In 1993 a husband and wife team of Pathologist and Theatre Nurse took a decision that would irrevocably change the course of not just their own lives, but contribute towards improving the lives of thousands of people living with breast cancer.
Pat and Anthony Leathem set up Against Breast Cancer with the goal of establishing a research programme into the treatment and prevention of breast cancer. At that time they had no experience of running a charity… and no funding either.
30 Years later, Dr Leathem’s early discovery relating to sugar structures or altered glycosylation in primary tumours has matured into a branch of science known today as Glycobiology. Following Tony’s retirement, our Therapeutic Antibody Programme is today run by Professor Max Crispin who leads our long term programme developing antibody therapies for secondary breast cancer.
Professor Crispin runs the Glycoprotein Therapeutics Laboratory at the University of Southampton where, together with his research team are engineering antibodies, helping to harness the bodies own immune system, enhancing its cancer killing ability – while minimising side effects experienced by the patient.
This world-class research draws on Dr Leathem’s early research and acknowledges the importance of his work into the effect of diet and lifestyle on breast cancer recurrence.
This has all been made possible by fundraising, which Pat Leathem started by selling flowers from her garden. Like the research, our fundraising has changed considerably in 30 years too, although in a nod to our early beginnings, supporters can still purchase Sweet Peas on our online store.
Dr Leathem remains closely involved with the charity, he regularly gets updates from our research team and loves reading many of the inspiring stories from our supporters. Both he and Pat are both very proud that from humble beginnings, Against Breast Cancer today is able to continue his work, carrying out life saving research at some of the UK’s finest academic institutions. All of which has been made possible by funds raised by fantastic supporters.
From the bottom of our hearts, Pat and I thank each and every one of you who has supported Against Breast Cancer over the last exciting and rewarding 30 years. Your wonderful generosity and enthusiasm have been so humbling, and it has been an absolute pleasure to have shared this amazing journey with you. All of your efforts have helped us to make an enormous difference and, together, we have achieved so much! The multicentred research you fund is extraordinary and World Class, especially in analysing cancers and developing immunity. So, we send you a huge thank you once again for your unwavering support. Here’s to our overcoming breast cancer as soon as possible.
Pat and Tony Leathem
To celebrate our anniversary we’re inviting supporters both old and new to join Pat and Anthony Leathem and leave a dedication on our tribute page Join us, upload your messages, stories and photos – you can even make a donation if you wish.Leave your dedication