A special guest was in attendance at two of this year’s Brave the Shave events. Kathleen Ruddy, CEO of the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, stopped by the Guns n’ Hoses event March 10, and Kupper Chevrolet’s head-shaving event March 11, to show her support and share how donations to St. Baldrick’s are making a difference in children’s cancer research.
During Ruddy’s visit, St. Baldrick’s announced some very exciting news. The FDA approved a new drug to treat high-risk neuroblastoma, making it available not only through a clinical trial, but for all kids with this aggressive childhood cancer. Read an excerpt from St. Baldrick’s article: FDA Approves Childhood Cancer Drug.
Called Unituxin, or dinutuximab, this immunotherapy treatment is a result of research spearheaded by St. Baldrick’s researcher Dr. Alice Yu.
“The research that led to dinutuximab’s FDA approval was decades in the making, and the St. Baldrick’s Foundation helped to make it possible with their funding of my work,” Dr. Yu said. “All of the support and the collaboration surrounding finally making this treatment available is testament to the power of what we as individuals can do when working together.”
But your investment in the research is just part of how you helped make this happen.
Your advocacy was crucial to this victory. Without your voices helping to pass the Creating Hope Act, this treatment may not have gotten to this stage at all.
Childhood cancer drugs aren’t very profitable for pharmaceutical companies, which is why so few have been developed. But as a result of the childhood cancer community’s united advocacy efforts, the Creating Hope Act changed that, offering companies vouchers to expedite the development and approval of these drugs.
Unituxin is the first ever pediatric cancer drug to come out of this voucher program.
Whether you shaved, volunteered, or donated, YOU were part of turning this research into a new treatment for kids with cancer. You are an integral part of this incredible news.
Find the whole story here: FDA Approves Childhood Cancer Drug.
Ruddy and Basin Electric Communications Manager Mary Miller also did an interview on KFYR TV’s Country Morning Today:
- March 11, 2015: Kathleen Ruddy and Mary Miller on Country Morning Today (Go to 1:30 to hear from Ruddy.)