More Than Just a Colleague: An Inspiring Individual Fighting for Patients With Metastatic Breast Cancer

Metastatic Breast Cancer Heroes™, CURE® Metastatic Breast Cancer Heroes™ 2021 Essay Book, Volume 1,

A woman with breast cancer honors a colleague for her inspirational work to better the lives of patients with metastatic breast cancer, mentor others and inspire meaningful change.

It is a privilege to nominate my colleague at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Dr. Nancy U. Lin, for the Metastatic HeroesTM award. Nancy is an outstandingly talented medical oncologist and an amazing advocate for people living with metastatic breast cancer.

Nancy is not only a caring and compassionate care provider who goes the extra mile on behalf of her patients, but also a leading clinician scientist. Her research focuses on improving treatment for patients with advanced disease, especially those living with breast cancer brain metastasis.

Nancy has been the principal investigator on clinical trials leading to new treatments for breast cancer brain metastasis, has co-led a commission to advocate for the inclusion of patients with active breast cancer brain metastasis on clinical trials and is heavily involved in preclinical research projects to help us better understand why breast cancer travels to the brain.

She is an outstanding mentor to junior colleagues, demonstrating by example that tackling hard questions is critically important. Nancy has also built a program at Dana-Farber that supports patients living with metastatic disease by helping them access the types of psychosocial, integrative and educational resources that can improve the quality of their lives. Related to this study is a large cohort study of patients living with metastatic breast cancer that is providing clinically annotated data along with a rich biospecimen collection to investigators studying metastatic breast cancer.

Those of us who are fortunate to work with Nancy know that when she is approached about a project or program that can help patients, she is all about figuring out to how to make it work. Nancy’s efforts thus far have already led to meaningful improvements in treatment for patients.

As a patient with breast cancer, patient advocate and colleague of Nancy’s, I feel certain that her work, and the work of those she mentors and inspires, will continue to extend and improve life for patients living with metastatic breast cancer.

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