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KCCure Announces New Research Grant For Chromophobe Renal Cell Carcinoma

November 19, 2021

KCCure is offering a grant totaling $50,000 for a project focused on innovative scientific research in chromophobe renal cell carcinoma (RCC). 

Chromophobe RCC is a rare subtype of kidney cancer accounting for roughly 5 percent of RCC tumors. When discovered early, this histological type is less likely to spread to other parts of the body. However, once the disease becomes metastatic, survival rates are poor.

Over the past decade, more than seventeen new treatments have been approved by the FDA to treat kidney cancer. However, all of these treatments have been established in clear cell RCC patients, the most common form of the disease. No treatments have been identified for chromophobe RCC. 

According to Dr. Kimryn Rathmell, chair of medicine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and physician-scientist studying rare tumors of the kidney, “The lack of therapeutic strategies for chromophobe RCC is a significant gap in the field. Funding efforts like this are desperately needed to drive research to find cures for these patients.” 

New kidney cancer funding resources offered through the federal government have dramatically increased opportunities for research. Despite this new funding source, the majority of research remains prioritized toward the most common type of kidney cancer. 

“I wake up each morning with the knowledge that I may never get to see my son grow up. I may never get to grow old with my husband,” said Catherine Yutmeyer, a metastatic chromophobe RCC patient and team leader for the grant effort. “Those fears drive me to do more, to make a difference – if not for myself, than at least for others who will face the same diagnosis in the future.”

Since 2017, KCCure has awarded grants to top institutions addressing critical unmet needs in kidney cancer detection and treatment. All grant awards go through a diligent peer review process to ensure funding goes to the best science. 

“This grant is significant for a number of reasons,” said Dena Battle, President of KCCure. “It’s the first grant ever dedicated just to research in chromophobe RCC. That is especially meaningful to patients with this rare subtype. Secondly, this is the first grant where the research priority was driven entirely by patients from a KCCure community. We hope this process will inspire others to unite and champion priorities that are meaningful to them.”

We would like to acknowledge the team of people who worked so hard to make this happen: Catherine Yutmeyer, Kayla Buckley, Katie Coleman, Melissa Helmick, Tracy Poyneer and Annamarya Scaccia.

The application period opens November 19, 2021 and closes on January 14, 2022. Awards will be announced March 1, 2022.  Full RFP is available here.

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