Donna Boehm, Nurse Navigator

The Hospital of Central Connecticut

Nutrition and Fitness Program for Breast Cancer Survivors

Awarded $25,000

About the Project: Donna Boehm and The Hospital of Central Connecticut will host an interactive Nutrition and Fitness Educational Series for breast cancer survivors. This will include a supervised nutrition and exercise program, yoga program and workshops featuring education on nutrition and physical activity benefits for breast cancer survivors. They will also provide survivorship education materials to patients completing treatments and provide community outreach at health fairs.

Susan Tannenbaum, MD and Mansai Shah, MD

University of Connecticut Health Center

The Impact of HER2 Status on the Outcome of Patients with Small Breast Cancers

Awarded $12,000

About the Project: Dr. Tannenbaum and Dr. Shah are hoping to make an impact on patient survival rates by determining how the biology of each specific type of breast cancer affects the outcome on a patient. They will use a database which is already in use at UCONN Health Center to record data on all patients diagnosed with small breast cancers and study their outcomes based on HER2 status. HER2 is a growth factor in breast cancer tumors.

Kevin Claffey, MD

University of Connecticut Health Center

Regional Breast Tumor and Sentinel Node Procurement for Advanced Molecular Diagnostic and Therapeutic Research

Awarded $38,000

About the Project: The disproportionate number of African American women with Triple Negative Breast Cancer suggests a need to include more minority patients in molecular research studies, specifically in studies on how to treat this cancer. This project will collect samples and other information from patients with Triple Negative Breast Cancer with the ultimate goal of finding a treatment.

Helen Swede, PhD

University of Connecticut Health Center

Triple Negative Breast Cancer and Survival Disparity

Awarded $50,000

About the Project: A continuing public health concern in both Connecticut and the rest of the country is that while African American women have a lower rate of breast cancer compared to white women, they are far more likely to die from the disease. This has started more research on Triple Negative Breast Cancer since it has been found in about 30% of tumors in African American Women and less than 10% of tumors in white women. There is evidence which suggests that Triple Negative Breast Cancer has the worst prognosis but it is unclear whether this is because it is more aggressive or because there are no targeted therapies. Dr. Swede will conduct a survival analysis study on patients diagnosed with Triple Negative Breast Cancer which takes into account socioeconomic status, chemotherapy received and other concurrent medical conditions. This will be the largest study of Triple Negative Breast Cancer in the United States to date.