The following story originally appeared in the Oct. 25, 2018, edition of the VUMC Reporter.
An immunotherapy research initiative at Vanderbilt University Medical Center is among those being supported by the Mary Kay Foundation, which has announced $1.2 million in funding that will be equally shared among 12 cancer research institutions.
The $100,000 designated for VUMC will support research into using ultrasound as an image-guided therapy for drug delivery. Charles Caskey, Ph.D., assistant professor of Radiology and Radiological Sciences and Biomedical Engineering, leads the research as the principal investigator at the Laboratory of Acoustic Therapy and Imaging at the Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science.
“The Mary Kay Foundation grant underscores the importance of continuing to explore the promising field of cancer immunotherapy,” Caskey said. “Gaining better understanding of how focused ultrasound therapy supports immunotherapy could result in wider use of immunotherapy, including the treatment of breast cancers — many of which are currently less responsive to this approach.”
This is the fourth year that VUMC has received a cancer research grant from the foundation. Since 1996, it has awarded $28 million in grants to universities and medical centers around the country.