The Lobular Breast Cancer Alliance (LBCA) is a national network of patient-advocates with lobular breast cancer working with breast cancer researchers and clinicians.  LBCA advocates for ILC research and educates about lobular breast disease.  Learn more about LBCA and our goals.

LBCA’s mission is to bridge patients, clinicians and researchers to increase our knowledge of lobular breast disease and promote research that leads to advances in prevention, diagnosis, treatment and patient follow-up care.

LBCA is a project of Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs, a registered public charity.

LBCA c/o SEE 23532 Calabasas Road, Suite A  Calabasas, CA 91302 

LBCA Coordinators

Leigh Pate, Seattle, WA:  I am a public affairs consultant, communications specialist, a writer and a three-time cancer patient.  I want to build an effective advocacy voice for patients with ILC. Awards.

Lori Petitti, CA:  I am a former television and documentary producer. My interests are research advocacy, mentoring newly diagnosed patients and raising awareness on the unique aspects of lobular breast cancer.

LBCA Scientific Advisory Board

Steffi Oesterreich, PhD – LBCA Scientific Advisory Board Chair:  Dr Oesterreich is a Professor and Vice-Chair of Pharmacology at the University of Pittsburgh, and Director of Education at the Womens Cancer Research Center at UPMC Hillman Cancer Center and Magee Womens Research Institute. Her research interest is endocrine resistance in breast cancer, with a focus on invasive lobular breast cancer (ILC). She is passionate about increased understanding of development and progression of ILC, and enjoys working in multi-disciplinary teams, along with patient advocates, with the ultimate goal to decrease suffering from this disease.

Nancy E. Davidson, MD  Dr. Davidson is a world-renowned breast cancer researcher who serves as Senior Vice President and Director of the Clinical Research Division at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, President and Executive Director of the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, and Head of the Division of Oncology at the University of Washington.  More …

Rachel C. Jankowitz, MD University of Pittsburgh Department of Medicine, Division of Hematology Oncology, UPMC Hillman Cancer Center

I am an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology/Oncology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. My research focus includes study of invasive lobular breast cancer (ILC), endocrine resistance and signaling for hormone receptor-positive breast cancer, and breast cancer clinical trials. I have served as PI and/or co-investigator on many breast cancer clinical trials, and I am an active investigator in both the TBCRC and the NSABP.  I am particularly focused on study of biomarkers and treatment options for patients with ILC.

Christopher I. Li, MD, PhD, Program Head and Full Member Translational Research Program, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

Dr. Li is a cancer epidemiologist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center with research projects spanning cancer early detection/screening, etiology, and survivorship. He has significant expertise in cancer epidemiology and substantial experience in the design, leadership, and completion of multidisciplinary studies of cancer. More …

Otto Metzger, MD, Breast Oncology Center at Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center

I am a clinical investigator focused on the development of therapies for breast cancer treatment. My principal research effort is focused on investigating two subtypes of breast cancer: invasive lobular carcinoma (ILC) and HER2+ breast cancer. I also maintain an active clinical practice in the Breast Oncology Center at Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center.  More …

Jorge S. ReisFilho, MD PhD FRCPath, Chief, Experimental Pathology, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Physician-scientist Jorge Reis-Filho is a surgical pathologist.  His research interests are in the development of a predictive breast cancer classification system based on the oncogenic drivers of special histologic types of breast and salivary gland cancers, and in the understanding of the causes and impact of intra-tumor genetic heterogeneity in cancers.  More …

Christos Sotiriou, MD, PhD, Head of the J.-C. Heuson Breast Cancer Translational Research Laboratory, Institut Jules Bordet, Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), Brussels, Belgium; Head of Clinic at the Medical Oncology Department, Institut Jules Bordet; Research Director (tenured position) at the Belgian Fund for Scientific Research – FNRS (October 2017)  More …

