Sunday, July 1, 2012

Four Year Transplant Anniversary: A Request for your Help With CLL Research on Ibrutinib and More to Control and Cure CLL

I received this important email from John Byrd, my doctor at OSU, and one of the most innovative and patient friendly researchers in CLL in general and ibrutinib in particular. He is asking for your support in his fundraising efforts though Pelotonia.

Dr. Byrd is looking for ways to save lives without the risks and miseries of an allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant or maybe even the use of the more toxic old school chemotherapy. 

In another email he said: The new trial that opened with Ibrutinib (Kami Maddocks PI) is being supported entirely by a 100,000 dollar grant from last years Pelotonia.  

He also wrote that the money raised is supporting the following studies that would not be happening without Pelotonia

1.  Post-doctoral fellow working on understanding role of autophagy in drug resistance in CLL
2.  PhD student working on an entirely new kinase inhibitor target for CLL 
3.  An idea grant from another lab (with us) looking at ATF3 as an immunosuppressive stromal factor in CLL

Four years ago today I had my transplant on Canada Day. It failed but I am still here.  Maybe it was a good thing that I never engrafted? I was spared the potential horrors of GVHD, but on the other hand maybe I would have been "cured" by now if it had taken. I will never know, but I do wonder.

Would I have made the same choice today with all the new options opening up?  The answer is probably not, but the data to help with that decision is far from being conclusive. We need to know more. It is so early in the research.

I am in the process of composing a post on the role of transplant in this nascent era of the new small molecules for CLL. It is an increasingly common question posed by patients and doctors alike.

If you can, please help Dr. Byrd and others in their research to get the answer to this and so many other cancer questions. Please consider clicking on the link to donate.


Please see Dr. Byrd's email below.

Dear Brian,

I am wrting to you because your help is needed.  I have decided to ride in Pelotonia and would greatly appreciate you to consider supporting me.  

Pelotonia is a grassroots bike tour with one goal: to end cancer. More than 10,000 supporters are expected to be a part of Pelotonia 12 on August 10-12, 2012. The ride will span two days and will cover as many as 180 miles. In its first three years, Pelotonia has attracted over 8,300 riders from 38 states, over 2,800 volunteers, hundreds of thousands of donors and raised $25.4 million for cancer research. In 2011 alone, a record $13.1 million was raised. Because operational expenses are covered by Pelotonia funding partners, 100% of every dollar raised is donated directly to life-saving cancer research at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center-James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute. I am writing to ask you to help me raise funds for this incredible event. Large or small, every donation makes a difference.

What will your donation be used for?  The money derived from this race supports research to identify new drugs and also to perform clinical trials in cancer.  I am a leukemia doctor focused on curing a disease called chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).  In the laboratory, Pelotonia is supporting idea grants to bring novel ideas that might translate into new therapies some day.  Additionally, it is supporting students and post-doctoral fellows to work on new antibodies (different from rituximab) and small molecules that could some day be therapies.  Addtionally, one of the trials that Pelotonia is supporting with money rasied from last year is with ibrutinib, a highly active bruton tyrosine kinase inhibitor that is very active in CLL.   We have seen this agent help many CLL patients and are delighted to have the support of Pelotonia to allow us how to use this medication better and along the way help patients with this disease.  Without Pelotonia, the trial with ibrutinib coul
d not happen.  I see Pelotonia as a way for us to move quicker to converting cancer to a chronic disease or one that is cured.   This is something I am passionate about supporting.  I hope you will contribute and remember no amount is too small.

When you follow the link below, you will find my personal rider profile and a simple and secure way to make any size donation you wish.

Think of this as a donation not to me, or Pelotonia, but directly to The OSUCCC-James to fund cancer research. Please consider supporting my effort and this great cause. My rider profile can be found at the following link:

Thanks for the support!


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Blogger Isaac van Sligtenhorst said...

I'd hesitate to label SCT as a cure. It's more of a trading a big devil for a lesser devil. Still active disease management, just a different disease. Don't get me wrong. It's still a phenomenal treatment but with all the complications involved, it is not a cure of disease.

July 9, 2012 at 5:55 AM  

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