Head of the Centre for Clinical Diagnostic Genomics and the Medical Director of the Cancer Genetics Lab, BC Cancer Agency

We are in the first year of this two-year project currently; and as you can imagine, a study of this scale is costly. Thankfully, the BC Cancer Foundation is a major partner in this research. Their recent Inspiration Gala raised over $1.5 million for the Personalized Medicine Project (PMP), and it is this kind of donor generosity that will enable us to complete the project. We can also move to the next phase of cutting-edge clinical diagnostics to help stratify patients with all kinds of cancers towards the best therapies for each individual—that is, to receive a treatment plan based on his or her own tumour’s unique genomic profile.

We have learned from other recent studies that cancer patients cannot be treated as one homogenous group, as such, understanding each patient’s cancer will enable us to more effectively treat them. This also means that any given cancer can be targeted more effectively. It also may result in patients experiencing fewer and less severe side effects, shorter treatment times, a greater chance at a full recovery—ultimately, an increased chance at long-term survival.

Philanthropic support is vital to realizing the promise of personalized medicine and tailoring treatments specifically to a patient’s tumour. I believe this project is truly valuable to support, especially as there are very few places in the world where the confluence of genomics, diagnostic and clinical excellence is available to deliver such a program

It is exciting for me to be at the forefront of this kind of research here in B.C.

Thank you for reading,

Aly