Newswise — Breast cancer treatments and public awareness have advanced in recent years; however, Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC) lags behind with no targeted treatments for patients and minimal recognition of its existence. With up to 20% of breast cancers classified as triple negative, the disease is widespread, yet few people have ever heard of it. Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day, 3.3.14 http://tnbcfoundation.org/tnbcday2014, will raise the level of conversation and actively push for advances in medical treatment and research, as promoted by the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation http://tnbcfoundation.org/ for the second year. The expanding national event is made up of grassroots awareness and fundraising events organized by supporters coast-to-coast who hope the year ahead brings advances.
Event hosts are passionate about educating family, friends and associates that TNBC is considered particularly aggressive and, while TNBC can strike anyone, it disproportionately impacts younger women in the prime of life — particularly those with the hereditary BRCA1 gene mutation and those of African and Latin descent. In addition to promoting critically needed education and awareness, the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation directs money raised from events to fund research initiatives and support programs for those undergoing treatment and their family members.
"Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day http://tnbcfoundation.org/tnbcday2014 is the only national event that spotlights the urgent need to develop targeted treatments and find a cure for triple negative breast cancer. Those most at-risk are all too often unaware. I've lost close friends to a cancer they once knew nothing about," said Hayley Dinerman, Executive Director of the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation http://tnbcfoundation.org. “The disease can be aggressive, so our TNBC Day goal needs to be equally aggressive — we’re hoping to triple our impact on March 3, 2014, with more people hosting events and securing larger donations.”
Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day in 2014 is on target to reach more people and raise more funds than last year’s inaugural event. Individuals in more than 30 states are hosting community and online events. Organizers are often TNBC survivors; celebrating their power to pursue active lives after treatment, while calling for the development of targeted treatments and an eventual cure. In several states, including Colorado, New Jersey and New Mexico, governors have officially proclaimed March 3, 2014 as Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day.
TNBC Day events include runs, walks, yoga classes, bike rides, donut sales, mani/pedi parties, educational sessions, happy hours, virtual tea parties and numerous online fundraisers. The first event registered in 2013 had a Lose the Lattes theme, where host Lori Redmer asked friends and family to skip their fancy coffee habit and donate that money to help fight TNBC. Redmer created TNBC Day and served as Executive Director of the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation; she passed away from metastatic TNBC in August, 2013. Today, Redmer’s family and friends are hosting multiple events to carry on her TNBC Day vision.
Leading up to Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day on 3.3.14, the 50-state map on the TNBC Day website registers new events daily. Some organizers, including co-host of The Stupid Cancer Radio Show, Annie Goodman of New York, are actively fighting the disease. Other event organizers have overcome TNBC and offer inspiration to those undergoing treatment, as well as their family members and friends. Some have set up events in support of family and friends or to honor the memory of loved ones.
"I became a Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day Champion to help women like myself find the support and resources they need to fight this disease. As a three-year triple negative breast cancer survivor, I know that sharing experiences and knowledge is an essential part of the journey, especially for under-served African American and Latina communities. Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day is a vital way for survivors, advocates and supporters to share hope, raise much-needed funds and make a difference in the fight against Triple Negative Breast Cancer," said Roxanne Martinez of Fort Worth, Texas.
"Education efforts will target both women who may be diagnosed with breast cancer as well as medical professionals who may be less familiar with TNBC and its risk factors. All need to be aware of the higher risk of TNBC among younger women (who are not necessarily undergoing mammographic screening) and among African American women. Also, patients diagnosed with TNBC should undergo genetic counseling to evaluate hereditary susceptibility regardless of whether they have a family history of breast cancer," said Dr. Lisa Newman, Director, Breast Care Center and Professor of Surgery, University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center.
For more information about The Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation and the Second Annual Triple Negative Breast Cancer Day 3.3.14 (Monday, March 3, 2014), please visit http://www.tnbcfoundation.org/tnbcday2014.
What is Triple Negative Breast Cancer?
It is now commonly understood that breast cancer is not one form of cancer, but many different "subtypes" of cancer. These subtypes of breast cancer are generally diagnosed based upon the presence, or lack of, three "receptors" known to fuel most breast cancers: estrogen receptors, progesterone receptors and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2). The most successful treatments for breast cancer target these receptors. Unfortunately, none of these receptors are found in women with triple negative breast cancer. TNBC can be acutely sensitive to chemotherapy, but it does not respond to the most effective treatment strategies in other subtypes of breast cancer. Better treatments are urgently needed.
About The Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation
The Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation was founded in 2006 in honor of Nancy Block-Zenna, who was diagnosed at the young age of 35 with triple negative breast cancer before succumbing to the disease in 2007. In response to Nancy’s diagnosis, her friends identified a dire need to create a central source of information for this dangerous and aggressive form of breast cancer, about which little was known just a short time ago. It is the Foundation’s mission to be a credible source for triple negative breast cancer information, a catalyst for science and patient advocacy groups, and a caring community with meaningful services for patients and their families. For more information about TNBCF, visit http://www.tnbcfoundation.org.