Tuesday, April 10, 2018

It’s time to rally The Johnnie Walkers for our annual Walk on Sunday, May 20th to raise funds and awareness for multiple sclerosis research.

 Our team is working on the next breakthrough as we are continuing to raise funds for The NU/UC Tolerance Initiative. Drs. Steve Miller of Northwestern Medical School and Brian Popko of The University of Chicago are collaborating on a very promising line of research to induce tolerance of the immune system using nanotechnology to prevent “friendly fire” on healthy cells. They attach myelin proteins to biodegradable nanoparticles (myelin is the coating on nerves that is destroyed by a confused immune system in MS). 

Once this nanomedicine is injected into the blood and goes through the spleen and liver, the immune system is re-taught that healthy myelin is not an invading outside threat and should be left alone and the autoimmune cells becomes “tolerized”. Drs. Miller and Popko are also combining the tolerance protocol with co-administration of drugs that stimulate myelin repair and have found that combined treatment with both strategies leads to a remarkable ability to reverse symptoms of MS in a mouse model of the disease. Promising agents which are being tested for their ability to promote myelin repair include the FDA approved drugs digoxin (used in heart therapy ) and miconazole (an anti-fungal drug) as well as a new approach being tested in collaboration with Clene Nanomedicine which uses the administration of gold nanocrystals.  The money we raised last year allowed our researchers to complete crucial work so they could be compete for more grant money from The National  Institutes of  Health – a new NIH grant was awarded jointly to them in July 2017.

This research has the potential to revolutionize autoimmune and allergic disease treatment since you can substitute the myelin proteins for other proteins depending on the disease being targeted. Therefore you can tolerize the immune system in response to all autoimmune diseases including type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, Celiac disease and lupus. Additionally, you can control severe allergies, including to peanut and cat dander and even eliminate organ transplant rejections. So, our great philanthropic endeavors will benefit many people we know and love that fit into these expanded categories. Dr. Miller’s company, Cour Pharmaceutical Development Company in collaboration with Takeda Pharmaceuticals began an FDA-approved phase 1 clinical trial in celiac patients who are being treated with nanoparticles containing gliadin (the major protein component of gluten) to re-establish tolerance and hopefully stop this widespread disease.
Join us and be part of our team; walk and donate

If you can’t make the trip join our group by donating online through Northwestern Univ.
Or by writing a check:
Northwestern University
Memo: CATalyzer project
c/o Bob Gregory
10 Londonderry Lane
Lincolnshire, IL 60069
The Sunday Walk has morphed into a fun weekend. Our out of town team members come in early. These include our perennial All-Star, Mike Lazarus, from Connecticut, a number of my classmates from the class of 1974 Emerson NJ high schhigh schoolhigh school, my sister Cathy and brother-in-law Tim from Charlotte and my daughter, Christine, parachuting in from Bogotá.

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