A Major Breast Cancer Summit Soon Takes Place at Southwest

For more information, contact:
Robert Miller, email: rgmiller1@southwest.tn.edu
Robert Jackson, email: rjackson@southwest.tn.edu

Southwest Tennessee Community College's Allied Health and Nursing departments in collaboration with University of Tennessee Health Science Center will conduct a Breast Cancer Summit/ Research on November 29 from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. in the Nursing, Natural Sciences and Biotechnology Building Auditorium on Southwest's Union Avenue Campus. The three-story building sits on the corner of Union Avenue and Myrtle Street in Memphis directly across from the famous Sun Studios.

Oncologist Dr. Gregory Vidal and Researcher Dr. Athena Davenport will meet to discuss current issues relating to breast cancer and research. Dr. Vidal is a physician scientist with a clinical and research focus in breast cancer. He obtained dual MD and Ph.D. degrees from Tulane University and completed residency and fellowship training from Stanford University. After completing a postdoctoral fellowship and Instructorship at Stanford University, he accepted an assistant professorship position at the University of Tennessee West Cancer Center.

Dr. Athena Davenport became the first African-American to receive her doctorate degree in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock, AR. Her graduate research focused on the role of estrogen and breast cancer in black women and she is continuing this research today. Currently, Dr. Davenport's research goal is to reduce the risk of breast cancer development and death in women of African descent by looking at their genetic makeup and lifestyle behavior. She hopes that the use of saliva, in combination with annual mammography screening, will prove to be a reliable approach for detecting breast cancer at early stages of development.

Women of African-American descent, between the ages of 18 to 55, will be allowed to participate in this groundbreaking research if they desire. A saliva sample is all that is needed to unlock the mystery as to why certain breast cancer(s) are prevalent in Memphis/Shelby County areas.

For more information, contact Dr. Osborne Burks, email oburks@southwest.tn.edu, from Southwest Tennessee Community College at 901-333-5769.