Walther Cancer Foundation: Grants for Disease

OVERVIEW: The Walther Cancer Foundation supports a wide range of cancer research efforts with a geographical and academic focus on major Midwestern universities.

IP TAKE: Grants out of this foundation are difficult to come by, as most go to university-based cancer research programs in Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan. Otherwise, Walther looks to fund outfits that demonstrate the ability to secure additional funding through other sources.

PROFILE: The Walther Cancer Foundation was founded in 1985 by Dr. Joseph Walther, who lost his wife to colon cancer. Walther “realized that insights into this family of diseases go beyond initiatives that seek to unlock fundamental secrets of the transfigured cells that give rise to cancer.” The foundation supports both basic cancer research and efforts to “test new therapies and focus on human behaviors as well as ways patients and their families respond to a diagnosis of cancer.”

Walther's research grants program has two primary goals: to “support research to understand the biology of cancer with the aim of better treatments if not cures,” and to “develop a comprehensive approach for supporting patients with cancer and their families.” In general, Walther prioritizes “high-risk, potentially high reward efforts in basic laboratory, clinical, and behavioral cancer research.” Nearly all of Walther’s grants are awarded to principal investigators and programs at major universities in Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan. Past grantees include Indiana University, Notre Dame, Purdue, Ohio State, Michigan State, and the University of Michigan, though in the past it has also supported research at the University of California, San Diego.

The Walther Foundation’s grants range from around $60,000 to over $1 million. Grantseekers can learn more about Walther’s grantmaking history by reviewing its past grants.

The Walther Foundation no longer accepts unsolicited proposals. 

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