In December 2013, Ivy Elkins was diagnosed at age 47 with EGFR positive stage 4 lung cancer that had metastasized to her bones and brain. She has been treated successfully with targeted therapy medications since her diagnosis, thus allowing her to lead an active life and handle her lung cancer as a chronic disease. Ivy receives her treatment at the University of Chicago and lives in the Chicago suburbs with her husband Ben and her two teenaged boys. She has an undergraduate degree in English from Princeton University and a Master’s in Business Administration from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Ivy is a dedicated advocate for lung cancer research, having served as a consumer reviewer for the Department of Defense Lung Cancer Research Program, completed the AACR Scientist-Survivor program, acted as faculty for the ASCO/AACR Methods in Clinical Cancer Research Workshop, and participated in the program committee for IASLC’s Chicago Multidisciplinary Symposium in Thoracic Oncology. In addition, Ivy frequently shares her patient perspective with the media and with pharmaceutical companies involved in lung cancer treatments.
As one of the founding members of the EGFR Resisters Patient Group, Ivy recognizes that new treatments are desperately needed for patients who have developed resistance to currently approved targeted therapy medications. It is her hope that many patients will join forces with the EGFR Resisters in order to become a strong voice to encourage new research and clinical trials in this field. Through her advocacy work, Ivy attends many conferences and meetings, allowing her to spread awareness of the work of the EGFR Resisters to medical professionals and fellow patients.