Microscope | November 2019

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The official e-Newsletter of the Leukemia Research Foundation.

Dedicated to conquering all blood cancers by funding research into their causes and cures, and enriching the quality of life of those touched by these diseases.

#GivingTuesday logo with match message through December 3

Double the Impact: A Future Without Blood Cancers

Double your impact throughout the month of November, thanks to the Leukemia Research Foundation’s participation in a match program. Any online donation of $175 or more between November 1 and December 3, 2019 will be matched by the Coleman Foundation, up to $12,500! Support for critical blood cancer research, to help patients pay medical bills, for disease and treatment option education for patients and families, all matched! Make your gift count for double. Click here to donate now. Thank you.


image of researcher behind hood

New Investigator Research Grants Available

New Investigators are invited to submit Letters of Intent (LOI) for the Leukemia Research Foundation’s Hollis Brownstein Research Grants Program 2020-2021 funding cycle. Details and the required cover sheet are available here.

All questions about the LOI and/or the submission process must be submitted in writing to grants@LRFmail.org. Letters of Intent must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. central time on Friday, February 7, 2020.

image of Feng Yue, Ph.D.

Feng Yue, Ph.D.

Leukemia Research Foundation-Funded Researcher Selected

Congratulations to Feng Yue, Ph.D., who was recently appointed director of the Center for Cancer Genomics at the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University. Doctor Yue’s research focuses on genetic variants and their influence on human diseases. Read more here.

Doctor Yue’s research was funded by the Leukemia Research Foundation in 2016.

image of Panagiotis Ntziachristos, Ph.D. and Michael Verneris, M.D.

Panagiotis Ntziachristos, Ph.D. and Michael Verneris, M.D.

Video: Meet Two Leukemia Research Foundation-Funded Researchers

Meet Panagiotis Ntziachristos, Ph.D., assistant professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics and Medicine at the Feinberg School of Medicine of Northwestern University. Doctor Ntziachristos was funded by the Leukemia Research Foundation in 2016 and his research focus is on the epigenetic regulation of acute leukemia.
Click here to watch the video.

Michael Verneris, M.D.’s research was funded by the Leukemia Research Foundation in 2007 and his interest is in leukemia and the use of the immune system to treat cancer. Doctor Verneris is professor of Pediatrics, director of Bone Marrow Transplantation and Cellular Therapy, and The Barton Family Endowed Chair of Bone Marrow Transplant at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.
Watch the video here.

The Leukemia Research Foundation funds the blood cancer research of New Investigators, scientists who are establishing their own laboratories and are no longer under the tutelage of a senior scientist mentor, through its Hollis Brownstein Research Grants Program. The list of scientists currently being funded by the Foundation can be seen by clicking here.


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Blood Cancers Town Hall Meeting

Online registration is open now for the Annual Town Hall Meeting. The meeting will take place on Sunday, January 26, 2020 at the Holiday Inn Chicago North Shore, 5300 W. Touhy Avenue in Skokie, Illinois. The Town Hall Meeting is an educational program featuring a panel of medical professionals who answer questions about all blood cancers for patients, caregivers and families. Program admission is free. Information and registration is available here or call the Leukemia Research Foundation at 847.424.0600.


image of Bet on a Cure event

Guests enjoying the inaugural Bet on a Cure event in Peachtree City, Georgia.

Success Georgia-Style for Conquering Leukemia Chapter

Congratulations to the Conquering Leukemia Chapter of the Leukemia Research Foundation on hosting its inaugural Bet on a Cure casino event, held in Peachtree City, Georgia on October 26. More than 300 supporters gathered to enjoy Vegas-style gaming, food and drinks, auctions and more, while raising more than $120,000 to fund New Investigator research.

The Conquering Leukemia Chapter was established this year and is the first in the Atlanta Metropolitan Area. Thank you to all who attended and supported the event.

image of Dads’ Chapter at 2018 Rockin’ event

Get Your Rockin’ for a Cure Tickets Now

The 16th Annual Rockin’ for a Cure, hosted by The Dad’s Chapter of the Leukemia Research Foundation, is almost here. Get your tickets now for an exciting night of fighting blood cancers on Tuesday, November 19 at Durty Nellie's in Palatine, Illinois.


image of Linda and Larry Lowe

Linda and Larry Lowe

The Leukemia Research Foundation is dedicated to conquering all blood cancers, including those that may be rare and lesser-known. Here is the personal experience of a Leukemia Research Foundation supporter living with polycythemia vera (PCV) – a myeloproliferative neoplasm (MPN). Meet Linda Lowe, a nurse from Tampa, Florida.

“I had gone in for my routine yearly gynecology exam. I thought I was healthy. My doctor wanted me to have a set of labs done and my hematocrit [the ratio of red blood cells to the total volume of blood] came back incredibly high. They called me and said, ‘you need to see your doctor.’ I went on the Internet and started looking up reasons for very high hematocrit and immediately found out about PCV.”

A very high hematocrit means that one’s blood is too thick. This is dangerous because it leads to the risk of serious conditions such as stroke or heart attack. Her primary care physician then sent Linda to an oncologist, who confirmed that she had PCV.

PCV is the result of bone marrow creating too many red blood cells, hence the thickening of the blood. It is one of several forms of MPNs – a category of blood cancers in which there is an overproduction of white or red blood cells or platelets in the bone marrow. PCV is very rare. Only two out of every 100,000 people are diagnosed with it.

Linda’s treatment included a weekly, therapeutic phlebotomy, during which a pint of blood is removed to help regulate blood cell count. As her hematocrit became more normal, she then went every two weeks, then down to four. Fortunately, her condition continued to improve and now, she gets her treatment once every 3 months.

“It is important to get regular checkups and if you start noticing you are not feeling well, go see your doctor.” Linda noted that there is a risk of PCV progressing into leukemia.

Although MPNs may seem less threatening than their fast progressing counterparts – acute forms of blood cancers – research on how to better treat (or better yet, cure) these chronic blood cancers is critical. This is why Linda supports the Leukemia Research Foundation – to fund research to find cures for all blood cancers.


November 19
Dads' Chapter
Rockin' for a Cure

January 11
Joey's Angels Chapter
Joey's Angels Ski Days

January 26, 2020
Annual Town Hall Meeting

January 26, 2020
Donald Davidson - Alan Brin
Memorial Chapter
Skeeing for a Cause
2 vs. 2 Skeeball Tournament

January 30 - February 4, 2020
Donald Davidson - Alan Brin
Memorial Chapter
Ski for Research

February 8
Steve Grimes Memorial Chapter
Trivia Night
St. Louis, Missouri

February 29
Joey's Angels Chapter
Joey's Angels Ski Days

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