Grants Awarded

The METAvivor Research Program was established in 2009 with the specific goal of funding stage IV metastatic breast cancer research to one day, end death from metastatic breast cancer (MBC). The following list includes current and past grant recipients along with their progress reports.

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ACTIVE GRANT RECIPIENTS



2021

Marjan Rafat, PhD

Vanderbilt University – Nashville, TN

Presented by the Bayhill 9 Holers and Friends, Honoring the Memory of Linda Pizzolato

An engineered bone marrow microenvironment model to investigate the impact of stiffness in breast cancer metastasis

Carol Sartorius, PhD

University of Colorado, Denver, CO

Endocrine therapy driven reprogramming of circulating tumor cell-platelet interactions in driving late metastatic spread of ER+ breast cancer

Kornelia Polyak, MD, PhD

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA

Metastatic niche metabolomes and epigenetic heterogeneity in breast cancer

Sara Tolaney, MD, MPH

Susan F. Smith Center for Women’s Cancers, Dana Farber Institute, Boston, MA

Presented by METAvivors of NJ in Memory of Donna Karlis

Enhancing the immunogenicity of PD-L1+ metastatic HR+ breast cancer via DNA damage

Lisa Carey, MD

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC

HARMONY: Harnessing the Analysis of RNA expression and Molecular subtype to Optimize Novel TherapY for metastatic breast cancer

Nikhil Wagle, MD

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Presented by #LightUpMBC Ambassador team in memory of Jessica Moore

Convergent transcriptional states in resistant ER+ metastatic breast cancer

Robert Schneider, PhD

New York University School of Medicine

Presented by Abbey Rapoport

Inhibition of Regulatory T cell (Treg) selective mRNA translation for the treatment of metastatic breast cancer metastasis

Lalita Shevde-Samant, PhD

The University of Alabama at Birmingham

Presented in memory of Heather Holmes

Altering the metastatic immune niche to eradicate established breast cancer metastases

Gangadhara Sareddy PhD

The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

Presented in memory of Erica Griffiths, Founder of Living with MBC DENJPA

Targeting TNBC brain metastases using a brain penetrable KDM1A inhibitor

Davide Ruggero, PhD

University of California, San Francisco

Presented by METAvivor Fundraisers in honor of all people living with metastatic breast cancer

ERα is a novel RNA-binding protein controlling a post-transcriptional program underlying breast cancer metastasis

Efi Kokkotou MD, PhD

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

Presented by Minneapolis Metsquerade in memory of Kim Cesarek

Development of a functional predictor assay of therapeutic responses in Metastatic Breast Cancer

Melanie Hayden Gephart MD, MAS

Stanford University

Presented by Be Bold and Behold in loving memory of honorees Jennie Byram and Erica Griffiths

Halting the Progression of Breast Cancer Brain Metastases By Targeting Tumor-Associated Microglia (TAMs)

Jin Chen, PhD

Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Presented by METAvivor Facebook Fundraisers in honor of all people living with MBC

Targeting EphA2 receptor in breast-to-bone metastasis

Changyan Chen, PhD

Northeastern University

Presented by METAvivor Facebook Fundraisers in honor of all people living with MBC

Targeting MGL for Developing Novel Strategy to Treat Refractory Breast Cancer

Jennifer Wenzel, PhD, MS

Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing, School of Medicine (Oncology)

Presented by METAvivor Facebook Fundraisers in honor of all people living with MBC

Metastatic Treatment Decision Navigation: A Community Health Worker Model to Support Black Breast Cancer Patients and Decision Partners

Dipali Sharma, MS, PhD

Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins

Presented by Color Street Foundation

Racial Disparity in metastatic triple-negative breast cancer in African American women: Unraveling actionable molecular determinants

Pranela Rameshwar, PhD

Rutgers University

Presented by METAvivor Facebook Fundraisers in honor of all people living with MBC

Towards precise treatment for metastatic breast cancer in black patients

Isidore Rigoustos, PhD

Sidney Kimmel Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University

Presented by METAvivor Fundraisers in honor of all people living with MBC

Short RNAs Promote Metastases in an Ancestry-dependent Manner

Melanie Hayden Gephart, MD, MAS

Stanford University

Presented by METAvivor Facebook Fundraisers in honor of all people living with MBC

