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2023 PERFORMANCE REPORT.

Funds provided by the GBM Foundation to our medical researchers had a major impact this year. In February, Dr. Derek Wainwright, Scientific Director for Brain Tumor Research at Loyola University Strich School of Medicine, was notified by the National Institute of Health (NIH) that his grant application was in the top 3% of all NIH applications.  His grant funding will be used to understand why older adults succumb to brain tumors significantly faster than younger people.  By identifying these age-dependent factors, Dr. Wainwright hopes to therapeutically neutralize them so older adults can live significantly longer, like young GBM patients do.  Dr. Wainwright acknowledged our support for this research and said this award would not have been possible without the early funding that the GBM Foundation supplied him. 

 

In October, Dr. Edjah Nduom, neurosurgical oncologist at the Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University, was awarded a 5-year, $1.96M research award from the NIH to support his research on long-coding RNAs in the immune cells of patients with glioblastoma, hoping to redirect these immune cells to attack brain tumors instead of supporting their growth.  Dr. Nduom said that our “support truly made a difference in my lab’s ability to obtain our recent NIH grant.”  This year Dr. Nduom was also awarded the Daniel Louis Barrow Endowed Chair at Emory University School of Medicine.  The endowed chair not only recognizes his achievements in neurosurgery, but also will provide resources to support his research efforts to improve the lives of those affected by malignant brain tumors by harnessing the power of the immune system. Edjah Nduom awarded Daniel Louis Barrow Endowed Chair at Emory University School of Medicine

 

We continue to support the National Brain Tumor Society’s DNA Damage Response (DDR) Consortium.  This is a collaboration of world-class researchers advancing an emerging and promising, but underdeveloped, area of cancer research: a tumor’s DDR network.  Last year the DDR Consortium evaluated 14 new therapeutics in preclinical experiments and has a phase II clinical trial underway evaluating a DNA damage response drug.  This work will not only advance treatment for brain tumors but other cancers as well.

We have formed a new partnership with the South Pole Trek 4 Cancer. In December, Lance Kawaguchi, a former banker who is now the CEO of a brain tumor non-profit, embarked on a remarkable journey to Antarctica and the South Pole. His mission: to raise a flag in honor of cancer, representing not only the GBM Foundation, but also 22 other esteemed cancer charities worldwide. The South Pole Trek 4 Cancer is about breaking down conventional barriers and traditional silos that make up non-profit work and instead leading the way with global collaboration by bringing together multiple charities from around the world to fight together. In a gesture of unity, once Lance arrives at the South Pole, he will raise a flag on behalf of each charity represented and on behalf of cancer patients around the world.

We hosted 3 major fund-raising events this year:  In March, at Rahr Brewery in Fort Worth Texas, in September, at the Dead Armadillo in Tulsa Oklahoma, and in October at Highmark Brewery in Fredericksburg, Virginia.  Each event had a silent auction, great music and support from volunteers and donors.   We can’t thank everyone enough for their help in making these events successful.  Full Pint Production in Atlanta continues to be a Corporate Sponsor and Kendra Scott supported our events as well.  With the events, sponsorships and donations from over 70 individual donors, we raised $52,666 this year for GBM research. 

 

This was a Record Year for contributions to our researchers.  This year we provided a total of $65,000 to our research partners.  We continue to look at other opportunities to invest in innovative research that will result in better outcomes for GBM patients and eventually a cure.

In addition to funding research, we continue to provide patient advocacy and support.  Through the National Brain Tumor Society (NBTS), we are given access to our Congressional Representatives and the opportunity to advocate for legislation and funding to improve patient care and to increase Government funding for cancer research.  If you are interested in making your voice heard, please find out how at Head to the Hill (braintumor.org).  We also receive inquiries from newly diagnosed patients and caregivers asking what to do when faced with this life-changing news.  Partnering with NBTS Personalized Support and Navigation team, we can provide them with a patient advocate that will help them navigate the treatments and trials that are available.

Thanks again to all who have supported us with their resources.  Together we can make a difference.

Sincerely,

Carly and Ric, Co-Founders GBM Foundation 

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