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Metastatic Breast Cancer Network Chooses Johns Hopkins Researcher for Leadership Award - 04/13/2015

Metastatic Breast Cancer Network Chooses Johns Hopkins Researcher for Leadership Award

Release Date: April 13, 2015
Dr. Ewald shakes hands with representatives of the MBCN
Andrew Ewald (second from right) is congratulated by representatives of the MBCN.
Maureen Martin, Johns Hopkins Medicine

On April 1, the Metastatic Breast Cancer Network presented one of its two 2015 Metastatic Breast Cancer Research Leadership Awards to Andrew Ewald, Ph.D., associate professor of cell biology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. The $50,000 award recognizes Ewald’s accomplishments in understanding the basic mechanisms of metastasis and will support his research.

The network is an all-volunteer, patient-led organization that advocates for more metastatic breast cancer research to improve outcomes for patients with metastatic breast cancer, an incurable disease that kills 108 Americans every day. Breast cancer remains the second leading cause of cancer death for women in the U.S. and the leading cause of cancer death for women globally.

“We are pleased to present leadership awards to two individuals whose work contributes significantly to understanding basic knowledge about the process of metastasis and to improving how patients are treated,” says Shirley Mertz, president of the network. The other award went to Matthew Ellis, M.B. B.Chir., Ph.D., the director of the Lester and Sue Smith Breast Center at Baylor College of Medicine.

Ewald is a cell and cancer biologist who studies the biology of metastasis. His laboratory, made up of basic science and medical trainees working in collaboration with engineers and clinicians, pioneered the development and use of 3-D culture techniques to capture and analyze the real-time growth and invasion of breast cancer tumor cells.

By better understanding how cancer cells make connections to other nearby cells, travel through local tissue and the bloodstream, and then establish themselves as a new tumor in the bone, lung, liver or brain, Ewald hopes to uncover new strategies to prevent cancer cells from metastasizing, ultimately improving patient outcomes.