skip to Main Content

Check Presentation and Tour VAI

On November 14, 2022, the Michelle Marie Lunn Hope Foundation donated $36,000 to the Van Andel Institute for blood cancer research. $15,000 went towards the purchase of a -80 degree C freezer. The freezer will store rare samples & antibodies and perhaps coordinate logistics with the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) for local fresh-vs-frozen plasma comparisons. It could have a global impact if they show that marrow aspirates are neither necessary nor sufficient to predict the outcome of treatment or transplant in AML, ALL, or MM. The highest-risk cases could then be moved to adaptive clinical trials using blood plasma as a dual readout for response and complications, which is one of Dr. Triches’ long-term goals for the standard of care. Instead of a bone marrow aspirate (or biopsy) at the beginning of treatment (Induction) then, again 28 days later, each week blood sample would be used to determine how well the treatment is working and if adjustments would improve the outcome. Ideally, two biopsies could become five blood tests.

While we were there Dr. Tim Triche (one of my golf partners at our outing), Lauren Harmon, B.S. and Nathaniel Buteyn, Ph.D. provided a brief overview of the work and this project. Sheryl Alberta provided a tour of the Advanced Technology Lab at Spectrum Health. It is great to have the research directly connected to the outcomes. Ulrich Duffer, MD, also had lunch with us. His primary specialty is pediatric blood and marrow transplant. There are literally bridges between these facilities, and the opportunity to coordinate is tremendous.

Back To Top