Meso Foundation offers symposium travel grants for patients

May 29, 2008

This year the Meso Foundation has set up a travel grant program to help patients and a travel partner attend the 5th Annual International Symposium on Malignant Mesothelioma in Washington, D.C., from June 26-28.

The travel grants provide a 3-night hotel stay, domestic airfare, and reduced registration for the symposium. The application process for the travel grants is informal and the Meso Foundation encourages patients to apply.

The symposium is an important resource for patients and family members. Our law firm helped found MARF and we have supported it since its inception. We look forward to joining patients, advocates, friends, and families at this important yearly gathering of the mesothelioma community.

To obtain an application form for one of the travel grants, please call the Meso Foundation at (805) 456-7273. If you know patients or their families who might be interested in taking advantage of the travel grant program, please forward this information to them.

For more information about the symposium’s agenda, please visit the Meso Foundation’s web site by clicking here.

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International Symposium on Malignant Mesothelioma 2008

May 29, 2008

Targeting a Cure

WASHINGTON, May 28 –Leading international experts on the asbestos-related cancer, mesothelioma, will join meso patients, caregivers, loved ones and advocates to share the latest in treatment, research and clinical trials at the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation’s International Symposium on Malignant Mesothelioma, 2008, Thursday, June 26 – Saturday, June 28 at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, in Washington, D.C.

The Symposium, organized annually by the Meso Foundation, will highlight the latest advances in research and treatment for patients and caregivers, offer psychosocial support to them as well as those who have lost someone to the disease, and provide significant advocacy and volunteer opportunities for all who are intent on eradicating the vicious and terminal effects of this tragic cancer. Click here for whole story.


Friends of Warren Zevon benefit concert for asbestos disease awareness and research

November 16, 2007

December 8th Concert, Presented by Jones House Music, to Be Held at Maverick Saloon in Santa Ynez, CA – Featuring Tributes from Jordan Zevon and Other Well-Known Artists.

WHO:             Friends of Warren Zevon Featuring:

•          Jordan Zevon, Warren Zevon’s Son and ADAO National Spokesperson whose debut album is scheduled for release in early 2008 on New West Records

•          Mike Campbell and The Dirty Knobs, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame guitar player with The Heartbreakers; performed on Zevon’s Grammy winning album, the Wind

•          Kenny Edwards, co-founder of the Stone Poneys with Linda Ronstadt and Bryndle with Karla Bonoff; recorded numerous Zevon songs and performed on Zevon’s Excitable Boy album

•          Matt Cartsonis, multi-instrumentalist and composer for film, television and various commercials; performed in Zevon’s final tour

•          Phil Cody, singer and songwriter; toured with Zevon in the 1990’s

•          Plus – up and coming young artists: Crosby Loggins and Paul Cartwright and Friends

WHAT:           Tribute Concert to Warren Zevon, who was taken in 2003 by the asbestos cancer, mesothelioma. Presented by Jones House Music, the concert will include songs from a myriad of performers who played with Zevon in various settings, including for his final album, The Wind, which earned two posthumous Grammy Awards in 2004 for Best Rock Performance By A Group or Duo for “Disorder in the House” along with longtime friend Bruce Springsteen, and Best Contemporary Folk album.

Warren Zevon’s legendary career includes over 18 albums, 2 gold records, 1 platinum record, 2 Grammy awards, an honorary presidential award from NARAS, and numerous Songwriter of The Year Awards from publications like Rolling Stone Magazine. His biggest hit, “Werewolves of London” continues to make critic lists as one of the best Rock songs of all time.

Funds will be used to support the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) and the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (MARF). The occurrence of asbestos-related diseases, including mesothelioma, lung cancer and asbestosis, is growing out of control. Studies estimate that during the next decade, 100,000 victims in the United States will die of an asbestos related disease – equaling 30 deaths per day.

Tickets are $35 and are available starting November 5 at http://www.warrenzevontribute.com or at the Maverick Saloon http://www.mavericksaloon.org.

Lottery tickets will also be sold at the event to raise funds for MARF and ADAO with an exciting collection of prizes and in addition to the show, tickets for a wine tasting Meet and Greet will be available for purchase.

WHERE: Maverick Saloon
3687 Sagunto Street
Santa Ynez CA 93460

WHEN: Saturday, December 8, 2007
4:00 pm – 7:00 pm

CONTACT:    Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO)
Douglas Larkin
Office: 703-250-3590 x1245
Mobile: 202-391-1546
doug@AsbestosDiseaseAwareness.org

About Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization

Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) was founded by asbestos victims and their families in 2004. ADAO seeks to give asbestos victims a united voice to help ensure that their rights are fairly represented and protected, and raise public awareness about the dangers of asbestos exposure and the often deadly asbestos related diseases. ADAO is funded through voluntary contributions and staffed by volunteers. For more information visit http://www.asbestosdiseaseawareness.org.

Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation

The Meso Foundation is the national nonprofit dedicated to eradicating mesothelioma, the fatal cancer caused by asbestos exposure, through the funding of cutting-edge research projects across the globe. To date the Foundation has funded over $4 million dollars in research. Additionally, the Foundation provides practical support for patients and their families through education, support, and guidance offered through our website, meso specialist and nurse practitioner, and our volunteer outreach programs. To learn more visit: http://www.curemeso.org.


Friends of Warren Zevon: raising awareness of mesothelioma

November 1, 2007

By PR Newswire

SANTA BARBARA, Calif., Nov. 1 /PRNewswire/ — The Maverick Saloon will host a tribute to the late songwriter Warren Zevon on December 8, 2007 from 4 PM until 7 PM to raise research money and awareness for Mesothelioma, the disease that claimed the life of the much loved and respected troubadour. Tickets for the show are $35.00 and will be available November 5, 2007 at The Maverick Saloon or by going on the web to http://www.syvjoneshouse.com.

The proceeds from the show will go to the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation located in Santa Barbara, CA and the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization. Several well-known artists who played with Zevon will join Zevon’s son ADAO National Spokesperson Jordan Zevon at the world famous saloon to perform Warren Zevon songs. Zevon’s final album The Wind earned two posthumous Grammy Awards in 2004 for Best Rock Vocal Performance and Best Contemporary Folk album.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame guitarist Mike Campbell will be performing with his band The Dirty Knobs. Campbell, best known for his work as the lead guitar player with Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, has appeared on several Warren Zevon albums including the Grammy winning The Wind. Santa Barbara resident Kenny Edwards will also be on hand to play. Edwards, folk-rock veteran and co-founder of the Stone Poneys with Linda Ronstadt and Bryndle with Karla Bonoff, recorded several hits for Ronstadt that were written by Warren Zevon, including Carmelita, Hasten Down the Wind, and Poor Poor Pitiful Me. In addition, Edwards played on some of Warren’s albums as well, including Zevon’s best-known album Excitable Boy. Joining Campbell and Edwards will be LA based multi-instrumentalist and composer Matt Cartsonis. Cartsonis has written several scores for film, television and various commercials. Cartsonis has worked with both Zevon and Edwards. Cartsonis also has the distinction of playing with Zevon on Zevon’s final tour before he was diagnosed with mesothelioma. Finally, rounding out the roster of players who worked with Zevon is Los Angeles based singer songwriter Phil Cody who spent a significant amount of time in the 1990s touring with Zevon and shares stories and insights in the new Zevon biography “I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead” by former Zevon spouse Crystal Zevon.

Several up and coming young artists from the central coast, including Crosby Loggins, Paul Cartwright and the Nathan McEuen Band will open the show with their renditions of Zevon songs. For more information please contact Karen or Kara Jones, 805 688-7786 or go to www.syvjoneshouse.com.

SOURCE Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation

Copyright 2007 PR Newswire. All Rights Reserved


MARF mesothelioma symposium update

October 8, 2007

San Pedro, CA – October 5, 2007
From the Law Office of Roger Worthington

Yesterday began the fourth International Symposium on Malignant Mesothelioma hosted by the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (www.marf.org).

The first day of the symposium was marked by the senate’s landmark passage of the Ban Asbestos Act. Over 115 meetings were scheduled with representatives and legislators from over 25 states with approximately 120 mesothelioma patients, researchers, families, and advocates who have been affected by asbestos disease. The volunteers “stormed” Capitol Hill and were present when Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA) and Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) announced the long-awaited passing of this crucial legislation.

This morning, the medical portion of the symposium began with Dr. Courtney Broaddus’s excellent analogy explaining the creation of a mesothelioma. Likening the evolution of the cancerous cell to a speeding, out of control automobile with an unending tank of gas and no way of breaking or slowing down, all attendees were left with a gripping understanding of mesothelioma tumors and how they work. Dr. Broaddus works at the Lung Biology Center at the University of California at San Francisco.

Following Dr. Broaddus was Dr. Harvey Pass of the New York University Cancer Center. Dr. Pass discussed the latest research and the discovery and validation of potential genomic-based biomarkers for asbestos-related neoplasms.

