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Environmental Factor, October 2015

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October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

By Kelly Lenox

Breast Cancer and The Environment Prioritizing Prevention Cover

In recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, NIEHS will join efforts across the U.S. to raise awareness, share information, and highlight research to help fight the disease.

Every year, NIEHS funds approximately $30.6 million in research to help advance our understanding of breast cancer, its causes, mechanisms, and prevention. Research is conducted by in-house scientists, through NIEHS-funded grants, and as part of the National Toxicology Program (NTP), which is headquartered at NIEHS. Across all the institutes and centers at the National Institutes of Health, annual funding totals approximately $681.6 million.

“Every year, we learn more about the role that environmental exposures may play in triggering this disease,” said NIEHS and NTP Director Linda Birnbaum, Ph.D. “Despite decades of research, the number of women diagnosed with breast cancer continues to rise. Since environmental factors can be identified and modified, focusing on these factors presents a tremendous opportunity to prevent breast cancer.”

NIEHS offers resources on breast cancer and the environment, aimed at both the general public and researchers, on its Breast Cancer Web page. Highlights include:

Research highlights

New research in the past year by NIEHS scientists and grantees builds understanding of breast cancer, especially with respect to the role of environmental exposures. The Environmental Factor recently highlighted several of these studies.

The NIEHS breast cancer awareness page, noted above, contains summaries of these and other research findings.

Breast Cancer Awareness Month is held every October to increase awareness of the disease and to raise funds for research into its cause, prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and cure.

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