As seen in Footwear News – August 15, 2016
When it comes to combatting cancer, leading-edge research efforts create strong allies. Like stylish high heels next to scruffy cowboy boots, the Fashion Footwear Association of New York and the John Wayne Cancer Institute and its affiliated Margie Petersen Breast Center at Providence St. John’s Heath Center in Santa Monica have fought side-by-side for more than a decade to stomp out the dreaded disease.
“FFANY Shoes on Sale” has funneled more member donations to Wayne/Petersen—more than $7 million—than to any other cancer research center. Revolutionary technology to examine lymph nodes to check on the spread of cancer cells was developed at Wayne, where the Petersen provides a wide variety of care to 2,500 annual patients.
“The power of our brands and brains together will make a difference,” said donor Robert Goldman, Co-Founder & CEO of Chinese Laundry. “I believe‘FFANY Shoes on Sale’ and all the donations made over the years, have helped the doctors and researchers make great strides to finding a cure We all have causes that are near and dear to our heart, but when we work together we can see change happen. How could we not? This is a disease that impacts so many of friends and family. To help them, in any way, is our duty and our privilege to be able to donate and participate in events like this.”
“John Wayne has a long history of discovery in the cancer research,” said Dr. Rebecca Crane-Okada, director of Breast Cancer Navigation at Petersen and professor of oncology at the 35-year-old Wayne. “Much of that was the result of innovative and cutting-edge work that FFANY was instrumental in initiating. Because FFANY funded early work with seed money that led to studies that gained foundation funding that would not have been dedicated to seemingly risky efforts. FFANY is noted for taking chances.”
One investigation at the Wayne/Petersen alliance studied microbes on the breast surface. “No one wanted to fund it,” said Dr. Delphine Lee, director of the Dirks/Dougherty Lab at Wayne/Petersen. “FFANY stepped in. Because of FFANY, we were able to describe human breast microbiomes in women with breast cancer.”
Among the major ongoing studies at Petersen that FFANY funding initiated is the use of bacteria to fight breast cancer. Lee said that this particular study indicates that bacteria is present more in healthy breast tissue more than in cancerous breast tissue, and the results could help advance immunization against the disease.
“Supporting ‘FFANY Shoes on Sale’ goes back to my wife, Carol, of 50-plus years and my two daughters, Alex and Lauren,” said Goldman, emphasizing that we all want to keep our loved ones safe. “I sleep better knowing there’s a cure on the horizon. I also take comfort knowing that we’re working to make aggressive improvements in treatment, diagnosis, and care for patients that are currently battling the disease.”