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Help us research the link between bisphenols and breast cancer

There is growing evidence that exposure to environmental chemicals is increasing our risk of breast cancer. This area of research is poorly funded yet is important if we are to identify all risk factors associated with breast cancer. For this reason, Breast Cancer UK sets aside a proportion of its income to fund research into the links between breast cancer and exposure to harmful chemicals.

In our most recent application round, we called for applications which supported research into the effects of bisphenols on breast cancer risk. Only applications that focused on this area of research were being considered.

We have chosen this as a priority area of funding for several reasons. It builds on earlier work done by Breast Cancer UK, when we campaigned successfully for a ban on bisphenol A in baby bottles, and for a ban on its use in everyday products.  Bisphenol A (BPA) was identified as a substance of very high concern in 2017 and is banned for use in thermal paper. Although it is being phased out of many everyday products it is being replaced by other bisphenols. Research, including recent work funded by Breast Cancer UK, suggests these bisphenol substitutes may also affect breast cancer risk.

Currently, we are campaigning for a ban on the use of BPA and bisphenol substitutes in food contact materials, a ban on the use of bisphenols substitutes in products where BPA was used previously, and for bisphenol substitutes to be treated as a single grouping with regards to chemicals regulations. Research that examines the role of bisphenols in breast cancer risk will help support these campaigns.

Applications were invited from initiatives which demonstrate a contribution to Breast Cancer UK’s charitable objective to further research into the environmental and chemical causes and prevention of breast cancers.

Funding was limited to £100,000 per project and each application was assessed individually on its own merits.

Consistent with Breast Cancer UK’s view that there should be a transition away from in vivo animal testing, we only considered funding for research which relies on Replacement Methods (non–animal methods) of testing. Please see our policy on Animal Experimentation.

Assessment of applications is normally completed within three to five months of the submission deadline.

The current grant application round closed on May 7th, 2021 and applications are currently under review. The next application round will open in early 2022.

For more information or to discuss our grants programme please email science@breastcanceruk.org.uk or call 0845 6801322.

Further reading:  Animal Testing Policy, Grant Application Form and Grant funding Application Criteria

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