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Patti LaBelle Wows Crowd at 5th Annual Lupus Foundation of America Awards Gala
Date:5/8/2008

us, a devastating and life-threatening disease that affects more than 1.5 million Americans and five million people worldwide.

Dr. Gary Gilkeson, Chair of the LFA Medical-Scientific Advisory Council, announced the establishment of the Michael Jon Barlin Pediatric Lupus Research Program, funded by the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation and dedicated to unlocking the mysteries of pediatric lupus. The research initiative is named in memory of Michael Jon Barlin, who at age twenty-four lost his courageous ten year battle with lupus. As the first and only initiative of its kind, the Michael Jon Barlin Pediatric Lupus Research Program is an integral part of LFA's strategy to focus resources in research areas that hold great promise to bring down barriers and advance the treatment, prevention and cure of lupus.

Presenting the awards were Louis B. Susman, Vice Chairman of Citigroup Corporate and Investment Banking; Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH); and Sally Susman, Senior Vice President & Chief Communications Officer, Pfizer Inc. Notable guests included Ann and Vernon Jordan, Angela Burt-Murray, Editor-in-Chief, Essence Magazine; Randall Winston, Executive Producer, "Scrubs," and a LFA Board Member; and Mercedes Yvette, 2004 Runner-up, America's Next Top Model.

U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) and Dr. Annette Shelby and Congressman John Dingell (D-Mich.) and Debbie Dingell were the 2008 Honorary Chairs. U.S. Senator Robert Bennett (R-Utah), Congressman Kendrick Meek (D-Fla.) and Leslie Meek, Esq. were the Honorary Co-Chairs.

Lupus is a chronic disease in which the immune system attacks the body's own healthy tissue and organs, which can lead to debilitating pain, organ failure, and death. The disease strikes mostly young women in the prime of their lives, and disproportionately strikes young women of color, especially Africa
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SOURCE Lupus Foundation of America
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