The DeGregorio Family Foundation for Gastric and Esophageal Cancer seeks to promote and facilitate education and collaborative research on the pathogenesis, early diagnosis, and treatment of Upper Gastrointestinal Malignancies.
Upper gastrointestinal malignancies, including cancers of the stomach, esophagus, and the gastroesophageal junction (GEJ), are responsible for over one million new cancer diagnoses worldwide, and are the second most common cause of global, cancer-related deaths. In the United States, despite the near epidemic rise in GEJ malignancies, these cancers remain Orphan diseases - under-funded and under-researched by the medical community.
As many as 10%-15% of new gastric cancer diagnoses have a familial component. Hereditary Diffuse Gastric Cancer (HDGC) is the best defined of the familial syndromes, and is associated with a mutation in the E. Cadherin gene. HDGC is responsible for up to 30% of all familial gastric cancer cases, or 3-5% of all new gastric cancer diagnoses. HDGC is associated with an increased risk of lobular breast cancer. Currently there is no other treatment for a person found to have the HDGC genetic mutation except total gastrecomy.
The scope and depth of the current research into understanding the biology and etiology of stomach and esophageal related malignancies does not match the enormous global scope and impact of these diseases. The field is in desperate need of, and is ripe for, medical advancement. The purpose of the DeGregorio Family Foundation is to fund research and education and to encourage collaboration amongst researchers in order to facilitate earlier diagnoses and novel treatment therapies for stomach and esophageal cancer related disorders. The DeGregorio Family Foundation seeks to shift the tide and strive towards the goal of containment and treatment of these cancers.