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  • Posted Friday July 26, 2019

SmartPractice Donates $235,000 for TGen-led Breast Cancer Research

Donations support the development of liquid biopsies to monitor and optimize breast cancer treatment for every patient

PHOENIX, Ariz. — July 26, 2019 — SmartPractice, a healthcare marketing and supplies firm, announced a new $60,000 donation to the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), an affiliate of City of Hope, for the development of a quicker and more accurate way to detect and monitor breast cancer.

This new donation contributes to the $235,000 SmartPractice has gifted to TGen since 2015. SmartPractice’s financial support is helping TGen develop a “liquid biopsy,” a simple blood test that could provide early warning of cancer’s progression and continuous, non-invasive disease monitoring during treatment.

“We have donated to TGen for five years now because we believe TGen is making a unique contribution to advancing state-of-the-art treatments for breast cancer,” said Dr. Curt Hamann, CEO of SmartPractice.

Dr. Muhammed Murtaza, Assistant Professor and Co-Director of TGen's Center for Noninvasive Diagnostics, is researching genetic markers called circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) to help determine the precise nature of each patient's tumor.

"We are developing methods to precisely measure the contribution of tumor tissues in blood," said Dr. Murtaza. "If we can successfully demonstrate that cancers can be accurately detected during and after treatment, using ctDNA, it could enable us to test individualized treatment plans in future clinical trials."

Early detection of breast cancer — and identifying the exact type of breast cancer — is essential to effectively treat the disease and give patients the best chance of recovery. In addition, early detection may help limit unnecessary or ineffective therapies in some breast cancer patients.

"By supporting this remarkable research at TGen, we at SmartPractice believe we can help make a real difference in the lives of breast cancer patients," said Michelle Shaw, Vice President of Human Resources at SmartPractice.

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About TGen, an affiliate of City of Hope
Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is a Phoenix, Arizona-based non-profit organization dedicated to conducting groundbreaking research with life-changing results. TGen is affiliated with City of Hope, a world-renowned independent research and treatment center for cancer, diabetes and other life-threatening diseases:  This precision medicine affiliation enables both institutes to complement each other in research and patient care, with City of Hope providing a significant clinical setting to advance scientific discoveries made by TGen. TGen is focused on helping patients with neurological disorders, cancer, diabetes and infectious diseases through cutting-edge translational research (the process of rapidly moving research toward patient benefit).  TGen physicians and scientists work to unravel the genetic components of both common and complex rare diseases in adults and children.  Working with collaborators in the scientific and medical communities worldwide, TGen makes a substantial contribution to help our patients through efficiency and effectiveness of the translational process. For more information, visit: Follow TGen on FacebookLinkedIn and Twitter @TGen.

Media Contact:
Steve Yozwiak
TGen Senior Science Writer
[email protected]

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