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American Lung Association Announces New Investments in Lung Disease Research

Research Awards Nationwide 2016-2017 includes research conducted in Utah

(October 19, 2016) -

For more information please contact:

Heather Mangan
[email protected]

The American Lung Association recently unveiled its Research Awards Nationwide 2016-2017 report that highlights the novel and innovative research projects supported by the organization, including projects conducted in Utah. The goal of these research awards is to discover effective prevention and treatment strategies as well as cures for lung diseases, such as asthma, lung cancer, pulmonary fibrosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and more.

Through its Airways Clinical Research Centers (ACRC) and Awards and Grants Program, the American Lung Association funds high quality research and will be funding more than $6.5 million in 2016-2017. The program supports laboratory and patient-centered research and is an essential cornerstone of the Lung Association’s mission to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease.

“In Utah we see first-hand the toll lung diseases, such as asthma, lung cancer and COPD, can have on families and loved ones,” said Bill Pfeifer, President and Chief Executive Officer for the American Lung Association Southwest. “Scientific research is key to reducing the burden of these lung diseases and saving more lives. The American Lung Association is extremely proud to fund promising research efforts in Utah that will offer needed support to those in our community suffering from lung disease.”

Over the next 12 months, the American Lung Association is supporting the following local lung disease research project through its Awards and Grants Program in Utah:
•    Michelle Mendoza, PhD, University of Utah/Huntsman Cancer Institute
o    Ras/ERk Signaling Mechanisms Driving Lung Cancer Invasion

Medical advances made possible by the research contributions of the Lung Association have advanced treatment options, improved quality of life and patient care for a variety of lung diseases.

“I am deciphering the protein signals that control cell movement,” said Dr. Mendoza. “With funding from the American Lung Association, I will study how common lung cancer mutations alter the signaling programs to induce cancer cell invasion, the most significant cause of lung cancer morbidity and mortality.”

In addition to the Awards and Grants program, the ACRC network is the nation's largest not-for-profit network of clinical research centers dedicated to asthma and COPD treatment research. The network consists of a data coordinating center managed by a team at Johns Hopkins University, along with 17 clinical research centers nationwide.

The Research Awards Nationwide 2016-2017 report is interactive and available online at For media interested in learning more about new and promising lung disease research funded by the Lung Association or speaking with an expert about lung disease, contact Heather Mangan at [email protected] or 312-801-7631.


About the American Lung Association in Utah

The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Guide Seal, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit the newly redesigned website:

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