Identification of Race-Specific Tumor-Immune Interactions in Breast-to-Brain Metastases of Black Women

Rachel Freedman, MD, MPH

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Presented by #LightUpMBC Ambassador team in Memory of Gail Weisbrot

LIFT UP-Optimizing Care and Support for Women with Metastatic Breast Cancer Who Need it Most

Yara Abdou, MD

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Presented in Memory of Chawnte’ Randall

Investigating Survivin as a novel target for immunotherapy in Black women with breast cancer

Jill Bargonetti, PhD

City University of New York (CUNY) at Hunter College

Presented by NWA Metsquerade in Memory of Lisa Quinn and In Honor of Kelli Davis

Targeting Metastatic Breast Cancer Through the Mutant p53-PARP Axis

Wen-Hsuan Yang, PhD

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Presented by Philadelphia Metsquerade in honor of Jacquie Reynolds Beck and Kerry O’Riordan McAdam

Targeting metabolic symbiosis in the breast cancer brain metastasis tumor microenvironment

Christina Wei, MD

City of Hope National Medical Center

Presented by K and J Road To a Cure in honor of Kerry O’Riordan McAdam and Jacquie Reynolds Beck

Hepatic natural killer cell dysregulation facilitates breast cancer liver metastasis

Evanthia Roussos Torres, MD, PhD

University of Southern California, Keck School of Medicine, USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center

The Geaton & JoAnn DeCesaris Family Foundation Grant in memory of Kimberly Stafford

Bi-directional translation of differences in the immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment of primary versus metastatic HER2+ breast cancer

Luis Solorio, PhD

Purdue University

Presented in honor of Susan Marr Williamson

Effect of Motion in the Metastatic Microenvironment

Jawed Siddiqui, PhD

University of Nebraska Medical Center

Presented in memory of Heather Holmes

Therapeutic tareting of GFRAL/RET axis to overcome bone metastasis of breast cancer

Amy Schade, PhD

Brigham & Women's Hospital

Presented in memory of Noel Shubert Weaver, who passed away of triple negative metastatic breast cancer

Developing effective combination therapies for metastatic TNBC by co-targeting epigenetic and oncogenic enzymes

Jennifer Rosenbluth, MD, PhD

University of California San Francisco

Presented in memory of Catherine Hill

Developing therapeutic strategies for metastatic inflammatory breast cancer using patient-derived organoids

Vadim Jucaud, PhD

Terasaki Institute for Biomedical Innovation

Presented by the Moore/Smith Family in memory of Carol Smith, wife, mother, friend and advocate

Microengineered approach to develop personalized monoclonal antibodies for metastatic breast cancer treatment

Daniel Hollern, PhD, BS

The Salk Institute for Biological Studies

Presented by The Orlando Metsquerade in memory of Caitlin Kosma, wife, mother, friend and advocate

Using B cells to eliminate TNBC liver metastases

2020

Adrian Lee, PhD

University of Pittsburgh, UPMC Hillman Cancer Center

Targeting RET for the treatment of breast cancer brain metastasis

Abstract Report

Blake “Eason” Hildreth, DVM, MS, PhD

University of Alabama, Birmingham

Targeting the CSF1R/PU.1 axis and PU.1/BET super-enhancer regulome in breast cancer bone metastasis

Abstract Report

Julie Di Martino, PhD

Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

Targeting dormant breast cancer cells with ACE inhibitors

Abstract Report

Nathan Reticker-Flynn, PhD

Stanford University

Targeting lymph node-induced immune tolerance to treat metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Lou Song, PhD

University of Virginia

Oncogenic TRIM37 is a new driver of metastasis in triple negative breast cancer patients

Abstract Report

Tae-Hyung Kim, PhD

University of New Mexico

Harnessing cell mechanotype to regulate the immune evasion of highly metastatic breast cancer cells

Abstract Report

Reva Basho, MD

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Samuel Oschin Comprehensive Cancer Institute

Presented by Metavivor Facebook Fundraisers

Tucatinib in Combination with Pembrolizumab and Trastuzumab for Patients with HER2+ Breast Cancer Brain Metastases

