propensity to metastasize.



He has studied lysophospholipids, specifically the membrane-derived lipids, lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) and sphingosine 1 phosphate (S1P); and has uncovered their role in controlling breast tumorigenesis, invasion, and metastasis. He and his colleagues have also made key observations about the effects of aberrations in the phosphatidylinositol 2 kinase (PI3K) pathway on breast cancer. His current work focuses on the effect of genomic aberrations in cancer cells in the context of interconnected and interacting pathways to identify rational approaches to combinatorial therapy of cancer. He delivered the lecture "A systems approach to individualizing breast cancer therapy."

JASON S. CARROLL, PH... - Click to enlarge in new windowJASON S. CARROLL, PHD. JASON S. CARROLL, PHD
EDITH A. PEREZ, MD. ... - Click to enlarge in new windowEDITH A. PEREZ, MD. EDITH A. PEREZ, MD
GORDON B. MILLS, MD,... - Click to enlarge in new windowGORDON B. MILLS, MD, PHD. GORDON B. MILLS, MD, PHD