Xu lab receives funding and recognition for research on breast cancer

Dr. Wei Xu (front row, third from the right) with her fellow awardees at the AACR Grants Reception and Dinner on April 2, 2019. Photo by © AACR/Matt Herp 2019.

Wei Xu and her laboratory have been awash in a wave of recent successes, receiving multiple funding awards for their investigations into estrogen signaling and breast cancer.

Dr. Xu was recently received a catalyst award from the Dr. Ralph and Marian Falk Medical Research Trust to research potential therapeutic agents for treating endocrine-resistant breast cancers. Many breast cancers are estrogen dependent in their early stages, and hormone therapies that reduce estrogen levels or interfere with estrogen receptor signaling are an important tool for treating breast cancer. However, cancers cells can develop resistance to these therapies over time, necessitating the search for alternative treatment strategies.

The Falk catalyst awards are administered by the Medical Foundation at Health Resources in Action and are structured as one-year awards to support high-risk, high-reward research aimed at tackling major scientific challenges for outstanding investigators. This award will allow Dr. Xu and her laboratory to pursue cutting-edge research into novel and innovative therapies to address a significant and critical health challenge.

The vitality of Dr. Xu’s research into treatments for endocrine-resistant breast cancers was also recently recognized with a prestigious American Association for Cancer Research Bayer Innovation and Discovery Grant of $25,000. Her outstanding contributions were formally celebrated at the AACR Grants Reception and Dinner at the American Association for Cancer Research Annual Meeting.

In addition to this national recognition, Dr. Xu’s successes were also recently recognized by the University of Wisconsin-Madison, which named her a recipient of the Kellet Mid-Career Award. This award comes with $75,000 in research funding over five years and is designed to support faculty between seven- and 20-years post-tenure, during a crucial phase of their careers.