Group 1B: Epigenetics, Tumor Heterogeneity

Thursday, Sept 15
10:00 am – 11:30 am Eastern Time (US/New York)

Poster #1: 

The Intra-Tumoral Heterogeneity Mediated by DNA Methyltransferase 3b and Therapeutic Targeting in Breast Cancer Recurrence and Metastasis

Poster #2:

Elucidating Functional Heterogeneity in Breast Cancer Cells

Mentor: Debbie Denardi

Debbie has been screened for breast cancer every 6 months since she was 27 years old due to her family history of breast cancer. Her mother and 3 of her sisters died after a breast cancer diagnosis in the ‘70s. They were all very young (40-45 years old). This family history was reported to every doctor she visited, but no doctor or nurse advised her to get tested for hereditary cancer. Finally, in 2010 when she was 48 years old and after 4 months of a clean mammogram and ultrasound, she was diagnosed with TNBC and a BRCA1 mutation.

Since her diagnosis and lack of education about hereditary cancers, she has been learning as much as she can to educate individuals and families about hereditary cancer. She started her volunteer work with FORCE (Facing Hereditary Cancer Empowered) and has served as a peer support leader in S. Florida since 2012. She also serves as the Treasurer for FORCE’s Board. During the first few years of her advocacy, she attended conferences and continued her local support. In 2018, she had the opportunity to start a new phase of her career and education in advocacy.

Twitter: @debsetu

Scientist: Julia Foldi, M.D., Ph.D.

Julia trained as a researcher in immunology prior to switching careers slightly to become a physician. She completed her Oncology training at Yale University, where she first interacted with patient advocates while developing her first clinical trial protocol. Julia recently moved to the University of Pittsburgh to begin her first faculty position as a Breast Medical Oncologist. In her new role as a clinical and translational breast cancer researcher, she is hoping to continue developing her relationships with local and national patient advocacy organizations and help connect other physician and scientists with patient advocates. She hopes to use these connections in her practice and research to develop patient-centered clinical studies and to ensure equitable access to evidence-based and state-of-the-art care as well as the ability to participate in research for all patients affected by breast cancer and other malignancies.

Twitter: @JuliaFoldiMD