Sari M Productions

Sky Foundation Inc. Set to Raise Awareness in November During Pancreas Cancer Awareness Month

 

West Bloomfield, MI -- (ReleaseWire) -- 10/22/2014 --Pancreas cancer is anticipated to move from the 4th to the 2nd leading cause of cancer deaths by 2020. This will be second only to lung cancer. There is still no definitive early detection test, and research remains underfunded by government agencies therefore, pancreas cancer diagnoses continue to increase.

“From the time that my husband was diagnosed with Pancreas Cancer, I was told to contact Sheila Kasselman, and Sky Foundation Inc. and when I did I knew that I had found a place that would help us with our needs, to cope with this terrible disease,” stated Bluma Schechter who lost her husband Robert in March of 2013.

These are the fact that Sheila Kasselman, Founder of Sky Foundation Inc. and pancreas cancer survivor knows all too well. Sky Foundation was created in 2008 to help raise critical dollars to help fund research and raise awareness for the early detection and treatment of pancreas cancer. “As a seven year survivor of pancreas cancer, I know first-hand how important early detection can be to the survival of this deadly disease,” explains Kasselman. “I was surprised to learn that there was no test for the early detection and that it is seldom detected in an early phase. Once detected the cancer has usually progressed making it hard for chemotherapy and radiation to respond well.”

The monies raised through Sky Foundation are used towards providing grants for pancreas cancer research. One of the four recipients is the Pancreatic Cancer Center at the University of Michigan and headed by Dr. Diane Simeone.

Many symptoms of pancreas cancer are vague and could be attributed to many different conditions. Symptoms can include abdominal and back pain, weight loss, and jaundice, loss of appetite, nausea, sudden-onset diabetes, and depression. Pancreas cancer spreads quickly, and is notoriously resistant to many of the chemotherapy and radiation treatments we currently use.

“We don’t completely understand the molecular basis of pancreas cancer, but research within my laboratory at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center is focused on trying to understand this terrible disease,” commented

Dr. Diane Simeone, Director of the Pancreatic Cancer Center the University of Michigan who will speakat the upcoming Sky Foundation Sky Bistro luncheon this November. “Our team was the first to identify a small group of cells, called cancer stem cells, in tumors from patients with pancreas cancer.”

Dr. Simeone has received a grant from Sky Foundation to focus on finding new therapies to target ATDC, as well as ways to block a protein that could make pancreas tumors more sensitive to current chemotherapy and radiation treatments. The team found that ATDC not only causes the cancer cells to grow faster and be more aggressive, but it also makes the cancer cells particularly resistant to chemotherapy and radiation. By targeting this gene, they may be able to make cancer cells more sensitive to therapies already in hand.

“Sky Foundation is totally committed to the goal of raising money to fund researchers to help accomplish the goal of early detection, and better treatments for the longevity of pancreatic patients there is no better reason to be involved than that, stated Bluma Schechter as she prepared to assist in this November’s events.

Dr. Diane Simeone, Director of the Pancreatic Cancer Center at the University of Michigan will be the featured guest speaker along with Dr. Philip Philip from the Karmanos Cancer Institute at the 6th annual Sky Foundation Inc. Sky Bistro lunch November 2nd, 12:00pm-3:00pm at the Townsend Hotel in Birmingham. For more information or tickets http://skyfoundationinc.org/, 248-385-5143 or sheilakasselman@skyfoundationinc.org.

Pancreas cancer is anticipated to move from the 4th to the 2nd leading cause of cancer deaths by 2020. This will be second only to lung cancer. There is still no definitive early detection test, and research remains underfunded by government agencies therefore, pancreas cancer diagnoses continue to increase.

“From the time that my husband was diagnosed with Pancreas Cancer, I was told to contact Sheila Kasselman, and Sky Foundation Inc. and when I did I knew that I had found a place that would help us with our needs, to cope with this terrible disease,” stated Bluma Schechter who lost her husband Robert in March of 2013.

These are the fact that Sheila Kasselman, Founder of Sky Foundation Inc. and pancreas cancer survivor knows all too well. Sky Foundation was created in 2008 to help raise critical dollars to help fund research and raise awareness for the early detection and treatment of pancreas cancer. “As a seven year survivor of pancreas cancer, I know first-hand how important early detection can be to the survival of this deadly disease,” explains Kasselman. “I was surprised to learn that there was no test for the early detection and that it is seldom detected in an early phase. Once detected the cancer has usually progressed making it hard for chemotherapy and radiation to respond well.”

The monies raised through Sky Foundation are used towards providing grants for pancreas cancer research. One of the four recipients is the Pancreatic Cancer Center at the University of Michigan and headed by Dr. Diane Simeone.

6th Annual Sky Foundation Sky Bistro Lunch
November 2nd Townsend Hotel 12pm – 3pm
Featuring, Dr. Diane Simeone,
Director of the Pancreatic Cancer Center the University of Michigan.
Ticket information 248-385-5143 or sheilakasselman@skyfoundationinc.org

Many symptoms of pancreas cancer are vague and could be attributed to many different conditions. Symptoms can include abdominal and back pain, weight loss, and jaundice, loss of appetite, nausea, sudden-onset diabetes, and depression. Pancreas cancer spreads quickly, and is notoriously resistant to many of the chemotherapy and radiation treatments we currently use.

“We don’t completely understand the molecular basis of pancreas cancer, but research within my laboratory at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center is focused on trying to understand this terrible disease,” commented

Dr. Diane Simeone, Director of the Pancreatic Cancer Center the University of Michigan who will give an update at the upcoming Sky Foundation Sky Bistro luncheon this November. “Our team was the first to identify a small group of cells, called cancer stem cells, in tumors from patients with pancreas cancer.”

Once the team identifies the stem cells, they have to figure out how to target them directly. Unless the stem cells are destroyed, the cancer will return. Research recently found that the majority of human pancreatic adenocarcinomas over-express the gene Ataxia-Telangiectasia Group D Complementing (ATDC). ATDC is highly expressed in almost 90% of human pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA), with ATDC expression levels in PDA at least 20-fold higher than normal pancreas and chronic pancreatitis, suggesting it has an oncogenic function in the disease.

Dr. Simeone has received a grant from Sky Foundation to focus on finding new therapies to target ATDC, as well as ways to block a protein that could make pancreas tumors more sensitive to current chemotherapy and radiation treatments. The team found that ATDC not only causes the cancer cells to grow faster and be more aggressive, but it also makes the cancer cells particularly resistant to chemotherapy and radiation. By targeting this gene, they may be able to make cancer cells more sensitive to therapies already in hand.

“Sky Foundation is totally committed to the goal of raising money to fund researchers to help accomplish the goal of early detection, and better treatments for the longevity of pancreatic patients there is no better reason to be involved than that, stated Bluma Schechter as she prepared to assist in this November’s events.

Dr. Diane Simeone, Director of the Pancreatic Cancer Center at the University of Michigan will be the featured guest speaker along with Dr. Philip Philip from the Karmanos Cancer Institute at the 6th annual Sky Foundation Inc. Sky Bistro lunch November 2nd, 12:00pm-3:00pm at the Townsend Hotel in Birmingham. For more information or tickets http://skyfoundationinc.org/, 248-385-5143 orsheilakasselman@skyfoundationinc.org.

For media purposes:
6th annual Sky Foundation Inc. Sky Bistro lunch, November 2nd 12pm-3pm at the Townsend Hotel in Birmingham.
Sky Foundation Inc http://skyfoundationinc.org/ or 248-385-5143 or by email sheilakasselman@skyfoundationinc.org.