Last week I promised to tell you about the members of the research teams I work with.

Many of you will know how lucky we are to have some of the best minds in cancer research working right here in B.C. The important BC Cancer Agency OvCaRe team is based in Vancouver, but with members across the entire province. Initially founded by Drs. Dianne Miller, David Huntsman and Blake Gilks, they had the vision to create a multidisciplinary team of researcher over a decade ago.

OvCaRe is now a major success and is highly regarded internationally. Our research members have lead the way in unraveling the complexity of ovarian cancers, and are likewise working to study other gynecologic cancers, such as endometrial cancer. Having the ability to walk down the hallway to speak to my research colleagues is a privilege few can enjoy, and creates amazing and sometimes entirely unexpected opportunities and collaborations.

I mentioned last week that I am also interested in the role of the immune system in controlling cancer. Once again, in B.C. we are very fortunate to have a team of researchers at the BC Cancer Agency Deeley Research Centre in Victoria, whose mission is "to understand how the immune system responds to cancer before, during and after standard treatments." I am currently working with colleagues at the Deeley Research Centre to develop strategies for enhancing the study of the immune system in patients with gynecologic cancers, with the goal of bringing more clinical trials of immune treatments to our patients.

The BC Cancer Foundation supports and promotes all of our work, from OvCaRe and the Deeley Research Centre to my work on the SMART Cancer Project. In many cases, the BC Cancer Foundation has provided initial "seed" funding that can be very hard to obtain otherwise. This funding allows ideas to grow, and hopefully will bring the change we all hope for: better treatments, longer lives, and cures, for our patients - this is my holiday wish. I invite you to watch this video and share your own wishes for the holidays. 

Yours,
Anna