Abstract Report

Isaac Chan, MD, PhD

UT Southwestern Medical Center

Presented by #Lindasbug: A VW Beetle Fundraiser in Memory of Linda Kreizenbeck

Using natural killer cells to eliminate breast cancer metastases

Abstract Report

Jessica Christenson, PhD

University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus

Presented by Metavivor Facebook Fundraisers

Repurposing Lung Microenvironment Targeted Therapies for the Treatment of Established Breast Cancer Lung Metastases

Abstract Report

Erin Howe, PhD

University of Notre Dame-Harper Cancer Research Institute

Presented in memory of Erin Remme by Minneapolis Metsquerade

Targeting endosomal trafficking to enhance immune recognition of breast cancer brain metastases

Abstract Report

Natasha Hunter, MD

University of Washington

Presented by Metavivor Facebook Fundraisers

Tissue and liquid biopsy for breast cancer patients with bone-only metastases

Abstract Report

Dennis Jones, PhD

Boston University

Presented by Metavivor Facebook Fundraisers

Targeting breast cancer plasticity and immunosuppression in metastatic lymph nodes

Abstract Report

Srinivas Malladi, PhD

UT Southwestern Medical Center

Presented in Honor of Abbey Rapoport

Targeting vulnerabilities of immune-evasive HER2+ Breast Adenocarcinoma Metastasis Initiating Cells

Abstract Report

Diwakar Pattabiraman, PhD

Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth

Presented in memory of Dee Dee Miller by Play: CLE to Cure: MBC

Differentiation therapy for metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Shreyas Rao, PhD

The University of Alabama

Presented by Metavivor Facebook Fundraisers

Engineered biomimetic hydrogels to probe metastatic tumor cell cluster–brain microenvironment interactions facilitating tumor progression

Abstract Report

Thu Truong, PhD

University of Minnesota, Masonic Cancer Center

Presented by MetaRaise DENJPA in Memory of Our Friend Patty Ann Baldwin

Progesterone receptor reprograms metabolic pathways to drive therapy resistant populations in metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Yun Zhao, PhD

University of Notre Dame

Presented by Metavivor Facebook Fundraisers

Targeting the pitfall of chemo-immunotherapy: Immunosuppressive myeloid cells induced by apoptosis

Abstract Report

Guizhi Zhu, PhD

Virginia Commonwealth University

Presented by Southwest Florida Metsquerade in Memory of Amanda DeFiebre

Multi-epitope/di-adjuvant co-delivering albumin-binding vaccines (Medico-AlbiVax) for the combination immunotherapy of metastati

Abstract Report

Stacy Blain, PhD

The Research Foundation of the State of New York, SUNY Downstate Medical Center

Presented by #LightUpMBC and Moore Fight Moore Strong in memory of Jessica Moore

p27Kip1: A game changing target in metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Fumito Ito, MD, PhD

Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center Health Research Inc

Presented by Southwest Florida Metsquerade in Memory of Karin Petrocelli

In situ radio-immunotherapy to maximize the engagement of cross-presenting dendritic cells to treat metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Bethany Kerr, PhD

Wake Forest School of Medicine

Presented in Honor of Beth Fairchild and Her Service to Metavivor Research and Support

Profiling combinatorial treatment response in early and late bone metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Traci Lyons, PhD

University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus

Presented by Northwest Arkansas Metsquerade In Memory of Erin Leland

Targeting therapeutic vulnerabilities of endocrine therapy resistant ER+ metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Steffi Oesterreich, PhD

University of Pittsburgh

Presented by Facebook Fundraisers

Targeting mesothelial – tumor cell interaction to treat invasive lobular cancer metastases

Abstract Report

Selvarangan Ponnazhagan, PhD

The University of Alabama at Birmingham

Presented by Metavivor Facebook Fundraisers

Co-targeting immunosuppression and skeletal pathology for metastatic breast cancer therapy

Abstract Report

Pranela Rameshwar, PhD

Rutgers New Jersey Medical School

Presented in honor of Tami Bowling and METAvivors of NJ

Preventing epigenetic-mediated DNA repair induced by bone marrow niche cells to eliminate drug resistance

Abstract Report

Brad St Croix, PhD

National Cancer Institute

Presented by Monica Hill’s Be Bold and Behold, In Loving Memory of Monica Hill and Jasmine Charles

Improving the therapeutic index of ADCs targeting metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Alana Welm, PhD

University of Utah

Presented by 2020 New York Fashion Week in Memory of Halli Lannan

FORESEE: Functional precision oncology for metastatic breast cancer: a feasibility trial

Abstract Report

Danny Welch, PhD

University of Kansas Medical Center Research Institute, Inc.

