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Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation Announces 2022 Innovation Grant Recipients

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Balay Cynwyd, PA (February 7, 2023) Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF), a nonprofit committed to finding cures for all childhood cancer, has awarded 9 Innovation Grants to leading oncologists across the country. Over the course of two years, researchers receive $250,000 of funding to pursue unique projects investigating new and safer treatments for pediatric cancer.

“ALSF has been instrumental in advancing basic and translational research to identify new therapies for children with cancer,” said Linda Resar, MD of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “Because childhood cancers are under-represented in federally funded grants, ALSF has been critical for continued progress in pediatric cancer research and therapy.”

Innovation Grant recipients will conduct their research at 9 top institutions across the U.S. The projects will study various types of childhood cancers. A list of the scientists receiving grants, their institutions, co-investigators and the titles of their projects is included below.

“The Innovation Grant encourages experienced researchers to push for breakthroughs in childhood cancers, ultimately leading to new clinical interventions,” said Liz Scott, Alex’s Mom/Co-Executive Director of ALSF. “Each year, the recipients continue to show great promise moving us toward desperately needed cures, with important findings along the way.” 

The Innovation Grant, one of the first grants awarded by ALSF since its founding, was created to provide critical and significant seed funding for experienced researchers with novel and promising approaches to finding the causes and cures for childhood cancers. Research funded by ALSF has been featured in The New England Journal of Medicine, Blood, Journal of Clinical Oncology, Molecular Therapy, AACR Journal, Oncogene, Nature and more. In addition to Innovation Grants, ALSF funds several other grant categories to researchers on the front lines of the childhood cancer fight. For more information, visit: ALSFgrants.org.

2022 Innovation Grant Recipients

Hui Feng, MD, PhD ­- Boston University
Targeting CKLF as an Immunotherapeutic Approach to Treat MYCN-driven High-risk Neuroblastoma

James Palis, MD ­- University of Rochester
Co-Investigator: Laurie Steiner, MD
Developmental Origins of Leukemia in Down Syndrome 

Kelly Bailey, MD, PhD - University of Pittsburgh
Impact of STAG2 Loss on DNA Damage and Immunobiology in Ewing Sarcoma

Linda Resar, MD - Johns Hopkins University - School of Medicine
Developing Novel Transcription Factor PROTACs to Disrupt the HMGA1 Epigenome in Relapsed Leukemia

Nabeel Bardeesy, PhD - Massachusetts General Hospital
Molecular Circuitry of Fibrolamellar Carcinoma

Paul Sondel, MD, PhD - University of Wisconsin – Madison
Epigenetic Enhancement of MHCI to Augment Neuroblastoma Immunotherapy

Prabhani Atukorale, PhD - University of Massachusetts Amherst Foundation
Co-Investigator: Jason Shohet, MD, PhD
Targeted Nanoparticle-mediated “cold”-to-“hot” Reprogramming of the Tumor Microenvironment of High-risk Neuroblastoma

Rani George, MD, PhD - Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Inhibition of Translation Initiation as a Novel Therapeutic Strategy Against MYCN-amplified Neuroblastoma

Stephen Gottschalk, MD - St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
Isoform-specific TNC-redirected T Cell Therapy for DIPG


About Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation

Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF) emerged from the front yard lemonade stand of 4-year-old Alexandra “Alex” Scott, who was fighting cancer and wanted to raise money to find cures for all children with cancer. Her spirit and determination inspired others to support her cause, and when she passed away at the age of 8, she had raised $1 million. Since then, the Foundation bearing her name has evolved into a national fundraising movement. Today, ALSF is one of the leading funders of pediatric cancer research in the U.S. and Canada having raised more than $250 million so far, funding over 1,000 research projects and providing programs to families affected by childhood cancer.