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American Cancer Society and Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance Launch New Ovarian Cancer Research Collaboration
Jun 13, 2019
Four multidisciplinary teams to be funded to study survivorship
...scientists and organizations are recognizing the need to break down barriers and work together to find answers. This approach is particularly important in ovarian cancer, a disease for which new innovative treatments are urgently needed.

In a new collaboration, the American Cancer Society and Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance have joined forces to fund multidisciplinary research projects to explore new ways of detecting, treating, and preventing ovarian cancer relapse and for improving quality of life among those diagnosed with ovarian cancer. The two organizations are committing to a total investment of $8 million to sustain four research teams over four years.

Ovarian cancer accounts for more deaths than any other cancer of the female reproductive system and is the fifth leading cause of cancer death overall among women. The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2019, about 22,530 women in the United States will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer and about 13,980 women will die from the disease.

Four out of five women diagnosed with ovarian cancer have advanced disease, which is associated with an increased risk of persistent and recurrent cancer following initial treatment. While advanced ovarian cancer can be treatable, it is rarely curable. There is currently no way to predict which women in remission will experience short-term versus long-term survival from ovarian cancer, or which women are at risk for high symptom burden during survivorship.

This joint initiative seeks to raise funds to support four multidisciplinary research teams to investigate biological, clinical, and psychosocial factors associated with ovarian cancer outcomes.  A better understanding of these factors will lead to new avenues for detecting, treating, and preventing ovarian cancer relapse, and for improving quality of life. Once initial funding is acquired, a request for proposal/critical peer review process will select the four research teams.

“More and more, scientists and organizations are recognizing the need to break down barriers and work together to find answers,” said William Phelps, Ph.D., Senior Vice President of Extramural Research, American Cancer Society. “This approach is particularly important in ovarian cancer, a disease for which new innovative treatments are urgently needed.”

“We are excited to accelerate breakthroughs in the fight against high grade serous ovarian carcinoma—the deadliest form of the disease-- by collaborating with American Cancer Society,” said Audra Moran, President and CEO, Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance. “Together our two organizations have supported over $135 million in ovarian cancer research since the 1990s, but this new partnership will allow us to multiply our impact.”