Presented by #Cancerland in Memory of Champagne Joy

BMRS1 MSD: A potential new inhibitor of breast cancer metastasis

Abstract Report

Stuart Martin, PhD

University of Maryland School of Medicine

Presented by the We "Neeta" Cure Fundraiser in Memory of Neta Meier

Targeting Tau-induced microtubule stabilization to reduce outgrowth of metastatic tumors

Abstract Report

2019

Nancy Lin, MD

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Overcoming Treatment Resistance in Breast Cancer Brain Metastases

Abstract Report

Bolin Liu, PhD

Department of Genetics Stanley S. Scott Cancer Center School of Medicine Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center

Presented in Memory of Cecilia “CeCe” Curry, METAvivor Board Member

IGF-2 in Herceptin refractory HER2-positive breast cancer

Abstract Report

Paul Lockman, PhD

West Virginia University

Timing of radiotherapy and chemotherapy to improve drug effect in brain metastases of breast cancer

Abstract Report

Deepali Sachdev, BSc, MSc, PhD

Regents University

Presented by 2019 NYFW + #Cancerland in memory of Champagne Joy

Development of natural killer cell based tri-specific killer engagers (TriKEs) as novel immunotherapy for metastatic breast canc

Abstract Report

Robert Weinberg, PhD

Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research

Mechanisms of Acquired Adaptation of Disseminated Breast Cancer Cells

Abstract Report

Fei Xing, PhD

Wake Forest University

Treating breast cancer brain metastasis with immune checkpoint inhibitor and c-Met targeting agent

Abstract Report

Massimo Cristofanilli, MD

Northwestern University

Presented In Memory of Karen Presswood, Co-Founder of METAvivor

Unravelling New Cytokine-Mediated Mechanisms to Enhance Response to CDK4/6 inhibition in ER+/HER2-Metastatic Breast Cancer

Abstract Report

Andrew Ewald, PhD

Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine

Presented In Memory of Avis Halberstadt, Co-Founder of Metavivor

Targeting the survival pathways required by established breast cancer metastases

Abstract Report

Carol Lange, PhD

University of Minnesota

Presented In Memory of Rhonda Rhodes, Co-Founder of Metavivor

Targeting Activated Progesterone Receptors in Metastatic Breast Cancer

Abstract Report

Prasanna Alluri, MD, PhD

UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas

Presented in honor of Erin Remme by Minneapolis Metsquerade

Identifying Therapeutic Vulnerabilities in RB1-negative, ER-positive Breast Cancers

Abstract Report

Lucia Borriello, PhD

Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Presented by 2019 New York Fashion Week

Targeting the Mechanism of Re-Dissemination and Metastasis in Stage IV Breast Cancer

Abstract Report

Joshua Drago, MD

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer

Presented by METAvivors of New Jersey

The intestinal microbiome and response to chemoimmunotherapy in patients with metastatic triple negative breast cancer (MTNBC)

Abstract Report

Mick Edmonds, PhD, MS

UAB School of Medicine

Presented In Memory of Kristin Todd

A novel strategy targeting SRC tyrosine kinase for breast cancer metastasis

Abstract Report

Colt Egelston, PhD

City of Hope

Presented In Memory of Angie Powell by Northwest Arkansas Metsquerade

Bispecific monoclonal antibodies for treatment of advanced breast cancer

Abstract Report

Jeremy Force, DO, MA

Duke University

Presented In Memory of Kristie Godwin Rolan by Triangle Metsquerade

Discovery and validation of putative oncogenic ROS1 alterations in breast cancer

Abstract Report

Jamie Fornetti, BA, PhD

Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah

Presented by Abbey Rapoport

Novel RON Inhibitors for the Treatment of Metastatic Breast Cancer

Abstract Report

Antonio Giordano, MD, PhD

Medical University of South Carolina

Presented In Honor of Michael Kovarik by 2019 New York Fashion Week

Phase 1 clinical trial of Polo-like kinase 1 inhibition with nab-paclitaxel in TP53 mutated metastatic triple negative breast ca

Abstract Report

Sheheryar Kabraji, BMBCh

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Presented by 2019 METAbash

Targeting drug-resistant quiescent cancer cells in breast cancer brain metastases

