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2009: A Year of Many Firsts in Efforts to Overcome Lupus
Date:12/23/2009

ress expanded its support for lupus by greatly increasing funding for the National Lupus Patient Registry, and providing new funding for a national health provider education program to improve early diagnosis and treatment of lupus and reduce health disparities. In addition, Congress appropriated additional funding to support lupus research through the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Defense's Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program.

These achievements were the result of the combined efforts of the Lupus Foundation of America and its national network of chapters and support groups, scientists and clinicians, industry representatives, congressional champions and leaders of federal agencies, countless lupus advocates and other volunteers, donors, and individuals with lupus and their families who have dedicated their energies to address this urgent health problem. While momentum had been building throughout the past decade, the historic events of 2009 provided solid evidence that we have entered a new era of discovery and hope in the search for the causes of and cure for lupus.

The LFA has compiled a list of ten significant accomplishments, including several firsts, in efforts to overcome lupus and its impact on individuals and families.

1. First Successful Completion of a Phase III Clinical Study of a potential New Treatment for Lupus

Human Genome Sciences (HGS) and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) announced positive results from BLISS-52 and BLISS-76, two large-scale phase III clinical trials of BENLYSTA(TM) (belimumab) for treating systemic lupus. Both trials succeeded in meeting their primary endpoints, which should make BENLYSTA eligible for approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Upon approval, BENLYSTA would be the first-ever treatment developed specifically for lupus, and the first new FDA-approved drug for lupus in more than 50 years.

2. Ad Council Launches its Firs
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SOURCE Lupus Foundation of America
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