Spread the Word: Metastatic Breast Cancer Conference is Coming to Chicago on Oct. 13

Many of you know that I volunteer with the Metastatic Breast Cancer Network, (MBCN),  an all-volunteer, non-profit group that serves the 150,000 U.S.  people currently living with metastatic breast cancer. In 2006, the group held its first conference at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. The conference was a huge success with more than 300 attendees from 19 states and Canada. Subsequent conferences have been held at  M.D. Anderson, Dana-Farber, Indiana University’s Simon Cancer Center and at Johns Hopkins.  This year’s conference will be held in Chicago on Oct. 13 at at Northwestern University’s Lurie Center. Please help us spread the news!

If you have metastatic breast cancer, I hope to see you at this event. Caretakers and friends are welcome, too.  Some scholarships are available to help defray travel and hotel costs. (Here’s the registration link.) Please join us! You will be glad you did.

The goal of MBCN’s annual conference is to:

  • Help to ease the isolation of living with metastatic disease
  • Expose misconceptions about the disease –misconceptions held not only by some patients, family and friends but also by some doctors …doctors who give up on metastatic patients too soon
  • Fight for drugs to extend life as we search for the cure

Along with medical presentations, attendees will hear testimonials from people living with MBC.  We will share our struggles, triumphs and coping mechanisms. A Friday night pizza party at Chicago’s famous Gino’s East is a great chance to catch up with old friends and make new ones. Before I attended the 2009 conference in Indiana, I hadn’t met any MBC patients in person. It made a tremendous difference to actually see  I was not alone.

If there is anything I can help you with, leave me a comment! Please helps us publicize this very worthy event!


We have expert speakers from Northwestern,  University of Chicago, Rush University the National Cancer Institute and more. Agenda highlights include:

“Understanding MBC”

Virginia Kaklamani, MD  is an Associate Professor in Hematology/Oncology at Northwestern University. she completed her medical training with honors athe University of Athens and her residency in internal medicane at Newton-Wellesley Hospital in Boston. She received a Master of Science degree in clinical investigation from Northwestern in 2003 and joined the Northwestern faculty in that same year, following completion of her fellowship.Her clinical interests are breast cancer and cancer genetics.

“Emerging Research”

Steven Rosen, MD is the Genevieve Teuton Professor of Medicine and the Director of the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Care Ceter at Northwestern. He graduated from Northwestern Medical School in 1976 and completed his residency at Northwstern and fellowship in Medical Oncology at the National Canccer Institute. Dr. Rosen has received numerous awards and contracts and has published more than 200 scientific papers. He serves on several editorial boards and is editor of Cancer Treatment & Research. He is a member of all major national associations that focus on oncology and has held leadership positions in the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group, the American Association of Cancer Institutes and the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

“Research on Containing Metastatic Growth”

 Patricia Steeg, PhD received her PhD from the Univesity of Maryland in 1982 and was tenured in 1992 at the National Cancer Institute. She became chief of the Women’s Cancers Section in 1993. In 2004 she was appointed Director of the Moleccular Therapeutics Program, Center for Cancer Research at the NCI. Her research centers on identifying and containing metastatic growth.


“Acupuncture and Chinese Herbology”

Virginia  Burns, LAC is a licensed acupuncturist at Northwestern University.

“Targeted Treatment for Isolated Mets”

Steven Chmura, MD is Assistant Professor of Radiation and Cellular Oncology at the University of Chicago. An expert in radiotherapy ad stereotactic radiosurgery(SRS), Dr. Chmura uses minimally invasive techniques to minimize tissue damage when diagnosing and treating cancers. He is an active researcher and principal investigator for the Radiation Trials Oncology Group. He received all of his training from medical school through internship and residency at the University of Chicago.

“Improving Daily Functioning”

Gail Gamble, MD specializes in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Northwestern, where she is an Associate Professor. She graduated from the Mayo Medical School in 1979 and completed residency at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester.

“Treating Bone Metastases”

William Gradishar, MD is professor of medicine in division of hematology/oncology at Northwestern University. After recieiving his medical degree from the University of Illinois/Chicago, he completed residency at Michael Reese Hospital and Medical Center in Chicago and fellowship at the University of Chicago. Dr. Gradishar is hte Director of the Maggie Daley Center for Women’s Cancer Care at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. He has published extensively in the area of breast cancer therapy, with a focus on endocrine therapy, chemotherapy and novel targeted therapies. He is active in ASCO leadership, the Breast Cancer Treatment Guidline committee of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network and serves as a consultant to the Oncolgoy Drug Advisory Committee of the FDA.

“Living with MBC”  (Panel 1 for Those Under 40; Panel 2 for Those 40 and Older)

Roz Kleban is the administrator supervisor for psychosocial programs at the Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center where she oversees all social-work activities. With almost 25 years of experience working with oncology patients and their families, she leads weekly support groups for women dealing with early- as well as advanced-stage breast cancer and is a member of the professional advisory board of breastcancer.org.

“Brain Metastasis”

Lorenzo Munoz, MD is a neurosurgeon at Rush University Medical Center. He received his medical degree from the Ponce School of Medicine in Puerto Rico and completed internship and residency at University of Illinois. Dr. Munoz also completed fellowships in neurosurgical critcal care and pediatric neurosurgery.

“Triple Negative MBC”

Funmi Olopade, MD  is a Professor of Medicine and Human Genetics and Director of the Cancer Risk Clinic at the University of Chicago. She graduated from medical school at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria and completed internship and residency at Cook County Hospital and fellowship at the University of Chicago. Her current research interests include identifying the source of ER-negative breast cancer–an aggressive form of the disease, which is resistant to hormone therapy. Dr. Olopade has a special interest in women of African descent, who are at higher risk for the more aggressive breast cancer and more likely to be diagnosed at a younger age. She aims to develop new biomarkers and improve screening standards and early detection for moderate- and high-risk populations.

“Treating Pain and Neuropathy”Judy Paice, PhD, RN is Director of the Cancer Pain Program at Northwestern University and a Research Professor in the Hematology/Oncology Division. She received her RN from Rush Medical College in 1982 and her PhD from Unicversity of Illinois in 1992. Her interest are Pain Management, Palliative Care and Hospice.

“Hormone Positive MBC”

Dr. Ruta Rao is an Assistant Professor at Rush University Medical Center, where she completed her fellowship training. Prior to that, she attended University of Wisconsin Medical School and completed internship at University of Southern California and residency at University of Illinois.

“Role of the Caregiver”

 Sara K. Rosenbloom, PhD  earned her PhD from Northwestern in 2002.


Saturday October 13, 2012 from 8:00 AM to 5:30 PM EDT
Robert H. Lurie Medical Research Center
303 E. Superior Street
Chicago, IL 60611
Metastatic Breast Cancer Network
888-500-0370 (voice mail)
“I have been to so many conferences where the focus was primary breast cancers and the topic of being metastatic was almost non-existent,” said an attendee at the inaugural conference in 2006.  “What about us?  What do we do?  What new therapies can we look forward to that will help keep us, that might prolong our lives for a very long time?  How do I deal with this?  If we don’t get the attention that is deserved, how can we expect non- metastatic women and men to not fear us? Thank you for doing this.”
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2 thoughts on “Spread the Word: Metastatic Breast Cancer Conference is Coming to Chicago on Oct. 13

  1. MBCNbuzz says:

    Thanks, Katherine. I think it’s going to be one of our best conferences yet!

  2. Tweeting this for you….. And hi to Ginny……


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