Abstract Report

Jungwoo Lee, PhD

University of Massachusetts Amherst

Tissue-engineered bone to determine the impact of chemotherapy-induced premature aging in breast tumor metastasis

Abstract Report

Michael Lukey, PhD

Cornell University

Presented by Minneapolis Metsquerade in honor of Erin Remme

Targeting the unique metabolic profile of brain metastases in breast cancer

Abstract Report

Ashley Makela, PhD

The Institute for Quantitative Health Science and Engineering, Michigan State University

Presented In Memory of Connie Cadwell by Miles4Metavivor

Understanding extracellular vesicle trafficking in established breast cancer metastases: In vivo tri-modal imaging provides long

Abstract Report

Madeline Oudin, BSc, MSc, PhD

Tufts University

Presented by METAribbon Challengers

Investigating how obesity-driven changes in the tumor microenvironment promote metastatic outgrowth and chemoresistance in metas

Abstract Report

Lijuan Sun, PhD

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Presented In Memory of Rebecca McNally Gilden - Blessed mother, wife, daughter, engineer, friend and breast cancer advocate

Reprogramming innate-adaptive immune interactions to eliminate metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Stuart Martin, PhD

University of Maryland School of Medicine

Presented In Memory of Wendy Taylor by Northwest Arkansas Metsquerade

Reducing the risk of chemotherapy-induced scattering of metastatic triple-negative breast tumors

Abstract Report

Danny Welch, PhD

University of Kansas Cancer Center

Presented In Memory of Valerie Wright by Northwest Arkansas Metsquerade

New inhibitors of breast cancer metastasis

Abstract Report

Andrei Bakin, PhD

Roswell Park Cancer Center

A Novel Combination Therapy to Improve Treatment of Metastatic Breast Cancer

Abstract Report

Sanchita Bhatnagar, PhD

University of Virginia School of Medicine

Targeting the mechanisms of oncogenic TRIM37 in metastatic triple negative breast cancer

Abstract Report

Rolf Brekken, PhD

UT Southwestern

Pleiotrophin as a driver of the immune metastatic niche

Abstract Report

Andrew Brenner, MD, PhD

Mays Cancer Center

Presented In Memory of Tarah Harvey by Minneapolis Metsquerade

Permeability of Sacituzumab Govitecan in Breast Cancer Brain Metastases

Abstract Report

Barbara Fingleton, PhD

Vanderbilt University

Presented In Memory of Destiny Rivera and Stephanie Sunday by Orlando Metsquerade

Tumor targeting of an immune super-activator in male and female metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Barry Hudson, PhD

University of Miami

Presented in memory of Amanda De Fiebre by Southwest Florida Metsquerade

Therapeutic targeting of RAGE in metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Yibin Kang, PhD

Princeton University

Presented by The Fraternal Order of Eagles

Preventing Regulatory T cell Induction to Enhance Immunity Against Breast Cancer Metastases

Abstract Report

Stephen Kron, MD, PhD

The University of Chicago

Mechanisms determining local and systemic anti-tumor immune response after metastasis-directed image-guided radiation combined w

Abstract Report

Sandra McAllister, PhD

Brigham and Women's Hospital; Harvard Medical School

Presented In Memory of Lauren Smoke by Chicago Metsquerade

A new approach to identifying effective therapeutic strategies that eliminate de novo and recurrent stage IV triple-negative bre

Abstract Report

Yusuke Shiozawa, MD, PhD

Wake Forest University

An osteolytic bone lesion-targeted radiopharmaceutical for bone metastatic breast cancer

Abstract Report

Zena Werb, PhD

University of California, San Francisco

Presented by METAvivor Facebook Fundraisers

Identification of Novel Cell Targets for Metastatic Breast Cancer Therapy

Abstract Report

Jing Yang, PhD

University of California, San Diego

Overcoming therapy resistance in TNBC metastases through targeted inhibition of Periostin

Abstract Report

Dihua Yu, PhD

The University of Texas

Presented In loving memory of Tiffany Foust and Kriss Fierro by Monica Hill's Be Bold and Behold

Impeding Breast Cancer Brain Metastasis by Blocking CCR2+ Myeloid Cell Infiltration

Abstract Report

View Past Grant Recipients