• Dana-Farber staff members in the lab
  • Dana-Farber doctor and patient in an exam room
  • Two Dana-Farber staff members at a computer
  • Young Dana-Farber patient in Red Sox gear at Fenway Park

The
Dana-Farber
Campaign

Dana-Farber is defying cancer thanks to the generosity of our philanthropic community. Your support is igniting crucial progress. In the last 5 years, more than half of all FDA-approved cancer drugs were developed with significant contributions from Dana-Farber investigators. Together, we can build on this momentum to prevent, treat, and Defy Cancer.

The Dana-Farber Campaign: Defy Cancer

The Dana-Farber Campaign: Defy Cancer

The Dana-Farber Campaign supports revolutionary science, extraordinary care, and exceptional expertise. Learn more about a few of the most challenging areas the Institute is tackling through stories of hope and inspiration about three key campaign priorities: Immunotherapy; Access to Care; and Prevention, Early Detection, and Interception. Hear from Dana-Farber President and CEO, Dr. Laurie H. Glimcher and others about how your support can help Defy Cancer.

The Dana-Farber Campaign supports revolutionary science, extraordinary care, and exceptional expertise. Learn more about a few of the most challenging areas the Institute is tackling through stories of hope and inspiration about three key campaign priorities: Immunotherapy; Access to Care; and Prevention, Early Detection, and Interception. Hear from Dana-Farber President and CEO, Dr. Laurie H. Glimcher and others about how your support can help Defy Cancer.

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Driving Change for Our Patients

Driving Change for Our Patients

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute has a strong legacy of innovation in cancer science and patient care. Learn more from Dana-Farber leaders who are building on this legacy to change the future of cancer medicine: Barrett J. Rollins, MD, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer, Emeritus; Toni Choueiri, MD, Director of the Lank Center for Genitourinary Oncology; Anne Gross, PhD, RN, Senior Vice President of Patient Care Services and Chief Nursing Officer; and Karen Burns White, Deputy Associate Director, Center for Cancer Equity and Community Engagement.

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Defyverb

de. fy | di-’fī defied; defying transitive verb to challenge; to do something considered impossible; to dare

75 Years of the Jimmy Fund

75 Years of the Jimmy Fund

2023 marks 75 years of progress and impact made possible by the Jimmy Fund. Since the original “Jimmy” inspired thousands of donations through a radio broadcast at his hospital bedside on May 22, 1948, the generosity of millions has helped the Jimmy Fund directly support Dana-Farber’s mission. Join us as we celebrate the power of 75 years of community through activities and events throughout the year—including CowParade New England. Together, we’re all Jimmy, and we can defy cancer.

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Trailblazer—Kimmie

Trailblazer—Kimmie

Colorectal cancer is one of the most prevalent and lethal cancers in the United States. The risk of developing this cancer increases with age. That’s why most cases occur in people over the age of 50. But, something has changed. There’s a new mystery to solve. My colleagues and I are seeing younger and younger patients who are developing colorectal cancer. At Dana-Farber, we have colorectal cancer patients in their 20s. Even more unusual is that as a group, they do not exhibit the typical risk-factors—they don’t have a family history of the disease. It’s not their genetics. They don’t...

Colorectal cancer is one of the most prevalent and lethal cancers in the United States. The risk of developing this cancer increases with age. That’s why most cases occur in people over the age of 50. But, something has changed. There’s a new mystery to solve.

My colleagues and I are seeing younger and younger patients who are developing colorectal cancer. At Dana-Farber, we have colorectal cancer patients in their 20s. Even more unusual is that as a group, they do not exhibit the typical risk-factors—they don’t have a family history of the disease. It’s not their genetics. They don’t have lifestyle risk-factors. They are not obese. It is predicted that the steep rise in this cancer happening in young people that we see now will continue over the next decade. At Dana-Farber, we are determined to stop that from happening.

The goal of our research is to find out if there is a unique molecular signature, gene-expression signature, or microbiome signature that would identify those most at risk.

That would help us unlock how to develop more effective prevention and treatment strategies. To do that, we are partnering with our young patients in this research. We are collaborating with cancer centers worldwide to enroll more young patients to get answers more quickly. We’ve already uncovered some clues.

