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The Triad Golfers Against Cancer has awarded two grants to researchers at the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center totaling $65,000.

A grant of $50,000 was award to research into prostate cancer detection by researchers Michael Woods, MD; Carol Otey, PhD and Hong Jin Kim, MD at UNC and Qun Lu, PhD, at the Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University. The research aims to use a urine-based test for prostate cancer that detects the protein antibody delta-catenin associated with the disease. The development of a non-invasive test could replace the current punch test and its risks of side effects such as infection.

Another grant of $15,000 will support research into the early detection of ovarian cancer by Vickie Bae-Jump, MD, PhD, assistant professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology; Steven Soper, PhD, professor in the Department of Chemistry; and Paola Gehrig, MD, director of the Department of Gynecologic Oncology. The team is researching technology for the more sensitive detection of circulating tumor cells in ovarian cancer and its application in the early diagnosis of this often fatal disease.

Since 2006, the Triad-based Golfers Against Cancer (GAC) has donated more than $625,000 to support research at UNC Lineberger. This year, the group awarded $250,000 in grants to four North Carolina institutions – the University of North Carolina, Wake Forest University, East Carolina University and Duke University. A GAC research committee chose the awards based on the viability and scope of institutional research and the ability of the projects to procure additional matching grants to enhance the GAC awards.

GAC, an all-volunteer organization, has raised and donated almost $2 million for cancer research at North Carolina cancer centers. That total has been expanded to more than $8 million in additional funding from other sources benefiting North Carolina medical research facilities. The Triad-area GAC funding supports medical research projects that often lead to new drugs, treatment options and screening tools, and also aids the state’s growing biotech industry by providing an economic enhancement for the state.

GAC was founded in 2005 as a local unit of a national charitable organization founded in 1997 by golfers committed to raising money for cancer research. Since its formation, the associated golfers groups have raised more than $250 million nationally.