Chris Martin [email protected] | 630-670-2745
DENVER- The International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) has selected Port Ludlow, Washington-resident Laura Book as a participant for the Supportive Training for Advocates on Research and Science (STARS) Program as a Patient Research Advocate (PRA).
The STARS program aims to help patient advocates evolve into patient research advocates—a distinction explained by a PRA’s ability to bring the patient voice to research-related efforts. PRAs work with clinicians and scientists to provide the patient perspective for lung cancer research and policy.
Book, a former textbook editor and online marketing manager, was diagnosed in August 2016 with stage IV non-small cell lung cancer, at the age of 64. She was put on erlotinib and remained on it for three and a half years with very minor progression in the lung and occipital bone, which were both treated with cyberknife radiation. In May 2020, a biopsy revealed a T790M mutation in the EGFR gene that had developed during therapy, known as a resistance mutation, and treatment with an investigational (now approved) tyrosine kinase inhibitor was initiated.
As part of her lung cancer journey, in 2018 Book joined the patient advocacy group EGFR Resisters. She serves on their board and is responsible for the group’s monthly newsletters. Recently, she completed the American Association of Cancer Research Scientist-Survivor Research Program and was the Washington state leader for the Day of Advocacy for the Go2 Foundation for Lung Cancer. This event allows patient advocates to meet with their respective US Congressional representatives to help bolster awareness and understanding of lung cancer’s impact on society. The event aims to increase research funding through federal programs such as the US Department of Defense’s Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP).
Ms. Book has served twice during 2020 as a consumer advocate for the lung cancer research program at the CDMRP, where she helped evaluate the impact of submitted research abstracts in order to best determine funding allocations. She represents the EGFR Resisters to LungCAN, which is a collaborative group of lung cancer advocacy organizations that work together to raise public awareness about the realities of lung cancer.
STARS Mentors and PRAs will receive complimentary registration to attend the IASLC 2020 World Conference on Lung Cancer (WCLC), to be held virtually January 28-31 2021. The WCLC is the largest international conference specific to lung cancer. To prepare for WCLC, Mentors and PRAs will participate in communication learning labs through Research Advocacy Network, education sessions and meetings with key opinion leaders in the lung cancer community.
About the IASLC:
The International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) is the only global organization dedicated solely to the study of lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies. Founded in 1974, the association's membership includes nearly 7,500 lung cancer specialists across all disciplines in over 100 countries, forming a global network working together to conquer lung and thoracic cancers worldwide. The association also publishes the Journal of Thoracic Oncology, the primary educational and informational publication for topics relevant to the prevention, detection, diagnosis, and treatment of all thoracic malignancies. Visit www.iaslc.org for more information.
About the WCLC:
The WCLC is the world’s largest meeting dedicated to lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies, attracting more than 7,000 researchers, physicians and specialists from more than 100 countries. The goal is to increase awareness, collaboration and understanding of lung cancer, and to help participants implement the latest developments across the globe. The conference will cover a wide range of disciplines and unveil several research studies and clinical trial results. For more information, visit wclc2020.iaslc.org.