Gerstner Family Foundation Awards $10 Million to Broad Institute

The Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard has announced a $10 million gift from the Gerstner Family Foundation to expand cancer research efforts focused on overcoming drug resistance in tumor cells.

The grant will support a two-pronged approach to addressing cancer drug resistance: Broad Institute researchers will use genome-editing technology to identify the mechanisms that drive cancer drug resistance in tumor cells and, at the same time, will work with researchers at Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center and Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer to launch the largest study ever of pre-treatment and drug-resistant tumors. By comparing the genome sequence of pre-treatment tumors to resistant tumors, researchers hope to identify the mutations that cause resistance.

"Human cancers are constantly evolving in ways that evade even the best of our innovative new drugs," said Dana-Farber Cancer Institute president and CEO Edward J. Benz, Jr. "For patients to get the maximum benefit from these exciting agents, we need to devise ways to defeat this resistance."