As the Chairman of the Science Advisory Board of MARF, Dr. Pass addressed the mesothelioma patients in the audience as the “shareholders of MARF” whom he was here to present the latest “deliverables.”

Dr. Pass detailed the latest efforts regarding early detection for mesothelioma. He went into detail about the studies performed on biomarkers in the serum and plasma of mesothelioma patients and cohorts who have been exposed to asbestos, including biomarkers such as Osteopontin,. According to Dr. Pass, “It is important to determine what proteins are in the tissue of a mesothelioma patient that make the tumor different.”

Dr. Pass stressed the need for other clinics, hospitals, and laboratories to work together and share data. “We cannot discover in isolation. All the centers have to work together and the passing of the bill yesterday will work for all of us!”

r. Lee Krug and Dr. John Chabot followed Dr. Pass to the podium to discuss the current multi-modal treatment for pleural and peritoneal mesothelioma. Dr. Krug, from the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, compared the two types of surgeries for pleural mesothelioma, the extra-pleural pneumonectomy (EPP) and the pleurectomy with decortication (P/D). He also talked about the survival rates of the surgeries in conjunction with chemotherapy and radiation as well as neoadjuvant chemotherapy. However, most of his discussion centered on the EPP with chemotherapy/radiation. In summary, the median survival rate of patients treated with EPP and chemo/radiation was 13 months.

Dr. Chabot, of the Columbia University Medical Center in New York, talked about his preferred treatment for peritoneal mesothelioma, which includes a laparotomy with debulking followed by intraperitoneal chemotherapy and then a second laparotomy with definitive resection and heated intraperitoneal chemotherapy.

Completing the morning session was Dr. Hedy Kindler of the University of Chicago and Mary Hesdorffer, medical liaison of MARF, discussing the benefits and side effects of Alimta used in conjunction with Cisplatin and/or Carboplatin. Dr. Kindler went into detail about how an oncologist best determines the chemotherapy for a mesothelioma patient and how to administer the chemotherapy. She focused on Alimta, which is the only FDA- approved chemotherapeutic agent for mesothelioma. She talked about the ongoing clinical trials using Alimta alone (median survival rate of 10 months) or with Cisplatin (survival rate of 12 months) or with Cisplatin alone (survival rate of 9 months).

Ms. Hesdorffer went into detail on how best to prepare and address any side effects from the drugs used in any of these combinations.


Historic asbestos ban legislation passed by U.S. Senate

October 8, 2007

WASHINGTON, Oct. 4 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Asbestos in the U.S. maybe breathing its last gasps, as the Senate today passed the Ban Asbestos inAmerica Act. Passage in the House is expected to be imminent. Championed by Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) for the past six years, this legislation would finally ban asbestos, invest federal funding in development of effective treatment for asbestos’ most deadly cancer, mesothelioma (meso), and other asbestos-related diseases, and launch a public education campaign. With bipartisan support provided by Senator Johnny Isakson (R-GA), the bill was approved unanimously by the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, chaired by Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), on August 2, and passed by the full Senate late this afternoon.

Not coincidentally, The International Symposium on Malignant Mesothelioma, sponsored by the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (Meso Foundation), began today in Washington, D.C. One hundred and twenty Meso Foundation advocates from 26 states converged on the Capitol to meet individually with their Senators and Congressional representatives, educate them about the tragic toll of meso, urge them to finally ban asbestos, and most importantly ask Congress to invest the federal research funding necessary to develop effective treatments for meso. The advocates included patients, family members, individuals who had lost a loved one to meso, and a handful of expert meso researchers and clinicians. In comments to the group immediately following the legislation’s passage in the Senate, Senator Murray thanked the Meso Foundation for its work, and credited the advocates for their key role in the passage of this historic legislation.

“Today marks the first time this constituency is on the steps of Capitol Hill as an entire community,” said Chris Hahn, Executive Director of The Meso Foundation. “We believe the human tragedy of mesothelioma must be addressed urgently.”

Asbestos is so deadly that there is no known safe level of exposure. Even a tiny bit of fiber can cause disease. Studies show that asbestos exposure kills up to 10,000 Americans each year.

Those at risk include U.S. military personnel, shipyard workers, brake mechanics, roofers, cement workers, demolition workers, homeowners doing renovations, spouses and children of workers…the list goes on and on. Exposure to asbestos can cause a variety of cancers, the most deadly being mesothelioma. Asbestos diseases usually do not manifest themselves until decades after a person is exposed to asbestos fibers, but then the diseases develop rapidly. Most patients with mesothelioma die within two years of being diagnosed.

