Fight against breast cancer scores $12m research boost

·2-min read

Researchers working to reduce the number of Australians dying from breast cancer have received a $12 million funding boost from the National Breast Cancer Foundation.

The organisation announced its investment on Thursday, with the money to go to 16 projects around the country.

The researchers are looking at the reasons young people get breast cancer, new personalised treatments for triple negative breast cancer, the effect of treatments on the immune system and new hormonal treatments.

About 3200 Australians die from breast cancer each year but the researchers could change that, National Breast Cancer Foundation chief executive Cleola Anderiesz said.

"We feel these research projects will help us get closer to our vision of zero deaths from breast cancer," Associate Professor Anderiesz told AAP.

"We absolutely hope in the future that a diagnosis of breast cancer doesn't affect the length or the quality of someone's life."

Donations from the public make up the $12m investment.

Among the recipients are researchers from the University of NSW, the Peter MacCullum Cancer Centre, the University of Queensland and the University of Adelaide.

Prof Anderiesz said the projects were chosen through a competitive national grant scheme, with funding awarded on merit.

More than 20,000 people are expected to be diagnosed with breast cancer in Australia this year, with the disease still the most common cancer in women.

Nine Australians are expected to die from breast cancer every day.

Since the National Breast Cancer Foundation was formed in 1994, the organisation has invested more than $200m into 600 research projects.

Death rates from breast cancer have improved by 43 per cent during that time frame.

"It's quite extraordinary," Prof Anderiesz said.

"It's thanks in part to the focus we had in improving research, making those significant discoveries and translating those discoveries into better practice and care for men and women."