Group 3A: Triple Negative Breast Cancer; QOL & Survivorship



Wednesday, Dec 14 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm Eastern Time (US/New York)



Poster #HER2-10

Dynamics of HER2-low expression in triple-negative breast cancer

Poster #P6-05-29:

Experience of financial toxicity and distress among individuals diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer: Findings from the cancer experience registry

Poster authors Kara Doughtie & Melissa Miller, Ph.D. will attend this session

Mentor: Marlena Murphy

In 2018, Marlena Murphy was diagnosed with stage III triple-negative breast cancer. In 2019, as a patient advocate, she attended the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. After that, Marlena attended virtual GRASP sessions in 2020 and 2021 as a patient advocate. As a result of being a GRASP participant, in 2021 Marlena submitted feedback for an article on GRASP for Cancer Therapy Advisor, an online news source. She also received a recommendation and offer to serve as a volunteer on the Emory Winship Cancer Institute Patient and Family Advisory (PFA) Council. Because of Marlena’s commitment to advocacy and seeking knowledge beyond the realm of breast cancer, she was offered a position as a program manager with GRASP in 2021. Now, she serves as an enthusiastic team member, bringing together cancer researchers and advocates to exchange ideas and learn from each other. She continues to provide constructive feedback to cancer researchers from a patient’s perspective. She also works as a Community Advocate for Turning Point Breast Cancer Rehabilitation. Marlena’s role as a patient advocate was one she did not plan on during her lifetime, yet, she accepted it and decided that her diagnosis would not be in vain. Marlena is a mother to a teenage daughter and enjoys helping others. As a result of her diagnosis and desire to help people, Marlena entered grad school in 2020 to become a Clinical Mental Health Counselor. Marlena plans to use the degree to provide pro bono therapy for breast cancer patients and survivors.

Twitter: @MarlenaDM

Scientist: Julia Falco, Ph.D. Candidate

Julia holds a Bachelor’s degree in Science from Loyola University New Orleans and is currently finishing up her Ph.D. in Chemical Biology at Boston College. In her Ph.D. work, she uses chemical proteomics to investigate cysteine post-translational modifications and understand their role in regulating protein activity in vivo. Outside of the lab, Julia has a particular interest in learning about breast cancer biology and treatments and hopes to pursue this in her future career. At 26 she was diagnosed with stage 2 triple negative breast cancer and was found to have a BRCA1 mutation. During her own cancer treatments, her mom was also diagnosed with breast cancer and her two sisters with a BRCA1 mutation. She is an advocate within the breast cancer community and is passionate about sharing educational breast cancer content on her blog, Breast Cancer Blessings. In her free time you can find her doing yoga, walking in nature, or cuddling with her dog, Newt!