- November 19, 2012
Penn's Long Term Relationship with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Laid Groundwork for
Transformative Therapies for Cancer Patients
PHILADELPHIA – In August, The University of Pennsylvania(Penn) announced a major new strategic alliance with a major pharmaceutical company to further develop novel immunotherapies using chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) technology developed in the laboratories of Carl June, MD, the Richard W. Vague Professor in Immunotherapy in the department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at Perelman School of Medicine and director of Translational Research in the Abramson Cancer Center. Penn recognizes the major role played by The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) in enabling these discoveries to be developed and tested in patients to the point that Penn was able to attract a commercial partner.
Since 2001, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) has played a vital role in advancing the pioneering work of Dr. June and his team with investments of awards totaling over $20 million.
“Our early and ongoing results in patients treated with chimeric antigen receptors represent more than a decade of investment and support from LLS that has helped enable us to treat cancer in an entirely new way. The advancement of this highly targeted, cell-based therapy powered by the might of a patient’s own immune system is an early example of the power and potential of precision and personalized medicine,” said, Carl June, MD. “Our lab and Penn look forward to continuing our partnership with the LLS to transform the face of cancer, in general, and blood cancer in particular.”
LLS continue to support this important work, announcing in September that the Society has awarded a new 5-year, $6.25 million grant to Dr June’s team so they can continue to develop other innovative novel immune-based therapies.
“Accelerating promising therapies for patients with unmet need is among the chief aims of LLS,” said LLS Chief Mission Officer Louis DeGennaro, Ph.D. “Our goal is to bridge the drug development gap and bring promising therapies to the next level of funding."
Penn Medicine is one of the world's leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and excellence in patient care. Penn Medicine consists of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (founded in 1765 as the nation's first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System, which together form a $4.3 billion enterprise.
The Perelman School of Medicine is currently ranked #2 in U.S. News & World Report's survey of research-oriented medical schools. The School is consistently among the nation's top recipients of funding from the National Institutes of Health, with $479.3 million awarded in the 2011 fiscal year.
The University of Pennsylvania Health System's patient care facilities include: The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania -- recognized as one of the nation's top 10 hospitals by U.S. News & World Report; Penn Presbyterian Medical Center; and Pennsylvania Hospital — the nation's first hospital, founded in 1751. Penn Medicine also includes additional patient care facilities and services throughout the Philadelphia region.
Penn Medicine is committed to improving lives and health through a variety of community-based programs and activities. In fiscal year 2011, Penn Medicine provided $854 million to benefit our community.
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society ® (LLS) is the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.
Founded in 1949 and headquartered in White Plains, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit www.LLS.org. Patients and caregivers should contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET. www.lls.org.