Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics (FAST) Makes Great Strides in Driving Awareness and Raising Research Funding

Non-Profit FAST Announces a New Partnership with Western Beef, First-Ever Fellowship Grant, a Gala Fundraising Event and the launch of FAST Australia

Dec 14, 2010, 08:05 ET from Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics (FAST)

NEW YORK, Dec. 14, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- The Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics (FAST), announced today its partnership with well-known grocer, community advocate and supermarket chain, Western Beef, Inc. Joining the effort to find a cure for Angelman Syndrome (AS), Western Beef will offer their customers the opportunity to make a one-dollar donation to FAST at the check out register in its New York, New Jersey and Florida supermarkets in an effort to spread awareness and contribute towards funding aimed at development of a cure for AS. Western Beef has been part of the New York community since 1978 and is a family owned business that prides itself on catering to the large and ethnically diverse communities where each of its 27 stores are located.

FAST Fellowship Program

FAST has received the first round of applicants for the new Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. The fellowships will provide two years of funding for research scientists or clinical scientists at the postdoctoral level who are working to find a specific treatment for AS.   Postdoctoral researchers work with a mentor to develop their own research program that they will use to establish their own laboratory.

"By offering support to postdoctoral researchers, we are encouraging young scientists to focus on AS for their own programs.  This raises awareness and encourages the best and brightest new scientists to join us in the search for a cure," said Rebecca Burdine, PhD, and Chief Science Officer for FAST.  

FAST is accepting applications for the next round of the Postdoctoral Fellowship Program.  More information on the Postdoctoral Fellowship Program and on Grants in Aid for existing AS research can be found at "We are excited to take the next step toward funding AS research with our new fellowship grants," said Paula Evans, founder and Chairperson of FAST. "This opportunity offers the best means of bringing bright new investigators into the increasingly exciting field of AS research.

"A Night for the Angels"

Celebrating the power of growth and opportunity, Western Beef presented "A Night for the Angels," a Western Beef fundraising gala, with proceeds to benefit FAST.  The gala was held on November 5 at the Crest Hollow Country Club, located in Woodbury, New York. The event included a cocktail hour, open bar, dinner, dancing, raffles, silent auction and grand prizes. The evening was a huge success and sold out at approximately 350 attendees, all which included friends, family, and partners of Western Beef as well as local families that have children with Angelman Syndrome.  The event raised a stunning $105,000. All proceeds for the night will be donated to The Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics.

"Western Beef is thrilled to be working with FAST and helping to find a cure for Angelman Syndrome," said Peter Castellana III, co-owner of Western Beef. "We are eager to be a part of such a community based organization and look forward to kicking off our partnership with the 'Night for the Angels' fundraising event."

About Angelman Syndrome

Angelman Syndrome (AS) was first described by Dr. Harry Angelman in 1965. Common symptoms include developmental delay and intellectual disabilities, happy demeanor, movement and balance disorder, severe sleep disorders, seizures and limited speech.  Most children are diagnosed between the ages of 3-5 but early detection and intervention can make a significant difference in the child's development throughout his or her life.  

About FAST

FAST is a Section 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure for Angelman Syndrome and related disorders through the funding of an aggressive research agenda, education and advocacy.  Our goal is to provide adequate research funding and a rapid grant review process to enable progress towards a cure for Angelman Syndrome in the most efficient way possible.  To learn more about FAST, Angelman Syndrome, or to make a donation, visit

Helping raise awareness for Angelman Syndrome worldwide, FAST Australia was founded in October 2010.  Designed to help shed light on the 1 in 10,000 to 15,000 children who are diagnosed with AS each year, the website will offer information and resources on how parents can be mindful of this rare neurological disorder which is often misdiagnosed as autism or cerebral palsy.


Melissa Elkins


SOURCE Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics (FAST)