Group 3B: HER2-low Breast Cancer; Biomarkers

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

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: Erin Howe, Ph.D.

Erin is a Research Assistant Professor at the University of Notre Dame in the Department of Biological Sciences and the Harper Cancer Research Institute. She completed her Ph.D. in Cancer Biology at the University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus, and her B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. She transitioned to cancer biology research following the sudden loss of her father to metastatic melanoma, and is deeply committed to fighting metastatic disease. She strongly believes that because scientific research is funded by individuals, through taxes or donations, that research should also be accessible to everyone. In her spare time she enjoys gardening, quilting, and playing with her two Australian Shepherds.