MRF Blog

The First Question

August 9, 2011 | Categories: Patient Stories

Over the years I have had the privilege to know many, many people fighting cancer.  Young and old, male and female.  We tend to think cancer ennobles someone—makes them more than they were, somehow heroic simply by virtue of their suffering.  That is not the reality, though.  Cancer patients are just like you and me.  They may be full of hope or be mad as hell at their situation.    They are ordinary people facing extraordinary circumstances, and doing so the very best they can.

What's Next: 
Learn More About Melanoma

Melanoma Patient Profile

August 2, 2011 | Categories: Patient Stories

What does a melanoma patient look like?  She looks like Diane, who posts on MPIP.org as “Dian in Spokane.”  Diane was first diagnosed years ago, and fought her melanoma with a vengeance.  She lived disease free for years, but has since had an recurrence.  But melanoma is what Diane has, it is not what she is

What's Next: 

Learn More About Melanoma

Making a Difference

July 15, 2011 | Categories: Prevention

Thanks to "guest blogger" Mary Mendoza for the following.  Mary is National Director of Volunteer Services for MRF.

Practice What you Preach

June 27, 2011 | Categories: Prevention

Part of what makes my work for the Melanoma Research Foundation is my family history of melanoma.  Both my mother and her twin brother were diagnosed with early stage melanoma when they were about the age I am now.  This means I am at higher risk than the ordinary person—perhaps by a factor of 8.

Left Armed Bandit

June 17, 2011 | Categories: Prevention

Today we heard that drivers in the United States have more skin cancer on their left arm than on their right.  This news came just after a big media push from the FDA touting their new guidelines for sunscreen

Mother and Child

June 16, 2011 | Categories: Treatment

I just got off the phone with a young woman I met earlier this year who is battling Stage IV melanoma.  During the call she told me, “I have a 2 year old and I worry that I won’t live long enough for my child to remember me.”

Competition and Collaboration

June 1, 2011 | Categories: Research

In their most honest moments, the best and brightest scientific researchers agree that competition is good.  When researchers have to apply for limited funds they sharpen their thinking and put their best science forward.  This is why MRF has, from the beginning of our grant program, engaged in a competitive application process.  Researchers who seek funding must present a proposal that is reviewed by experts in the particular area being addressed by that proposal.  Only about one request in six is funded, and this competition for funds has always resulted in very, very

Alphabet Soup

May 16, 2011 | Categories: Treatment

I had dinner last night with two melanoma researchers.  One is an M.D.; the other has an M.D and a Ph.D.  The discussion quickly moved to new studies and treatments for melanoma, and the conversation became heavily peppered with acronyms.  BRAF, NRAS, c-KIT, PTEN, AKT, m-TOR. 

Watchwords

May 14, 2011 | Categories: Patient Stories, Treatment

Today’s melanoma symposium in Seattle featured a panel of patients telling their stories.    Some have been fighting melanoma for years.  One was recently diagnosed.  They spoke of their treatments - surgeries, radiation, various drugs – and their side effects.

Angels Unaware

May 10, 2011 | Categories: Patient Stories

In some ways cancer patients are just people.  Some are mean, some are nice.  Some are caring, some are indifferent.  Having said that, cancer, like most major sources of stress, tends to amplify these characteristics. 

Last night I had the opportunity to spend some time with one of those people who persists in being giving, warm, and generous despite—or because of—their cancer.

Pages