NCCN Oncology Research Program Awarded $2 Million from Lilly to Study Mechanisms of Resistance to CDK4 & 6 Inhibitors in Breast Cancer Treatment

PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa. and INDIANAPOLIS, Dec. 3, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- The National Comprehensive Cancer Network(®) (NCCN(®)) Oncology Research Program (ORP) announces plans to solicit and oversee research projects that evaluate cyclin dependent kinase (CDK)4 & 6 inhibitors in the treatment of hormone receptor-positive (HR+), human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-negative (HER2-) breast cancer and underlying mechanisms of resistance. Research funding will be provided by a $2 million grant from Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: LLY).

"This program is part of our ongoing efforts to improve the lives of people with cancer," said Wui-Jin Koh, MD, Chief Medical Officer, NCCN. "The NCCN ORP facilitates clinical investigation into important questions. In this instance, we're managing research to understand mechanisms of resistance to CDK4 & 6 inhibitor treatment in metastatic breast cancer."

"We are excited to support NCCN to further understand the mechanisms of resistance to CDK4 & 6 inhibitors in advanced breast cancer, which is a central and critically important issue in this treatment landscape," said Maura Dickler, MD, Vice President of Late Phase Development, Lilly Oncology. "This work with NCCN is an example of our ongoing commitment to optimize treatment for people living with metastatic breast cancer."

CDK4 & 6 inhibitors have emerged as a key treatment in many patients with HR+ and HER2- metastatic breast cancer. However, resistance to CDK4 & 6 inhibitors, either intrinsic or acquired, can limit their effectiveness. This project seeks to support preclinical and clinical studies that elucidate mechanisms of resistance to CDK4 & 6 inhibitors and provide insights into how this resistance can be overcome or mitigated, resulting in potentially greater efficacy. Lilly will provide abemaciclib, a CDK4 & 6 inhibitor, for studies when needed. This endeavor by the NCCN ORP will utilize the scientific expertise from investigators across the 28 NCCN Member Institutions, and proposals will be reviewed and awarded by a scientific steering committee made up of experts from these NCCN institutions.

Earlier this year, the NCCN ORP was engaged by Lilly for a separate project, seeking scalable, reproducible interventions to address gaps in clinical care for treating gastric cancer. To learn more about the NCCN ORP, including ongoing clinical trials, recent publications, and shared resources, visit

About Lilly Oncology
For more than 50 years, Lilly has been dedicated to delivering life-changing medicines and support to people living with cancer and those who care for them. Lilly is determined to build on this heritage and continue making life better for all those affected by cancer around the world. To learn more about Lilly's commitment to people with cancer, please visit

About Eli Lilly and Company
Lilly is a global healthcare leader that unites caring with discovery to create medicines that make life better for people around the world. We were founded more than a century ago by a man committed to creating high-quality medicines that meet real needs, and today we remain true to that mission in all our work. Across the globe, Lilly employees work to discover and bring life-changing medicines to those who need them, improve the understanding and management of disease, and give back to communities through philanthropy and volunteerism. To learn more about Lilly, please visit us at and P-LLY

About the National Comprehensive Cancer Network
The National Comprehensive Cancer Network(®) (NCCN(®)), a not-for-profit alliance of 28 leading cancer centers devoted to patient care, research, and education, is dedicated to improving the quality, effectiveness, and efficiency of cancer care so that patients can live better lives. Through the leadership and expertise of clinical professionals at NCCN Member Institutions, NCCN develops resources that present valuable information to the numerous stakeholders in the health care delivery system. As the arbiter of high-quality cancer care, NCCN promotes the importance of continuous quality improvement and recognizes the significance of creating clinical practice guidelines appropriate for use by patients, clinicians, and other health care decision-makers.

The NCCN Member Institutions are: Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA; Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center, Omaha, NE; Case Comprehensive Cancer Center/University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center and Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute, Cleveland, OH; City of Hope National Medical Center, Duarte, CA; Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women's Cancer Center | Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Boston, MA; Duke Cancer Institute, Durham, NC; Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, PA; Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT; Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center/Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, Seattle, WA; The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, Baltimore, MD; Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University, Chicago, IL; Mayo Clinic Cancer Center, Phoenix/Scottsdale, AZ, Jacksonville, FL, and Rochester, MN; Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY; Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, FL; The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center - James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute, Columbus, OH; Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, Buffalo, NY; Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO; St. Jude Children's Research Hospital/The University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, TN; Stanford Cancer Institute, Stanford, CA; University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center, Birmingham, AL; UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center, La Jolla, CA; UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, San Francisco, CA; University of Colorado Cancer Center, Aurora, CO; University of Michigan Rogel Cancer Center, Ann Arbor, MI; The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX; University of Wisconsin Carbone Cancer Center, Madison, WI; Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, Nashville, TN; and Yale Cancer Center/Smilow Cancer Hospital, New Haven, CT.

Clinicians, visit Patients and caregivers, visit Media, visit Follow NCCN on Twitter @NCCNnews and Facebook @National.Comprehensive.Cancer.Network.

Lilly Forward-Looking Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements (as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995) about abemaciclib as a treatment for patients with breast cancer, and reflects Lilly's current beliefs. However, as with any pharmaceutical product, there are substantial risks and uncertainties in the process of development and commercialization. Among other things, there can be no guarantee that abemaciclib will receive additional regulatory approvals or be commercially successful. For further discussion of these and other risks and uncertainties, see Lilly's most recent Form 10-K and Form 10-Q filings with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. Except as required by law, Lilly undertakes no duty to update forward-looking statements to reflect events after the date of this release.

Media Contact - NCCN
Rachel Darwin

Media Contact - Lilly
Courtney Kasinger

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SOURCE National Comprehensive Cancer Network