WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., Sept. 8, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Hockey Fights Cancer™, a joint charitable initiative of the National Hockey League and the National Hockey League Players' Association, joined forces with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) during the 2010-11 season to take a shot at pediatric cancer.
To recognize the impact of the partnership, NHL players - Zach Parise (New Jersey Devils), John Tavares and Michael Grabner (NY Islanders) and Henrik Lundqvist and Brad Richards (NY Rangers) joined Adolfo Ferrando, M.D., Ph.D., of Columbia University whose work is focused on T-Cell leukemia and representatives of LLS at NHL headquarters to present a plaque to Hockey Fights Cancer thanking it for its support in the fight to eradicate pediatric cancer. (* see info below to access photo)
Leukemia is the most common childhood cancer. The money raised through the campaign is funding an LLS portfolio of 10 pediatric cancer research grants, including one supporting the work of Dr. Ferrando.
The Hockey Fights Cancer/LLS campaign also included Public Service Announcements featuring NHL players, and a mobile phone texting campaign that was promoted during hockey games throughout the U.S. and Canada. The campaign gave LLS chapters across North America the opportunity to leverage and strengthen relationships with their local NHL teams. Together they hosted special events at NHL arenas that helped raise awareness and funds to support the initiative.
Among the teams that participated were the Anaheim Ducks and the Washington Capitals. LLS's Orange County Chapter and the Ducks' partnership included promotions on the Ducks' website, in their publications and on Ducks radio. The Ducks dedicated a game to LLS and presented a generous check to support cancer research. Many other chapters also made successful connections with their teams. The Capitals dedicated a game to LLS, during which LLS honored patients were recognized on center ice. The Capitals made special jerseys with LLS colors and the HFC patch that players wore during pregame warm-ups, and auctioned the autographed shirts during the game.
Ferrando is working on targeting a molecule called NOTCH1 that can cause T-cell leukemias and lymphomas when it is abnormally activated. His clinical colleagues are conducting a Phase 1 clinical trial for patients with relapsed or refractory T-cell leukemias to test whether NOTCH inhibitors can increase the effectiveness of chemotherapy in patients with T-cell leukemias.
"LLS is extremely grateful to the NHL, the Players and the entire hockey community and its fans for coming together to support this effort," said LLS President and CEO John Walter. "These funds will be a tremendous help to researchers such as Dr. Ferrando who are working hard to beat childhood cancer."
About The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society ® (LLS) is the world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.
Founded in 1949 and headquartered in White Plains, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit www.LLS.org or contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET. www.lls.org.
About Hockey Fights Cancer™
Hockey Fights Cancer™ is a joint charitable initiative founded in December 1998 by the National Hockey League and National Hockey League Players' Association. It is supported by players, NHL member clubs, NHL alumni, the NHL Officials' Association, professional hockey athletic trainers and equipment managers, corporate marketing partners, broadcast partners and fans throughout North America. The goal of Hockey Fights Cancer™ is to raise money and awareness for national and local organizations involved in cancer care and research. To date, Hockey Fights Cancer™ has raised more than $12 million. Hockey Fights Cancer™ is a component of The Biggest Assist Happens Off The Ice™, the National Hockey League's® and National Hockey League Players' Association's social responsibility program that builds on hockey's long-standing tradition of addressing important social issues in North America and around the world.
*Photos from NHL community events will be available through Getty Images on www.gettyimages.com.
NHL, the NHL Shield and National Hockey League are registered trademarks and Hockey Fights Cancer and The Biggest Assist Happens Off The Ice are trademarks of the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.
SOURCE The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society