Thousands Give DNA To Further Crowdsourced Breast Cancer Research Project

Thousands of metastatic breast cancer patients nationwide have given researchers access to their tumors and DNA in the hopes it will lead to breakthrough treatments and therapies for one of the most deadly forms of cancer. As the groundbreaking study enters its second year, more than 2,900 women and men have signed on to participate in the Metastatic Breast Cancer Project (MBCproject) since it launched Oct. 20, 2015. Spearheaded by the Broad Institute of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard, the project aims to find possible new treatments for the disease by examining patient-submitted DNA and medical records. Thirty-eight patients from Connecticut have expressed interest in the project and 21 of them have taken the next step and signed consent forms granting researchers access to their medical files and DNA as of November, according to Corrie Painter, the cancer researcher directing the MBCproject.

Infant’s Death Leads To Discovery Of Mystery Family Illness By Yale Researchers

For more than 40 years, Erik Drewniak has been plagued by high fevers and chills and never knew why. Whenever he got a 104 or 105-degree fever that would linger for a day or two, he and his family always figured that was just “how he got sick.” He still was able to excel at school, play sports and live a normal life, but the fevers would strike intermittently. It wasn’t until late 2012 into early 2013, following the death of his newborn son, that Drewniak learned what has been causing his fevers. He has an extremely rare gene mutation that Yale School of Medicine researchers uncovered through DNA sequencing. “I’m definitely grateful,” said Drewniak, 45 of Fairfield.