“Asbestos is deadly, it’s devastating families and communities, and every day that we wait to ban it, we’re sentencing more Americans to an early and avoidable death,” explains Senator Patty Murray (D-WA).

The Symposium continues this evening, as more than 200 participants are expected to join in a moving Tribute Ceremony and Candlelight Vigil on the West Lawn at the Steps of the Capitol, featuring symposium panelists and participants, including Susan Vento, whose late husband, Congressman Bruce Vento (D-MN), lost the battle against pleural mesothelioma seven years ago. Friday, October 5th and Saturday, October 6th, the Symposium continues in the Westin City Center, 1400 M. Street, NW, in Washington, D.C., with meso scientific presentations, information and support for meso patients and family members, and further advocacy to help secure ultimate passage of the bill.

On the House side, Congresswoman Betty McCollum (D-MN) has introduced the Bruce Vento Ban Asbestos and Prevent Mesothelioma Act of 2007 (H.R. 3339), to ban asbestos in the United States and expand prevention, research, and treatment for asbestos-related diseases, including mesothelioma.

“It’s long past time that our country banned asbestos,” McCollum said. “After decades of widespread and unknowing exposure to this deadly substance, Americans should be able to rest assured that they are no longer at risk of having their lives cut short by asbestos exposure.”

Meso Foundation Executive Director Chris Hahn explains the importance of the fact that the legislation not only bans asbestos but provides the beginnings of an investment in medical research for meso. “Meso’s latency is as long as 50 years, so today, millions of Americans who were exposed in the past five decades are at risk. And it is inevitable, given today’s
current levels of asbestos exposure, that death from mesothelioma will continue for decades. So alongside the ban, there needs to be much greater funding for research and treatment of this aggressive disease.”

Former Minnesota Congressman Bruce Vento died in 2000 from mesothelioma, likely caused by minimal contact with asbestos while working in factories as a young man. Vento represented Minnesota’s Fourth District from 1977 to 2000.

“Bruce would be so proud to know that his friend and successor is leading the way in the House for passage of a bill that will ban asbestos, increase public awareness of the very real risks related to asbestos and fund critically needed medical research for mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases,” said Sue Vento, wife of the late Congressman. “Rep. McCollum’s legislation is definitely needed and is much appreciated by those who have experienced the devastation of mesothelioma and other diseases caused by asbestos.”

The International Symposium on Malignant Mesothelioma will feature medical panelists and speakers: Hon. Patty Murray, United States Senator; Hon. Betty McCollum, United States Congresswoman; Chris Hahn, Executive Director, Meso Foundation; Susan Vento, Board of Directors, Meso Foundation; Mary Beth Buchholz, Vice President, Government Affairs, BatesNeimand; Courtney Broaddus, MD, University of California, San Francisco; Harvey Pass, MD, New York University Comprehensive Cancer Center; Lee Krug, MD, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center; John Chabot, MD, Columbia University Medical Center; Hedy Kindler, MD, University of Chicago; Mary Hesdorffer, NP, Medical Liaison, Meso Foundation; Daniel Sterman, MD, University of Pennsylvania Medical Center; Raffit Hassan, MD, National Cancer Institute. For more information or to arrange interviews with International Symposium on Malignant Mesothelioma participants, please contact Chris Hahn at (805) 252-8955 or Paul Marcone at (571) 338-2346 or paul@paulmarconellc.com.

Speakers will be available for photo ops and interviews. Program overview can be found at: http://www.marf.org/Documents/Sym07V2.pdf

SOURCE Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation


Make plans to attend the International Mesothelioma Symposium, Oct. 4-6, Washington, D.C.

September 24, 2007

Support the International Mesothelioma Symposium

San Pedro, CA – Aug. 6, 2007 – What happens when you put mesothelioma patients, researchers, advocates, doctors, legislators, and the media all in one place? You get the International Mesothelioma Symposium in Washington, D.C.

Sponsored by the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation, this is the single most important event for people affected by and involved with mesothelioma. This extraordinary three-day event will include:

Day 1 – Advocacy
Meet your senators and congressmen/women to tell your story and urge them to support research. Candlelight vigil at the Capitol that evening.

Day 2 – Science
Leading physicians and scientists will discuss the latest research, treatments, and clinical trials.

Day 3 – Community
Connect with other patients, family members, and advocates who are committed to curing mesothelioma.
MARF is an extraordinarily diverse organization supported by patients, their families, physicians, law firms, asbestos companies, and advocates. You can help develop better treatment, prevention, and a cure by donating to MARF or by signing up to attend the symposium. The Law Firm of Roger G. Worthington is proud to be a Gold Sponsor of this important international event.