Session Synopsis: Advancing precision medicine is ultimately about ensuring patients get state of the art care for their personal health situation, and too few patients receive that now. Obstacles are reimbursement issues and awareness; not just among physicians, but also patients and family members. Patients can be allies of industry and researchers to overcome these obstacles and patient-activists are already at work on this. Learn about the Precision medicine for Me initiative bringing together numerous patient groups and industry leaders to accelerate positive change and save and extend the lives of people living with complex illnesses.
Session Chair Profile
Chief Operating Officer & Senior Vice President of Communications, Charlotte Center City Partners
Moira Quinn is a Charlotte television personality, businesswoman, and cancer patient advocate. Moira is also very active in community affairs, earning the distinction as one of Mecklenburg’s 50 Most Influential Women, Media Professional of the Year, and a community service award winner. Moira was diagnosed with stage II with triple-negative breast cancer in 2012. Genetic testing indicated she was negative for the BRCA gene, and she underwent a lumpectomy plus chemo and radiation in 2012, being burned “to a total crisp” as she puts it. Moira found strength and solace in her work, missing only 15 days in the space of a year from her various commitments. As a survivor now, Moira focuses her energy as Committee Chair of the “Cure by Design” event for the ACS and is on the Survivor Advisory Committee for Susan G. Komen as well as the Advisory Board of Carolina Breast Friends. Further, she has helped found and organize the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Support Group, celebrating 100 members strong.
Chief Patient Officer at Antidote in London and New York
As the Chief Patient Officer at Antidote in London and New York, Sarah has one of the best jobs in the world, helping patients all around the world get access to promising new treatments through clinical trials. Recent highlights include collaborating with the Cancer Moonshot Team at the White House. Sarah is also co-leading a unique grassroots collaboration called Precision Medicine for Me, aimed at making sure that every cancer patient gets the right tests and the best available treatment or trial.
M.D., Professor of Medicine, Assistant Prof. of Radiation Oncology, Duke Cancer Institute
Since 2010, Dr. Blackwell has served as the director of the Breast Cancer Program in the Duke Cancer Institute, overseeing all basic and translational research programs involving breast cancer patients. Blackwell serves on the national Scientific Advisory Board of the Susan G. Komen Foundation. One of the nation’s leading breast cancer researchers, Blackwell has played a major role in developing therapies that represent revolutionary non-chemotherapy based approaches for treating breast cancer. Her work on promising new therapies that selectively target breast tumor cells led to her inclusion on TIME magazine’s 2013 list of the 100 most influential people in the world. Blackwell has authored or co-authored more than 70 articles or book chapters. She has clinical and research interests in breast cancer angiogenesis, breast cancer in younger women, endocrine therapy, and targeted therapy for breast cancer and has served as the principal investigator or co-principal investigator of more than 50 clinical trials. Among her honors, Blackwell is a recipient of the Young Investigator Award in breast cancer from the Duke University Specialized Program of Research Excellence; the Duke Cancer Center Malek Family Award for outstanding cancer investigation; and the Joseph Greenfield Award for Mentorship of Clinical Research. In 2015 she was recognized as a distinguished Caskey Lecturer by the University of South Carolina, and was awarded the Distinguished Alumni award by Duke University. Blackwell received her undergraduate degree in bioethics at Duke University and her medical degree at Mayo Clinic Medical School. She completed an internal medicine internship and residency and a hematology-oncology fellowship at Duke University Medical School, where she joined the faculty in 2000.
Stage IV Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Patient, Legal Technician, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Nicole Russell is a 37-year-old Mother and Wife. She was diagnosed with Stage IV Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer in February 2016. She was diagnosed with an 8cm by 3cm lung tumor, mets to the pelvis, spine and brain. She tested positive for the EGFR genetic mutation and was prescribed Erlotinib, a targeted therapy in March 2016. By May 2016, her brain mets were gone, her bone mets were healing and her lung tumor was shrinking. She has since remained on this targeted therapy for 14 months, with no lung tumor visible and all other mets healing or gone. She has worked full time since started the Targeted therapy and maintains a new normal of lifestyle at home with her family. She likes to connect with other Lung Cancer Survivors to ensure they are getting the right testing done at diagnosis, being aware of all their options and just being there for any support that is needed. Nicole is a fighter who realizes what went wrong during her initial diagnosis and hopes to ensure that others that are going through the same situations have a more informed experience.