Newsletter signup


West Lafayette – October 18, 2016 –

Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research Foundation and two prestigious foundations today announced a collaboration aimed at finding new approaches to diagnosing and treating inflammatory breast cancer (IBC). Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research Foundation, the Milburn Foundation and Susan G. Komen are seeking applications that will explore new ideas and novel approaches to combating IBC– a less common but particularly aggressive form of breast cancer that is difficult to diagnose and treat.

IBC is often difficult to diagnose because it frequently does not present as a lump. Instead, women notice symptoms such as redness and swelling or enlargement of the breast that are often mistaken as an infection, delaying diagnosis. By the time IBC is diagnosed, it is at an advanced stage (i.e., stage III or stage IV).

“It’s been a challenge to bring adequate research attention to inflammatory breast cancer,” said Ginny Mason RN, IBC Survivor and Executive Director of Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research Foundation. “Collaboration is essential for patient-focused success in both the research and nonprofit communities. We’re excited to be a part of this multi-organization initiative that provides a platform for creative collaborations and encourages submissions across disciplines.”

President and Chief Investment Officer of the Milburn Foundation Bryon Davis shared his thoughts on the genesis of collaboration among the three organizations.

“The Milburn Foundation is very pleased to have provided a valuable voice in structuring this multiparty collaboration,” Davis said. “By providing funding support and fostering relationships we helped to facilitate a new alliance that will support research innovation. We are exceptionally proud of what this initiative represents and are honored to partner with two organizations that demonstrate such a sincere commitment to the breast cancer cause.”

“Additional IBC research is needed to improve diagnosis of this unique subtype of breast cancer and understand how biology drives its progression, thereby leading to improved prognosis and more-effective treatment for those with IBC,” said Komen President and CEO Dr. Judy Salerno .

The Request for Applications for the two grants, each for $60,000, is now open on Applications will be accepted through November 28, 2016.

About Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research Foundation
Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research Foundation was formed in 1999 with the goal of facilitating research and educating both the lay and medical communities about IBC. As a web-based, focused non-profit, IBC Research Foundation has funded significant, quality IBC research projects under the guidance of a stellar Medical Advisory Board. IBC educational information can be found on the Foundation website and through the monthly newsletter. Survivor volunteers provide individual support by phone and email. The IBC Research Foundation strives to improve the lives of those touched by IBC through research, creatively educating stakeholders of all kinds, and tirelessly advocating for both current IBC patients and survivors. To learn more visit: or call 1-877-stop ibc. Find us on Facebook and Twitter (@IBCResearch).

About The Milburn Foundation
The Milburn Foundation is a catalyst for building momentum behind critical breast cancer research and is also the proud recipient of the 2016 Susan G. Komen Reach Award for fundraising innovation (see March Madness in the Breast Cancer Arena). We have an established history of high dollar donations to both Susan G. Komen and the IBC Research Foundation. We partner with companies and non-profits to increase their impact through matching gift and creative programs. As a private foundation we are poised to play a unique role in structuring partnerships and fund raising programs. Find out more by visiting

About Susan G. Komen®
Susan G. Komen is the world’s largest breast cancer organization outside of the federal government, funding more breast cancer research than any other nonprofit while providing real-time help to those facing the disease. Since its founding in 1982, Komen has funded more than $920 million in research and provided more than $2 billion in funding to screening, education, treatment and psychosocial support programs. Komen has worked in more than 60 countries worldwide. Komen was founded by Nancy G. Brinker, who promised her sister, Susan G. Komen, that she would end the disease that claimed Suzy’s life. Visit or call 1-877 GO KOMEN. Connect with us on social at

You Don’t Have to Have a Lump to Have Breast Cancer

The Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research Foundation is dedicated to researching the cause of Inflammatory Breast Cancer (IBC), an advanced and accelerated form of breast cancer usually not detected by mammograms or ultrasounds. IBC can be diffuse throughout the breast with no palpable mass. Lymph node involvement is assumed. Inflammatory breast cancer requires immediate aggressive treatment with chemotherapy prior to surgery and is treated differently than other types of breast cancer.

What is Inflammatory Breast Cancer?

“Inflammatory breast cancer is a rare and very aggressive disease in which cancer cells block lymph vessels in the skin of the breast. This type of breast cancer is called “inflammatory” because the breast often looks swollen and red, or “inflamed.”

Inflammatory breast cancer accounts for 1 to 5 percent of all breast cancers diagnosed in the United States. Most inflammatory breast cancers are invasive ductal carcinomas, which means they developed from cells that line the milk ducts of the breast and then spread beyond the ducts.

Inflammatory breast cancer progresses rapidly, often in a matter of weeks or months. Inflammatory breast cancer is either stage III or IV at diagnosis, depending on whether cancer cells have spread only to nearby lymph nodes or to other tissues as well.

Additional features of inflammatory breast cancer include the following:

  • Compared with other types of breast cancer, inflammatory breast cancer tends to be diagnosed at younger ages (median age of 57 years, compared with a median age of 62 years for other types of breast cancer).
  • It is more common and diagnosed at younger ages in African American women than in white women. The median age at diagnosis in African American women is 54 years, compared with a median age of 58 years in white women.
  • Inflammatory breast tumors are frequently hormone receptor negative, which means that hormone therapies, such as tamoxifen, that interfere with the growth of cancer cells fueled by estrogen may not be effective against these tumors.
  • Inflammatory breast cancer is more common in obese women than in women of normal weight.

Like other types of breast cancer, inflammatory breast cancer can occur in men, but usually at an older age (median age at diagnosis of 66.5 years) than in women.”*

*Citation: “Inflammatory Breast Cancer Questions and Answers Sheet.” National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health., 2012. Retrieved from Web 17 May 2012.