Alex’s Lemonade Funding RVA Research

Look for another pin on the map of research funded by Alex’s Lemonade. Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation Innovation Award gave a $250,000 grant to Seth Corey, MD, MPH and Hrishikesh “Rishi” Mehta, PhD, who are conducting research through the Connor’s Heroes Pediatric Cancer Research Fund. The award is for their proposal entitled, “Predictive Modeling of MDS Disease Progression from Inherited Bone Marrow Failure Syndromes Using Novel Branching Process and Next Generation Sequencing to Improve Patient-Specific Survival.” What does that mean for our families? Like meteorologists who use computer programming based on laboratory-derived data to predict the weather, Drs. Corey and Mehta seek to predict when pre-cancer states will become cancers in children with inherited bone marrow failure syndromes. The goal of the research is to make personalized precision medicine a clinical reality. The proposal seeks to prevent life-threatening complications by using liquid biopsies. They want to create software to screen those children who are at risk, diagnose the presence of cancer clones, and monitor for disease progression toward cancer. It will hopefully indicate the optimal time for a transplant before chemo-resistant leukemia arises or develop prevention therapy.

As Dr. Corey says, pediatric cancer research cannot happen without support from philanthropy. We are excited for the team to receive this Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation Innovation Award. Stay tuned for a big announcement about our fall fundraising campaign that will support Dr. Corey and his research.