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2007: A Watershed Year for Lupus Research and Education
Date:12/28/2007

ong people with lupus and their physicians that new options are on the horizon. The outlook brightened this year when several pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies announced encouraging results of their clinical studies.

The Lupus Foundation of America (LFA) in 2007 greatly expanded its own lupus medical research program, "Bringing Down the Barriers," due in part to a partnership with the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation, which has a special interest in lupus in children and in men, and in mid- to late-state translational research. With the addition of $2 million from the LFA and its chapters over the past year, the LFA has to date awarded nearly $20 million in grants to approximately 400 investigators at 100 academic and scientific institutions nationwide. Other private lupus foundations and organizations also have provided funding for lupus research.

Lupus awareness received a giant boost this year when the Advertising Council, which has created some of our most endearing pop culture icons - including Smokey the Bear, McGruff the Crime Dog, and the Crash Test Dummies - began work on a three-year, $3 million national lupus public awareness campaign. The initiative is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health (OWH), in partnership with the LFA. When launched in 2008, the campaign will generate $30-$50 million annually in free media placements, and is expected to reach more than 100 million adults in the U.S. with life-saving information about lupus.

2007 will be remembered as a watershed year for lupus, during which decades of effort to address key gaps in the understanding of lupus and bring down scientific barriers began to pay dividends. These developments have resulted in new hope for a better quality of life for people with lupus and their families who struggle daily with the life-diminishing and life-threatening consequences of the chronic autoimmune disease.

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SOURCE Lupus Foundation of America
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
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