High-risk Leukemia Research
February 3, 2017
Henry Schueler 41 & 9 Foundation Presents $100,000 Check to Dr. Charles Mullighan During Presentation at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
On January 31, 2017, Matt Schueler, Founder of the 41 & 9 Foundation, and Board Member Gianna Funkhouser, met with Dr. Charles Mullighan and his team of researchers and scientists at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN. They were joined for a presentation by the Kuchta family, Rusty, his wife Jean, and daughters Molly, 17 and Maddie, 15, of a $100,000 check to Dr. Mullighan for his continued research projects involving leukemias.
Molly Kutcha, like Henry Schueler, was diagnosed with hypodiploid acute lymphoblastic leukemia (HALL) as a teenager but thanks to advancements in the understanding and treatment of this previously little understood subtype of ALL, has successfully completed three years of chemotherapy and is now in remission. The Kuchta family raised $40,000 at the “MollyStrong” golf outing this year, which they generously donated to the 41 & 9 Foundation. The joint gift of $100,000 to St. Jude’s was the Foundation’s single largest research donation made to date.
A portion of Dr. Mullighan’s research, led by post-doctoral fellow, Evan Comeaux, was recently presented at the American Society of Hematology conference, the largest blood cancer meeting in the world, and will be published later this year.
The Henry Schueler 41 & 9 Foundation is proud to be making a difference in supporting research that is truly impacting lives like Molly’s.
But our work is not done. Please join us for our Cycle for a Cure Ride from Chicago to Milwaukee on June 10, 2017. Sign up is easy and the bike ride is open to adult riders of all levels. Click here to register.
and commit to raising $300 or more to support your ride. Help the 41 & 9 Foundation continue to fund research that impacts people’s lives at a time when they need it the most.
Be proud of your past support and know your money is being used in groundbreaking research at the world’s premier and only Pediatric Comprehensive Cancer Center-St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
Henry would be very proud that we are continuing our mission to find out why this happened to him so we can prevent it from happening to others.
Comprehensive Analysis of Hypodiploid Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (“HALL”)
In conjunction with Dr. Stephen Hunger, (Chief of the Division of Oncology and Director Center for Childhood Cancer Research at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, PA) and Dr. Charles Mullighan (St. Jude’s Research Hospital) and other members of the National Children’s Oncology Group, The Henry Schueler 41 & 9 Foundation helped sponsor the most comprehensive analysis of Hypodiploid ALL (“HALL”) ever performed.
HALL is rare, with only 124 known samples existing in the U.S., and the project led to a gene analysis of samples from patients with three different forms of this rare leukemia to confirm genetic differences that could lead to new treatments.
The findings also provided the first evidence of the genetic basis for high-risk leukemia and results appeared in the January 2013 online edition of the scientific journal Nature Genetics.
“The cure rate for Hypodiploid ALL is only about half that obtained overall for children with ALL. The findings of this study are very important and have the potential to impact how this high-risk subset of childhood ALL is treated,” said Stephen Hunger, M.D., chair of the Children’s Oncology Group ALL committee and one of the paper’s co-authors.
“This study grew out of the efforts of Hank Schueler, a teenager who died from Hypodiploid ALL. He wanted to find ways to help treat other children with this type of leukemia. After he passed away, his parents established a Foundation to support research in Hypodiploid ALL. We thought that one way to do this was to conduct the genomic analyses reported in this paper. These findings would not have been possible without Hank’s idea and without support from the Schueler family.”
You can view the comprehensive press release St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital created with more on the study and its outcome here.
We are continuing to support this study at St. Jude’s. The Foundation has agreed to fund the second installment of a two-year clinical research technician position (the “Henry Schueler 41 & 9 Senior Research Technologist”) at St. Jude’s where they will assist senior researchers Dr. Mullighan and Evan Comeuax, Ph.D., as they conduct future studies that will provide new insights into the induction and development of leukemia and identify new therapeutic strategies for Hypodiploid ALL.