With more than 800,000 new cases of cancer among women in the United States expected this year, according to the American Cancer Society, almost everyone is touched by the disease. Cancer knows no boundaries and remains the second leading cause of death in women – two reasons The Mary Kay Foundation supports research of cancers affecting women at top medical schools and research facilities across the nation with a new slate of grants totaling $1.3 million.
After a meticulous review of more than 60 applicants by The Mary Kay Foundation Research Review Committee, 13 grants in the amount of $100,000 each were awarded to some of the most-respected institutions in the country. The review committee is composed of prominent medical scientists and doctors who select the most promising research projects for the highly competitive grants. Since its inception in 1996, the Foundation has been committed to the cause, investing more than $22 million to date toward research for cancers affecting women.
"Support from The Mary Kay Foundation has enabled promising projects to further cancer research and discovery, ultimately leading to improved longevity and quality of life for thousands of cancer patients," said Jerry W. Shay, Ph.D., Professor and Vice Chairman of the Department of Cell Biology for The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas and Chair of The Mary Kay Foundation Research Review Committee. "Research is at the heart of the relentless pursuit to help prevent, detect and treat cancer each and every day in the United States. From new therapies to early detection tools, grants like these give scientists the opportunity to pursue such goals."
The 2015 grant slate includes a wide range of critical research areas. At the University of Washington in Seattle, Wash., medical scientists will use the grant funds to explore early detection of ovarian cancer using DNA extracted from routine Pap smears. At the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, Colo., researchers are studying new tools in preventing and treating cervical cancer. At Penn State College of Medicine in Hershey, Pa., the goal of the research project is to identify genetic dissection of breast cancer metastasis.
"While The Mary Kay Foundation's Cancer Research Grant Program is focused exclusively on cancers affecting women, we know the Foundation's grants have fueled research benefitting all cancers," said Michael Lunceford, Mary Kay Inc. Senior Vice President of Public Affairs and Chairman of the Board for The Mary Kay Foundation. "By continuing to support top medical scientists at some of the best and most-respected research institutions in the country, we know we are advancing the fight against cancer while continuing Mary Kay's mission of enriching women's lives."