Saint Francis Comprehensive Women’s Health Center Breast Health Outreach Program.  The purpose of the program is to reduce late-stage breast cancer diagnoses and increase breast cancer survival rates among the medically underserved women in Saint Francis’ service area.  The program educates these women about the importance of regular breast self-exams and mammograms in convenient community settings and connects them with screening, diagnostic and related services at Saint Francis’ Comprehensive Women’s Health Centers Comprehensive Breast Health Center.

Linda Hodgkins, MS OTR/L CLT-LANA Lymphedema Clinical Program Manager
Hartford HealthCare Rehabilitation Network/The Hospital of Central CT
Rehabilitation For Breast Health
The program provides education and access to therapy and compression garments for uninsured, underinsured and high-deductible health insurance breast cancer survivors with lymphedema through the Rehabilitation for Breast Health Program.  Lymphedema is a chronic and progressive swelling disease that requires daily use of compression garments that are often not covered by insurance.

Kevin Claffey, PhD, Center for Vascular Biology and NEAG Cancer Center
University of Connecticut Health Center
Novel Therapeutic Targeting of Metastatic Breast Cancer

Current cancer therapies are largely ineffective for established metastatic breast cancers.  Chemotherapies my suppress tumor growth for a time but they fail to result in cancer regression.  In preliminary studies, we have discovered that one of the major barriers to effective treatment of metastatic disease may be the failure of tumor blood vessels to initiate immune cell infiltration into the tumor preventing tumor cell killing.  This project will test whether activating the blood vessels within metastatic lesions followed by immunotherapy treatments will overcome immune resistance in the tumors and result in tumor regression.  This would lead to improved quality of life, increased life expectancies or even permanent resolution in patients with metastatic disease.