FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Megan Snowdowne
Marketing & Communications Manager
Lung Cancer Initiative of North Carolina
(919) 784-0410 ext. 102
Inaugural Vicky Amidon Innovation in Lung Cancer Research Award Studies the Potential of Breath for Earlier Lung Cancer Detection
January 17, 2019 (NORTH CAROLINA) - The Lung Cancer Initiative of North Carolina, the state’s leading non-profit organization supporting lung cancer research and education, is pleased to announce Andrew Bishop, PhD, Wake Forest School of Medicine, part of Wake Forest Baptist Health, as the first recipient of the Vicky Amidon Innovation in Lung Cancer Research Award in the amount of $25,000. Dr. Bishop’s project will evaluate the potential to develop a lung cancer screening breath test to be used by clinicians for non-invasive lung cancer screening.
Lung cancer is a complex disease that currently requires invasive diagnostic tests. “Detecting lung cancer signatures in exhaled breath would greatly impact a clinician’s ability to detect cancer earlier and with minimally invasive tests, thereby impacting patient treatment and outcomes,” Dr. Bishop said.
Through the project, the research team will use the latest technologies to collect and identify the breath composition of patients, with the ultimate goal of developing a lung cancer breath test that can be utilized by clinicians for easier, non-invasive cancer screening. The study will focus on patients with a positive lung cancer diagnosis so that exhaled breath is collected when the cancer is present. A subsequent sample of exhaled breath will be taken after surgical cancer removal. Using this approach, the team seeks to identify potentially novel signals that can identify the presence of lung cancer, without a significant risk to the patient’s health.
“We are well aware that anyone with lungs can get lung cancer,” said Jennifer Garst, MD, Board Chair, Lung Cancer Initiative. “The potential for a non-invasive test for any type of lung cancer would have a significant impact on so many patients.”
The inaugural Vicky Amidon Innovation in Lung Cancer Research Award is named in the memory of Vicky Amidon, a beloved wife, mother and friend to many. At the age of 44, Vicky was diagnosed with lung cancer and faced a difficult two-and-a-half year battle with the disease. Vicky’s memory continues to impact many lives and is furthered through her family’s advocacy and support for the advancement of lung cancer research and awareness. The award recognizes and supports researchers who are developing innovative lung cancer projects that will improve the lives of those at risk of or living with lung cancer.
In the United States, lung cancer claims more lives than any other cancer and more than breast, colorectal and prostate cancers combined. According to the American Cancer Society, in North Carolina, 8,010 people are anticipated to be diagnosed with lung cancer and more than 5,370 are expected to lose their lives in 2019. Lung cancer screening through a low-dose CT scan is currently available to those who have a higher risk for lung cancer and who meet certain criteria. Patients should talk with their physician to learn more about this screening.
About Lung Cancer Initiative of North Carolina
As the state’s leading non-profit organization supporting lung cancer research and education, the Lung Cancer Initiative of North Carolina specializes in connecting patients, survivors and loved ones with the medical and research community. The organization’s mission is to save lives and provide support to those affected by lung cancer through research, awareness, education and access programs across North Carolina. For more information, please visit www.LungCancerInitiativeNC.org.