TORONTO – The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of Canada (LLSC) awards an unprecedented 41 grants for blood cancer research in Canada this year totaling $3.8 million, setting a new record for the country’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancers over its 62-year history.
A new addition as part of this year’s research grants program is the LLSC’s first New Idea Award. Of the 41 grants awarded, ten represent some of Canada’s brightest minds looking for new ways to advance innovation in blood cancer science from coast-to-coast. These New Idea Awards cover a wide range of research from an experimental treatment monitoring tool that can detect when myeloma flares up, to understanding abnormalities in a donor’s stem cell to improve donor selection in stem cell transplantation.
“The LLSC continues to increase its investment in research year-over-year to find better therapies and cures,” says Shelagh Tippet-Fagyas, President of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of Canada. “Together with our generous donors, corporate partners, and volunteers, we take great pride in playing a leadership role in supporting researchers in Canadawho are on the leading edge of breakthroughs that have the potential to save lives.”
With additional backing from its U.S. affiliate, LLSC is currently investing a combined total of $10.6 million to advance blood cancer research in Canada this year. It is a partnership that gives LLSC greater aptitude to advance research north of the border while also sharing in the successes taking place south of the border. Successes such as the approval of Kymriah, a revolutionary treatment called CAR-T immunotherapy for pediatric and young adult patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), which received approval from the Food & Drug Administration on August 30, 2017. The LLS funded the research behind CAR T-cell immunotherapy for the last two decades to bring Kymriah to patients by investing over $20 million to this end.
Each year, approximately 22,300 Canadians of all ages are diagnosed with Leukemia, Lymphoma, Myeloma and related blood cancer disorders. Blood Cancers are the third leading cause of cancer death in Canadian men and the fourth in women. Despite advances in treatments, the five year survival rate for most blood cancers is still lower than many other cancers.
On October 11, 2017, LLSC will host a free research webcast to help the public better understand the advances made in lymphoma research. It will be led by one of LLSC’s research grant recipients Dr. Jean-Sébastien Delisle at the Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital Research Centre in Montreal, Quebec. Visit llscanada.org/webcasts to register.
About the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada is the single largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancers In Canada. LLSC funds life-saving blood cancer research across the country, and provides free information and support services to patients and caregivers. Our mission is to cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. To find out more visit llscanada.org.
SOURCE The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada