The San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS) and the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), an SABCS cosponsor, honored two researchers for their significant contributions to breast cancer research at the 2022 SABCS.
2022 AACR Distinguished Lectureship in Breast Cancer Research
Charles M. Perou, PhD, is the recipient of the 2022 AACR Distinguished Lectureship in Breast Cancer Research. This award was established to recognize outstanding science that has inspired, or has the potential to inspire, new perspectives on the etiology, diagnosis, treatment, or prevention of breast cancer.
Charles M. Perou, PhD
Dr. Perou is Professor in the Department of Genetics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is also Co-Director of the Computational Medicine Program, Faculty Director of the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center (LCCC) Bioinformatics Group, and Co-Director of the LCCC Breast Cancer Research Program.
Dr. Perou is being recognized for his seminal contributions to the understanding of breast cancer biology and treatment and his pioneering research in cancer genomics. Using RNA expression profiling, he reclassified breast tumors into five biologically distinct subtypes. He established the prognostic applicability of these findings with the development of the 50-gene Prediction Analysis of Microarray (PAM50) assay, which is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to predict metastasis in a subset of patients with breast cancer. He successfully identified the association of the PAM50 basal-like breast cancer subtype with triple-negative breast cancer and germline BRCA1 mutation–associated cancers.
2022 AACR Outstanding Investigator Award for Breast Cancer Research
Adetunji T. Toriola, MD, PhD, MPH, is the recipient of the 2022 AACR Outstanding Investigator Award for Breast Cancer Research. This award was established to honor an investigator whose novel and significant work has had, or may have, a far-reaching impact on the etiology, detection, diagnosis, treatment, or prevention of breast cancer. Such work may involve any discipline across the continuum of biomedical research, including basic, translational, clinical, and epidemiologic studies.
Adetunji T. Toriola, MD, PhD, MPH
Dr. Toriola is Professor of Surgery in the Division of Public Health Sciences at Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis. He is also Co-Leader of the Cancer Prevention Control Program and the William H. Danforth Washington University Physician Scholar at the Siteman Cancer Center. He was honored for his research dedicated to identifying molecular determinants of mammographic density and breast cancer risk that can be targeted in breast cancer prevention, especially in premenopausal women.
Dr. Toriola was the first to report a positive association between the receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-B (RANK) pathway gene expression and mammographic breast density in premenopausal women and demonstrated the potential utility of targeting the RANK pathway for primary breast cancer prevention in this patient population. He demonstrated that plasma levels of RANK pathway proteins could be used as biomarkers of mammographic breast density in premenopausal women and that RANK ligand (RANKL) signaling is associated with mammographic breast density among such women with elevated progesterone levels. These findings helped to identify a subset of women who may likely benefit from RANKL inhibition to help prevent breast cancer.