Cancer Research Supporters from the Tri-State Area Raise $700,000 at Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) Laugh for Life Comedy Event

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Fran Drescher, actress, comedian, producer and President and Visionary of Cancer Schmancer Movement, honored with MMRF Award

Norwalk, CT — May 7, 2014

On May 6, 2014, more than 625 tri-state area business, healthcare and community leaders attended the 12th Annual Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) Laugh for Life: New York and raised $700,000 to benefit innovative MMRF approaches to extend patients’ lives and accelerate new treatments to lead to a cure for multiple myeloma, a fatal blood cancer.

The MMRF Laugh for Life event provides us the opportunity to honor all who are united in our mission to cure myeloma, but especially the courage of patients, their families and friends,” said Walter M. Capone, President of the MMRF. “Thanks to those who inspire and support events like ‘Laugh,’ we are able to accelerate new and even more effective therapies for patients and advance cutting-edge research through our partnerships with the best scientists, researchers and clinicians in institutions and companies worldwide.”

The MMRF was proud to honor Fran Drescher, actress, comedian, producer and President and Visionary of Cancer Schmancer Movement, with the Carol Goldschein Spirit of Hope Award presented by Celgene Corporation. This award is presented annually to a patient, caregiver or individual who exemplifies the true spirit of hope – one who generously advocates for the benefit of others, works tirelessly to help cancer patients, and inspires hope through their perseverance. Drescher’s cousin Aviva Drescher, TV personality, author and philanthropist, accepted the award on her behalf. Susie Essman, stand-up comedian, actress, writer, television producer, and voice artist, served as headliner for the comedy event. Michael Reinert, Partner at Fox Rothschild LLP and a member of the MMRF Board of Directors, served as the evening’s Master of Ceremonies.

“It’s a huge privilege to be honored by the MMRF, an organization that has had an amazing impact in advancing the field of myeloma research,” said Drescher. “No organization is doing more to shape the future of cancer research and directly benefiting the lives of so many patients.”

The MMRF is a leading cancer research foundation that is developing new models and innovative means for accelerating the next generation of myeloma treatments as quickly as possible. The organization is currently spearheading the world's first and only open access data platform in multiple myeloma, which will empower patients with information to make decisions about their individual medical choices and enable researchers and others to make faster treatment discoveries for this incurable blood cancer.

“The MMRF is known for bringing great researchers, scientists and the multiple myeloma community together for a common cause, developing a plan to achieve that cause, and staying with it until the goal is achieved,” said Joel Beetsch, Vice President of Global Patient Advocacy at Celgene Corporation. “Celgene is proud to partner with the MMRF on behalf of the many, many patients and families it serves.”

Upcoming MMRF events in the tri-state area include the MMRF Race for Research: Tri-State 5K Walk/Run on June 8, 2014 in New Canaan, CT and the MMRF Fall Gala on November 8, 2014 in Greenwich, CT. For more information on MMRF events, please visit:

About Multiple Myeloma
Multiple myeloma is a cancer of the plasma cell. It is the second most common blood cancer. An estimated 24,050 adults (13,500 men and 10,550 women) in the United States will be diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2014 and an estimated 11,090 people are predicted to die from the disease. The five-year survival rate for multiple myeloma is approximately 43%, versus 28% in 1998.

About the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF)
The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) was established in 1998 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization by twin sisters Karen Andrews and Kathy Giusti, soon after Kathy's diagnosis with multiple myeloma. The mission of the MMRF is to relentlessly pursue innovative means that accelerate the development of next-generation multiple myeloma treatments to extend the lives of patients and lead to a cure. As the world's number-one private funder of multiple myeloma research, the MMRF has raised $250 million since its inception and directs 90% of total budget to research and related programming. As a result, the MMRF has been awarded Charity Navigator’s coveted four-star rating for 11 consecutive years, the highest designation for outstanding fiscal responsibility and exceptional efficiency. For more information about the MMRF, please visit:

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