The Benderson family of Sarasota, Florida, donated $5 million to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, MA, representing the largest philanthropic gift addressing triple-negative breast cancer research (TNBC) and care in the history of the research center. Actually the second major gift from the family to Dana-Farber in support of TNBC, the Benderson Family Program for Triple-Negative Breast Cancer is established.
The Challenge & Opportunity
Triple-negative breast cancer is one of the most challenging forms of breast cancer to treat. Chemotherapy remains the backbone of treatment, but with the ongoing clinical trials at Dana-Farber, new therapies such as immunotherapies, antibody drug conjugates, and PARP inhibitors are now under investigation.
TNBC represents challenges as other cancers for example are hormone receptor or HER2 positive, this condition has no targeted treatments hence patents must rely primarily on surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, which are less effective than targeted treatments and often bring significant side effects.
Now thanks to the Benderson gift, Dana-Farber will expand a novel comprehensive TNBC research registry while establishing a new endowed fund, the Benderson Family Endowment for Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Research. Dr. Eric Winer, chief of the division of breast oncology in the Susan F. Smith Center for Women’s Cancers, as well as senior vice president for medical affairs and faculty advancement, and Thompson Chair in Breast Cancer Research, will oversee the program.
With the generous gift in place, Dr. Laurie Glimcher, Dana-Farber President and CEO, declared Dr. Winer and Dana-Farber can “continue to lead the way in TNBC research and patient care.” She also emphasized that this award enables Dana-Farber to fund other programs that can help make a difference for these patients.
Care at Dana-Farber
Randy Benderson emphasized the high quality “amazing care received at Dana-Farber” as the Boston center cared for his wife, Lori Benderson. Benderson declared, “We truly hope that our gift will accelerate triple-negative breast cancer research and bring better treatments to other women sooner. We are confident that Dana-Farber will lead the way to a cure for this relentless disease.”
Thanks to the Benderson Family
Thanks to the Benderson family, who through hard work and perseverance have been able to operate University Park-based Benderson Development Co., a privately held real estate company that owns several hundred properties. $5 million is a lot for any individual or family unit to give and in this area of great need it demonstrates a true connection to the common humanity in us all that seek a healthy, high quality life.
Dr. Eric Winer, chief of the division of breast oncology in the Susan F. Smith Center for Women’s Cancers, as well as senior vice president for medical affairs and faculty advancement, and Thompson Chair in Breast Cancer Research