The Hirshberg Foundation is pleased to announce a multi-researcher project will be funded for the 2020 Seed Grant. Expanding on current research underway at the Hirshberg Laboratory for Pancreatic Cancer Research at UCLA, this project will look at the influence of hereditary pancreatitis on pancreatic cancer development.
While there is no one cause for developing pancreatic cancer, it is known that environmental factors such as smoking and diet can increase one’s risk. Chronic pancreatitis, an inflammatory condition, is also a known risk factor. It is well established that Kras mutations play a necessary role in initiating pancreatic cancer and subsequent growth but the environmental risk factors that promote tumor development are far less understood. These risk factors offer a potential for interceptive strategies to prevent the development of pancreatic cancer.
Zsanett Jancso, PhD, will work with Dr. Guido Eibl, Director of the Hirshberg Laboratory on a project titled, Preclinical Model of Hereditary Pancreatitis-Promoted Pancreatic Cancer, thanks to 2020 Seed Grant funding. UCLA’s Translation Research Lab is focused on identifying and understanding the causes and risk factors of pancreatic cancer. Dr. Jancso’s research aims to investigate whether hereditary pancreatitis accelerates pancreatic cancer development and tumor growth. Through studying early-onset pancreatitis, they aim to gain a deeper understanding of how inflammation impacts and promotes tumor growth.
While our Seed Grant program has historically focused on early research projects, the need for collaborative research and partnership has become apparent. In order to make the strides we need to combat this disease, we must focus on projects that will bring science from the bench to the bedside. For our 2020 Seed Grant program, we are honored to be funding a first-of-its-kind, collaborative research grant. Dr. Jancso’s research will offer critical insight into how hereditary-pancreatitis associated pancreatic cancer develops and how chronic inflammation promotes tumor growth in the pancreas. The hope is that these findings will then be translatable into preventative strategies against pancreatic cancer.
Thanks to continued support throughout this difficult year, the Hirshberg Foundation has been able to maintain our promise to fund novel pancreatic cancer research. Despite the set-backs of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are unwavering in our quest towards a cure for this disease. Thank you for staying the course with us and making this research possible.