It has been an eventful month for MRA! The first deadlines are fast-approaching for our eighth annual Request for Proposals, we hosted our first-ever Patient Forum and we have begun planning for our next Scientific Retreat, scheduled for February 2015 in Washington, DC. These activities build upon our work with the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), which hosted the special Advances in Melanoma Conference late last month in Philadelphia, providing MRA leadership and many MRA-supported investigators a platform to discuss latest developments in the field.
Just this past weekend, MRA and the Global Resource for Advancing Cancer Education (GRACE) were in Chicago to co-host a unique, cross-tumor type immunotherapy patient forum, presenting an all-star line-up of experts in oncology and immunotherapy, not just for melanoma patients but also lung and kidney cancers. For those who could not attend the event in person, we will be sharing footage of the forum online—so stay tuned!
As we look forward to the fourth quarter of 2014, we remain focused on efforts to find and fund the most impactful melanoma research. There are promising therapies in late-stage development that we hope will soon become broadly available for patients even as clinical trials and expanded access programs remain important options today. As always, we appreciate the hard work of so many allies with whom we are collaborating toward achieving our mission of defeating melanoma.
Wendy K.D. Selig
President and CEO
Deadlines Approaching for MRA 2014-2015 Request for Proposals
The deadlines are fast-approaching for MRA’s 2014-2015 Request for Proposals, soliciting translational research grant applications from scientists and clinicians around the world. The RFP calls for ideas that could lead to high impact near-term clinical application in melanoma detection, prevention, diagnosis, staging, or treatment. During this cycle, MRA plans to award at least $7 million to new projects. Young Investigator Award (including Dermatology Young Investigators), Established Investigator Award (including BMS-MRA Established Investigators), and Pilot Award (including SITC-MRA Pilot Award) proposals are due November 11, 2014; All Academic-Industry Partnership Award (for Established Investigators and Teams) and BMS-MRA Team Science Award proposals are due November 21, 2014.
AACR Advances in Melanoma Conference
MRA proudly contributed support to AACR Advances in Melanoma Conference held September 20-23 in Philadelphia. The meeting highlighted MRA-funded research and results from its cutting-edge programs. Leading scientists and clinicians from around the world, including 30 MRA-supported researchers presented findings that underscore the continued progress in melanoma research. You can learn more about the developments in melanoma showcased at the AACR Melanoma Conference here.
EVENTS AND ALLIANCES
Make MRA Your Charity of Choice at AmazonSmile
Next time you shop online at AmazonSmile, you now have the opportunity to shop for a cause and support melanoma research. Be sure to select the Melanoma Research Alliance Foundation as your charity of choice, and AmazonSmile will donate .5% of all eligible purchases to MRA.
Allure Beauty Box Supports MRA
Mark your calendars! MRA is the charity partner for Allure’s Beauty Box sale beginning November 25 at 12:01 pm EST, with $5 from every purchase benefitting melanoma research. Each box retails for $44.95* and contains 24 full-size beauty products. To snag yours on November 25th, visit www.AllureBeautyBoxPromo.com**. There is only a limited quantity available!
*Plus $10.00 shipping and handling
**URL is not yet active
Fund Melanoma Research on Giving Tuesday
The holiday season is approaching, and once again, we’re taking part in Giving Tuesday! On Tuesday, December 2 you can join this annual day of giving to support MRA and melanoma research. Stay tuned for more details on how to participate.
The Big Orange Supports Melanoma Research
The Wayne Stinchcomb Big Orange Foundation recently hosted its Fifth Annual Bull and Shrimp Roast which raised funds to benefit MRA’s melanoma research program. The event also featured sunscreen samples from our corporate partner, MDSolarSciences.
OUTREACH AND VISIBILITY
|Dr. Jedd Wolchok & Rusty Cline, Carlea Bauman & Wendy Selig, Drs. Wolchok, Louise Perkins & Suzanne Topalian, Drs. Michael Atkins, Drew Pardoll & Wolchok|
Immunotherapy Patient Forum
As part of its emerging Patient Engagement Program, MRA joined with GRACE to host an Immunotherapy Patient Forum for Melanoma, Kidney & Lung Cancers on October 26 in Chicago. The forum featured an all-star lineup covering not only the hard-core science behind immunotherapy (Drew Pardoll) but also clinical insights offered by Michael Atkins, Matthew Helmann, Jason Luke, Sumanta Pal, Suzanne Topalian, and Jedd Wolchok. We were thrilled to also have presentations by Rusty Cline, a Stage IV melanoma patient who told of his experience with the disease and the current success he is having with anti-PD-1 therapy and Marianne Davis, NP, who gave a superb description of immunotherapy side-effects and their management. Patients, family and caregivers from near and far had the opportunity to learn more about this next step in cancer treatment. Full video coverage of the day-long session will be available on MRA’s website in the coming weeks, or you can read a recap on our blog.
MRA's Founder and Scientific Advisory Board Chair Featured at Partnering For Cures
MRA’s Founder Debra Black and Scientific Advisory Board Chair Dr. Suzanne Topalian will be featured speakers at the upcoming Partnering for Cures, a meeting convened by FasterCures on November 16-18 in New York City. This annual meeting brings together leaders from across all sectors of the medical research enterprise for the express purpose of fostering the collaborations needed to speed and improve outcomes-driven R&D. The MRA session will focus on the launch of the organization, its vision and impact on the melanoma field.
New Ally Story Featuring Massachussetts General Hospital
This month, MRA ally Sonya Behnke shares our collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center and Cornell University to fund an MRA Team Science Award. This three-year, $900,000 award is being led by Mass General’s Bin Zheng, PhD, and Lewis Cantley, PhD, of Cornell University. You can read the full story here.
News Videos in Collaboration with Health Guru Media
In partnership with Health Guru Media, MRA debuted new videos featuring melanoma patient Rusty Cline and Dr. Jedd Wolchok speaking on the advances in immunotherapy and the potential impact for patients. The videos are available via MRA’s YouTube channel and Health Guru’s website, a platform for health videos that has garnered over 1 billion views since 2006.
“Cancer 101” Congressional Briefing Series
As President of the National Coalition for Cancer Research, MRA’s President and CEO Wendy Selig spoke at the most recent "Cancer 101" Capitol Hill briefing, “Today’s Cancer Clinical Trials. Tomorrow’s Cures.” The briefing focused on the imperative for robust government support of the clinical trials enterprise, as the latest installment in the Cancer 101 Briefing Series that works to educate public policy makers, legislators and their staff about the impact of specific legislative initiatives on cancer research. You can watch full video coverage of the briefing session here.
MELANOMA RESEARCH ALLIANCE FOUNDATION (Melanoma Research Alliance; MRA) is a GuideStar Exchange Gold Participant Want to learn more about the GuideStar Exchange?
Click here »