Cancer is different within each person and it is always changing within each person. And now, cancer is also developing in different people for different reasons. That’s why at Dana-Farber, we are continually changing as well. Each day, we’re learning, evolving, and getting smarter. We are accelerating breakthroughs as we speed from the lab, to the bedside, back to the lab, and back to the bedside again. Our goal is to provide each patient with the right treatment at the right time in the right way. Because that’s how we will Defy Cancer.

— Kimmie Ng, MD, MPH
Director, Young-Onset Colorectal Cancer Center
Director of Translational Research, Gastrointestinal Cancer Center
Co-Director, Colon and Rectal Cancer Center
Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

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A Message from Our President and CEO

A Message from Our President and CEO

We know more about cancer than ever before. More treatments are coming out of our research every day and are being delivered with outstanding compassion in our clinics and around the world. We are relentlessly determined to take what we are learning, build on it, and defeat this disease. There is no time to waste. Patients everywhere are depending on us. We ask for your support. Please join us.

Together, we will Defy Cancer.

Laurie H. Glimcher, MD
President and CEO, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Richard and Susan Smith Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

A Message from Our Campaign Chair

A Message from Our Campaign Chair

We need to build on the incredible scientific revolution that is underway at Dana-Farber, a revolution that promises to fundamentally change the impact of cancer in our lifetimes. Now is the time, and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is the place to invest. Our community’s dedication to revolutionary science and extraordinary care is leading and changing the trajectory of treatment worldwide. I believe that, together, we will Defy Cancer. Please join us in this essential mission.

Michael R. Eisenson
Chair, The Dana-Farber Campaign
Trustee, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Founding Partner and Managing Director, Charlesbank Capital Partners

Our experts lead the development of new treatments and write the cancer care protocols used around the world.

1 in 1 in 3 women and 1 in 2 men will develop cancer in their lifetime. It has never been more important to Defy Cancer.
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Researcher—Bill

Researcher—Bill

Like most scientists, I like solving puzzles. And there has always been something puzzling to me about oxygen. Oxygen is the lifeblood of living organisms. And although we need it to survive, too much can be toxic. For years, my colleagues and I studied how cells sense and adapt to oxygen availability. This puzzle was complicated, like most basic research. But we kept at it, knowing it was only a matter of time before we broke through and learned enough to translate our discoveries to help patients. And we were right. Today, our findings have implications for treating a variety...

Like most scientists, I like solving puzzles. And there has always been something puzzling to me about oxygen. Oxygen is the lifeblood of living organisms. And although we need it to survive, too much can be toxic. For years, my colleagues and I studied how cells sense and adapt to oxygen availability. This puzzle was complicated, like most basic research. But we kept at it, knowing it was only a matter of time before we broke through and learned enough to translate our discoveries to help patients.

And we were right. Today, our findings have implications for treating a variety of diseases, including anemia, heart attacks, strokes—and cancer. When I won the Nobel Prize for that research, I was thrilled—thrilled that our efforts were now helping patients, thrilled for all of my mentors, trainees, and collaborators over the years who made the work possible, and thrilled to celebrate this moment with people who mean so much to me.

I also share this honor with my late wife, Carolyn.

Carolyn was a Dana-Farber faculty member and the founding director of the Comprehensive Breast Health Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Her patients loved her, because she was the type of doctor who would call her patients back after she put the children to bed—even if it was 10:00 pm.

Then, this leader in the treatment of breast cancer—was diagnosed with breast cancer. Through her treatment, Carolyn continued her research and advocacy for patients and spent time with our two children.

In 2010, Carolyn was diagnosed with glioblastoma, the deadliest of brain cancers, unrelated to her previous breast cancer. She passed away in 2015. She was a pioneer, my partner, my hero, my inspiration … and my best friend.

Her determination continues to inspire me. Because determination is what it takes to solve the hardest puzzles—ones we continue to tackle every day at Dana-Farber. Today, we are close to many breakthroughs in cancer treatment. They will happen. With persistence, vision, and the power of a diverse ecosystem of collaborators, we will get there. You can find all of that here at Dana-Farber, a place I’m happy to call home.

— William G. Kaelin Jr., MD
Nobel Laureate in Medicine, 2019
Researcher, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Sidney Farber Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

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We invite you to join us. At this historic inflection point, there is no time to waste. We ask for your support. We know that, together, we can accelerate success in the world-changing endeavor to prevent, treat, and Defy Cancer.

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