National Hereditary Cancer Research Fund
An Urgent Need
by Sue Friedman
One of my favorite conference moments was
announcing the FORCE Hereditary Cancer
Research Fund to drive the research that will
lead to better detection, prevention, and treatment
of hereditary cancer. Why do we need an
HBOC-specific research fund?
- Our community shoulders a disproportionate
cancer burden that must be addressed.
Although almost 1 in 500 people (about
.2% of the population) are genetically predisposed
to breast or ovarian cancer, they
represent about 10% of all breast and ovarian
cancer diagnoses — for every 998 people
in the general population who together carry
90% of the cancer risk, just two of us bear
the remaining 10% of the risk.
- Funding for hereditary cancer is limited.
Most cancer research funding focuses on
larger cancer populations, and obtaining
research funding isn't easy: government
research funding is limited and the request
process is lengthy.
- Our cancers are different. Hereditary cancers
respond differently to certain treatments
than sporadic cancers and require
a different research approach. Because
hereditary cancers often occur at a younger
age before most people begin screening,
and standard detection may be less
effective, studying HBOC families is the
quickest route to discovering better methods
of detection and prevention.
- Options for prevention, detection, and treatment
of hereditary cancer are inadequate.
Too many people are still being diagnosed
with and succumbing to hereditary cancers.
As the voice of hereditary cancer, FORCE
has unmatched insight into the research
needs and priorities of our community. We are
uniquely positioned to identify and expedite
the research that will most benefit our community.
Our National Hereditary Cancer Research
Fund will be the first of its kind. A panel of
experts and consumers will review proposals
to ensure that any research funded will significantly
benefit the high-risk community.
We need your help to build this fund from the
ground up. Visit our
website to learn more
about this effort and
how you can support it.
The Fix Our Genes campaign will endow our research fund.
We welcome your feedback. Please send your comments to Sue
fill out our Newsletter Feedback Form.