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Long-Term Mesothelioma Patient and Caregiver Couple Honored as 'Volunteer of the Year'
Date:3/30/2009

rough existing, albeit experimental, medical treatments, Shelly devoted herself to the desperate need for research funding to develop new, more effective treatments. She began to knock on her legislators' doors, urging the federal government to meet its responsibility toward the tragedy of asbestos cancer and partner in the effort to cure it.

But Shelly is not just waiting around for the government to act. She has become the Meso Foundation's most effective volunteer fundraiser. The first $100,000 she raised has in fact funded a federal government researcher, Dr. Mitchell Ho at the National Cancer Institute, NIH. Through the 2007 "Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation Grant in Honor of Craig Kozicki" Dr. Ho is developing special antibodies to block a recently discovered protein that plays a central role in mesothelioma. He has already published exciting early results, and so Craig's name is now permanently included in the annals of medical literature in connection with this important step forward. Shelly is already planning to raise another $100,000 to fund a second grant.

"Craig and Shelly have been a beacon of hope, and of direct action," says the Meso Foundation Executive Director, Chris Hahn. "They have inspired countless patients and caregivers. They have inspired me personally and all of the Meso Foundation staff and volunteers as we work every day to find a cure for this cruel disease."

In accordance with tradition, the Meso Foundation was planning to announce the award at this year's International Symposium on Malignant Mesothelioma, at the end of June in Washington, D.C. But it appears that Craig is nearing the end of his long battle. Says Hahn, "For the past 11 years, Craig and Shelly have taken advantage of every possible advance in treatment to keep the tumor at bay. But the pace of Craig's disease appears to have outrun the pace of the life-saving research, and Craig is out of treatment opt
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SOURCE Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation
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