08 Nov 2017

HudsonAlpha hosts 2017 Tie the Ribbons luncheon

Tie the Ribbons continues to be sold-out event

Rick Myers, PhD

HudsonAlpha hosted the ninth annual Tie the Ribbons luncheon Nov. 8 at the Von Braun Center to a crowd of 1,300. Attendees heard an update on HudsonAlpha’s breast and ovarian cancer research and announcement about the Information is Power initiative.

Tie the Ribbons supports the Breakthrough Breast and Ovarian Cancer Research Team, a group of scientists committed to the goal of using genomic science and HudsonAlpha’s state-of-the-art technology to make new discoveries in breast and ovarian cancers.

“It takes a team to do anything, especially in this field. Our scientists, utilizing the technologies available on genomics, are poised to make advances such as early detection and whether you are going to respond to a drug or not,” said Rick Myers, PhD, HudsonAlpha president and science director.

Joy McDaniel, PhD

Joy Agee McDaniel, PhD, a postdoc at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, was the special guest speaker at Tie the Ribbons. Before joining MD Anderson, McDaniel was a graduate assistant trainee in the Myers lab at HudsonAlpha where she, and collaborators, discovered a new gene signature regulated by a specific transcription factor – proteins that switch genes on and off – that is involved in regulating processes active in triple negative breast cancer.

“My research is not only important to me because of my personal connection to breast cancer,” McDaniel said, “but also to men and women around the world because learning more about the basic biology of triple negative breast cancer will put us one step closer to developing better therapies and saving lives.”

The event also paid special tribute to Kimberly Strong, PhD, a HudsonAlpha faculty investigator who lost her battle to breast cancer in March of this year. She courageously shared her own struggle with cancer at HudsonAlpha’s annual Tie the Ribbons luncheon in 2015 and 2016. She also led the Information is Power initiative. Click here to watch the video.

Howard Jacob, PhD

Redstone Federal Credit Union (RFCU) will generously sponsor the Information is Power initiative for another year. Information is Power, a collaboration between HudsonAlpha and Kailos Genetics, offers free and reduced cost genetic cancer risk testing for men and women in North Alabama.

Today through November 7, 2018, free testing will be available to women and men 28 to 32 years of age who reside in Madison, Jackson, Limestone, Marshall or Morgan County. If you do not fall within that age range, the test is available at a discounted price for individuals 19 and older living in those counties. To learn more and order a test, visit hudsonalpha.org/information-is-power.

In addition, select blind draw pieces from jewelry designer Kendra Scott were available to attendees for a $50 donation to the HudsonAlpha Foundation to benefit breast and ovarian cancer research at HudsonAlpha.

To support HudsonAlpha’s Breakthrough Breast and Ovarian Cancer team, visit hudsonalpha.org/breakthrough-breast-cancer.

Breast and ovarian cancer patients share their stories in this Tie the Ribbons video