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Dr. Joanne Kotsopoulos, WCRI scientist, receives Champions of Genetics award

July 8, 2013

Dr. Joanne Kotsopoulos, a scientist with the Familial Breast Cancer Research Unit at the Women’s College Research Institute (WCRI) was recently awarded the Canadian Gene Cure Foundation’s $90,000 Champions of Genetics: Building the Next Generation Grant for research on the role of folate in breast cancer incidence among high-risk women.

The award honours the work of Canada’s established scientists and provides inspiration and financial support to bright young researchers in the early years of their careers.

Dr. Kotsopoulos’s research program focuses on trying to identify dietary and lifestyle factors that may influence the risk of breast or ovarian cancer among women with the BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation. She hopes to offer data to support the development of practical and safe prevention interventions, leading to a decrease in the number of breast cancer cases and deaths attributed to a BRCA mutation. This funding will allow Dr. Kotsopoulos to evaluate whether a nutrient folate, commonly recommended to pregnant women, may in fact increase risk in BRCA mutation carriers.

The grant was awarded by the Canadian Gene Cure Foundation (CGCF), in partnership with the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) through its Institute of Genetics.

Dr. Joanne Kotsopoulos, also an assistant professor at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health and Department of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Toronto, was nominated by Dr. Steven Narod, a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Breast Cancer at Women’s College Research Institute who nominated Kotsopoulos.

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