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Siteman Receives Komen Grants

Jason Merrill

April 21, 2008 – Those who register for the Komen St. Louis Race for the Cure do more than raise breast cancer awareness and honor survivors. Their contributions in support of the race make a difference in the lives of thousands of area women.

Up to 75 percent of net proceeds raised through the local Komen race stay in the St. Louis area, funding education, screening, treatment and support programs. The 2007 race resulted in more than $1.8 million in grants to 24 programs.

From that $1.8 million, the Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine received five grants for breast cancer programs at Komen's 10th annual grants awards reception April 18 at the Sheraton Clayton Hotel. A Siteman physician-researcher received an additional grant to research the role of estrogen in breast cancer.

“These are programs that would not be possible without Komen's support,” says Susan Kraenzle, manager of the Joanne Knight Breast Health Center at Siteman. The programs that received funds include:

  • Tightening the Safety Net: Caring for Underserved People through Community Alliances and Navigation
    Kraenzle and her team at the breast health center provide free screening mammograms for more 2,000 uninsured or underinsured women throughout Komen’s St. Louis service area.

  • The Navigator Project
    This program addresses the needs of women from medically underserved areas who are undergoing diagnostic and treatment procedures for breast cancer through direct contact, coordination of services and referral to community and social service resources.

  • The St. Louis Witness Project
    Witness role models share their stories in churches and community settings, linking low-income and uninsured women to breast cancer screening and follow-up care.

  • The Young Women's Breast Cancer Program
    This program provides young women and young survivors with a variety of support and educational opportunities specific to their needs. The program also conducts research aimed at identifying genetic factors related to the development of breast cancer in young women.

  • The Daylight Project: Pushing Back Shadow Barriers to Breast Health, Early Detection and Timely Treatment for Metro St. Louis Refugee and Immigrant Women
    A multidisciplinary effort that promotes linguistically and culturally appropriate dialogue about breast health and breast cancer that leads to healthy choices by women in refugee and immigrant communities.

In addition to those outreach programs, Matthew Ellis, MB, BChir, PhD, Anheuser-Busch Chair in Medical Oncology at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and chief of medical oncology at Washington University School of Medicine, was awarded a CRAFT grant, which funds local research and clinical trials. Ellis will use the grant to support his efforts to complete genomic profiling on over 250 tumor samples from women with estrogen-positive breast cancer.

The 2008 Komen St. Louis Race for the Cure will be held June 21 in downtown St. Louis. For more information about joining Siteman’s team for the race, click here.