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Canadian Cancer Society

The Canadian Cancer Society is committed to eradicating cancer and improving the lives of people with cancer. We have more impact against more cancers in more communities than any other cancer charity. The impact comes from leading cancer prevention initiatives, funding outstanding cancer research and delivering trusted information and compassionate support.

The Canadian Cancer Society provides information on all cancers and funds research on all cancers. With a network of thousands of volunteers, and 24-hour access to cancer.ca, we reach every community that cancer does. Our activities are funded almost entirely by courageous giving from community fundraising, planned giving, major gifts, events and other revenue development initiatives. Only a small percentage comes from government sources.

Where are your dollars being invested?

Cancer is a leading cause of death and the majority of patients will die from the formation of metastases rather than from their primary tumour. This is largely based on the fact that most metastases are resistant to conventional therapies. For example, despite considerable advances in the diagnosis, molecular classification and treatment of breast cancer, more than 5,000 women in Canada alone were expected to die in 2015 of metastatic disease.  

Dr Stephen Robbins and his team are investigating how and why cancer cells spread (metastasize) to certain organs in the body, namely the liver and lungs. The researchers have discovered a new drug that dramatically blocks the metastatic spread of breast cancer, osteosarcoma and melanoma in preclinical models. In addition, they will shed light on how the innate immune system (specifically cells called neutrophils) is involved in the metastatic process and thus provide a new therapeutic paradigm in the treatment of metastatic disease.

They have had particular interest in understanding how cancer cells leave their primary site and invade the surrounding tissue. The team will apply their newly discovered drug in the preclinical setting with the aim of moving it into a clinical trial. Moreover, metastasis is not unique for breast cancer and thus this therapeutic agent will have broader applications for other cancers including melanoma, osteosarcoma, pancreatic cancer and colorectal cancer.

 
 

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