LUNGevity has been celebrating Women's History Month by highlighting women making history in lung cancer research. These dedicated investigators, members of our Scientific Advisory Board and recipients of LUNGevity research grants, represent the important contribution being made by women in science.

In this installment of our series, we highlight two women in the rapidly evolving field of immunotherapy.

Some lung cancer patients are now benefiting from this exciting new type of treatment that uses the body’s own immune system to fight the cancer. This treatment aims to enhance the body’s immune response and stop the lung cancer from evading the immune system.


Julie Brahmer, MD

LUNGevity is honored to count Dr. Brahmer among the members of our Scientific Advisory Board. Dr. Brahmer, thoracic cancer director at Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and associate professor of oncology at Johns Hopkins, is an international thought leader in immunotherapy.  She was instrumental in studying Opdivo® (nivolumab), the first immunology drug to be FDA-approved for patients with lung cancer. Importantly, it was approved for people with squamous cell lung cancer, a population that until recently had not benefited from research advances.

Lucia Beatrice Jilaveanu, MD, PhD


Yale University

Response to PD-1 inhibitors in melanoma and lung cancer patients with brain metastases

Dr. Jilaveanu is studying patients with brain metastases treated with two new immunity-boosting drugs to find biomarkers that could predict the patients’ response to this treatment. Dr. Jilaveanu’s work is being supported by a first-of-its-kind collaboration between the Melanoma Research Alliance, LUNGevity, and the Lung Cancer Research Foundation.


LUNGevity will continue funding the people and projects that will accelerate advances in immunotherapy, bringing new hope to lung cancer patients.

To learn more about LUNGevity research grants in early detection, target therapies, and immunotherapy, go to