Gary A. Ulaner, MD, PhD,  Associate Attending Radiologist; Associate Member, Tenure-track Department of Radiology Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center 

Gary A Ulaner is an Associate Attending Radiologist and Associate Member at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. He is dual board-certified radiologist and nuclear medicine, and focuses on FDG PET/CT and novel radiotracer development for patients with breast cancer. More …

 LBCA Scientific Editorial Board

Patrick W.B. Derksen, PhD   University Medical Center Utrecht, Netherlands  Department of Pathology

Dr. Derksen is a molecular cancer biologist focussed on cell adhesion receptors and how they control invasive breast cancer. During his postdoctoral research he was the first to demonstrate a causal link between loss of adhesion between ductal breast cells and the development of ILC. He has a strong track-record in mouse and human models of metastatic breast cancer. Based on these tools, his group is working hard to better understand the biochemical wiring of lobular cancer cells to develop effective targeted interventions.

Rita Mukhtar, MD University of California, San Francisco

Dr. Mukhtar is trained  in General Surgery, clinical research methods, and breast surgical oncology. Her research focuses on clinical outcomes in invasive lobular carcinoma of the breast, with publications on surgical techniques and response to neoadjuvant therapy in lobular breast cancers. During her training, she was a Doris Duke Clinical Research Fellow and studied the inflammatory response to infection. More …

Matthew J. Sikora, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pathology at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus

Dr. Sikora’s research on invasive lobular carcinoma (ILC) focuses on the unique biology of the estrogen receptor (ER) in ILC, working to define how ER drives ILC growth, and to understand the pharmacology of estrogens and anti-estrogens in ILC. The mission of the Sikora Lab is to develop new treatment strategies to stop anti-estrogen resistance in ILC, while working with advocates to focus on the priorities of patients with ILC. More …

 Featured LBCA Patient Research Advocates

Janice Axelrod, Pittsburgh PA:  I am a physician who devoted her life to treating women with gynecologic malignancies.  Now I am a retired oncologist, a breast cancer survivor devoting my life to breast cancer advocacy.

Marilyn McWilliams, Portland OR: When I was diagnosed 22 years ago, the local Medical School library had almost no information about my disease.  I became a patient advocate to increase research about lobular breast cancer.

Meg Kotler, Kensington MD:   I am a registered nurse with a specialty in public health.  As a two time breast cancer survivor, I am committed to advocacy and patient education about this disease.

Flora Migyanka, Ann Arbor MI: I am an account executive with a global oncology biotech company, a yoga teacher and patient advocate for the University of Michigan.   I am committed to raising awareness to researchers and clinicians about ILC.

Julia Levine, CA:  I am a metastatic breast cancer survivor and a patient advocate committed to raising awareness of metastatic lobular breast cancer. I am most interested in research and research advocacy to help researchers and organizations that study metastatic and lobular breast cancer.

Diane Mapes, Seattle WA: I’m a journalist and patient advocate working at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. I write about research and the patient experience in the realm of prevention/risk reduction; health disparities; health economics; early detection/screening and survivorship. I blog and tweet as @double_whammied.

Elizabeth Viggiano, OR: I was diagnosed with de novo stage 4 metastatic lobular breast cancer, despite years of normal mammograms. I am devoted to working with researchers and clinicians to improve detection and treatment of lobular breast cancer.

Barbara Neilsen, OH: When I was diagnosed in 2017, there was still little awareness of lobular breast cancer as a disease that is distinct from the other types of breast cancer. This remains true in the medical and patient communities. I am working to raise awareness and advocate for advances in detection and treatment more appropriate to this disease.

Laurie Hutcheson, MA: A lifelong health policy and management wonk, I’m currently an independent consultant and policy fellow with the National Academy of State Health Policy. Since my diagnosis, I’ve been grateful to the LBCA for the resources to learn everything that is and is not yet known about ILC. I’m interested in mentoring, raising awareness and advocating for more ILC-specific research.