SILICON VALLEY, Calif., May 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Celebrity honorary chair, Yolanda Hadid, some of the worlds most esteemed scientists and physicians, prominent philanthropists and Who's Who guests from around the world whose families have been infected with Lyme disease (the fastest growing infectious disease in the US) rallied together at Stand4Lyme® Foundation's Catalyst 4 The Cure Concert May 22nd to STAND united to accelerate a cure for Lyme disease.
The 350 guests took part in Making Lyme History shaking their booty with KC and the Sunshine Band, live in concert, who made a generous $100,000 in-kind donation towards their performance. The sold-out event was held at the estate of Stand4Lyme's founders, Sherry and Laird Cagan with majestic panoramic views of Silicon Valley.
Stand4Lyme's launch raised nearly $1 million in contributions and pledges to benefit the Stanford Lyme Working Group's research program which includes collaborations at other leading institutions such as Harvard, Johns Hopkins, Columbia, Tulane and Duke. Dr. Neil Spector, a collaborating Duke cancer researcher who helped developed the breast cancer therapy, HER2 had to undergone a heart transplant due to undiagnosed Lyme disease. Sponsors from other supporting Lyme organizations such as Heather Hearst's Project Lyme, Focus on Lyme and speaker Phyllis Mervine on MyLymeData, a project of Lymedisease.org, have come together in support of the launch of Stand4Lyme's collaborative Lyme research platform along with several other sponsors such as Ferrari, Greg Goumas Real Estate Services and Patient Care America.
Honored were ten LYME100™ leaders, who pledged $50K or more to support the Stanford Lyme Working Group. Stand4Lyme commemorated them for taking a STAND 4 The Cure™ with a bronze sculpture, by artist Sherry Cagan. Cagan sculpted a medical noble figure to honor those leaders who take a STAND to help find a cure for Lyme disease. Also honored was Yolanda Hadid for her contribution in Lyme awareness.
Stand4Lyme also hosted a Symposium Brunch the same day of the event for a more in-depth discussion on Lyme disease with the best and brightest minds from the major institutions such as Dr. Irving Weissman, Professor of Pathology and Developmental Biology and Director, Institute of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, who spoke at the event and is an advisor of the Stanford Lyme Working Group.
"Collaboration is a complex endeavor, so integrating the right partners is key. Through Stand4Lyme's unique partnership with Stanford scientists and collaborative researchers, leveraging their critical assets, there is a potential to change the trajectory and take new discoveries from project to patient in the near future. This gives me great hope that Lyme patients will have a more promising future," states; Yolanda Hadid – Lyme disease advocate - a member of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills TV show.
Stand4Lyme Foundation founder/President and Catalyst 4 The Cure Chair shared her personal connection to Lyme, "The catalyst to our family's commitment to a cure draws from my personal near-death experience and my children's daily struggles with Lyme disease. My husband and I founded Stand4Lyme, joining forces with Stanford scientists, to pave a medical path to wellness for patients at all stages of the disease, helping end prolonged suffering of millions."
"Stand4Lyme is hot on the trail of curing this terrible disease. Stand4Lyme joining forces with Stanford will lead to answers," states Bob Klein, Chairman of Americans for Cures and Chairman Emeritus of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine.
The conventional model of research incentivizes individuals to work in silos. Scientists' applying for individual grants is inherently a slow and competitive process. We must change the trajectory. Stand4Lyme was created to establish a platform at Stanford to expedite the process where an interdisciplinary group of scientists can work under a common umbrella organization, sharing findings, bringing together the most esteemed scientists at the major universities and practitioners in the field, for a cooperative and holistic approach. By breaking down the silos and collaborating across the country and the world, this can dramatically accelerate the research.
"We at Stanford will do our best to make Lyme disease History," states Mark Davis PhD Director of Stanford Institute for Immunology and Stanford Lyme Working Group Co-Director.
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SOURCE Stand4Lyme Foundation