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EU Funds Breast Cancer Profiling Consortium

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – A consortium of researchers in Europe have received a grant of nearly €6 million ($8.4 million) from the EU to fund studies of two breast cancer types that are difficult to treat and amount to one quarter of all breast cancer cases: invasive lobular carcinoma and triple-negative breast cancer.

The group, which includes scientists at universities and businesses in Ireland, Spain, France, the Netherlands, Sweden, and the UK, aims to profile tumors in search of genetic mutations or other anomalous molecular processes involving kinases in these two cancer types, the EU said late last week.

Known as the RATHER consortium (Rational Therapy for Breast Cancer: Individualized Treatment for Difficult-to-Treat Breast Cancer Subtypes), the partners in the five-year project expect that these profiling studies will result in differences that are at the root of these cancers and could be targeted by novel drugs.

The RATHER partners include: University College Dublin; Agendia; Oncomark; the Netherlands Cancer Institute; the University of Cambridge; the Curie Institute; Vall d'Hebron Institute of Technology; and Lund University.

The consortium also plans to harmonize their methodologies to make comparisons between findings from each organization, and to do this the partners have started a project database that will be made available to the public.

The partners also are working in collaboration with the European Bioinformatics Institute through shared participation in an effort called the EUROCANPLATFORM, which is funded with €12 million from the EU and will create a resource for use by the European scientific community.

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