Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation Partners with Ava’s Army to Fund Pediatric Leukemia Research

Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation

WYNNEWOOD, PA — Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF) has announced a new partnership with Nebraska-based Ava’s Army to co-fund an ALSF Crazy 8 Grant. This collaboration will support Dr. Leonard Zon of Boston Children’s Hospital in his efforts to develop safer and more effective treatments for acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).

Ava’s Army, founded by Amanda Reinert in 2019 after her daughter Ava’s battle with leukemia, shares ALSF’s mission to advance treatment for childhood cancers. Ava endured severe side effects from her treatment, including neuropathy and dental issues, alongside long-term risks of secondary cancers. Driven by the need for improved therapies that have remained unchanged for two decades, Ava’s Army focuses on funding innovative pediatric leukemia research.

ALSF launched the Crazy 8 Initiative in 2018 to create roadmaps toward cures for hard-to-treat childhood cancers. This initiative funds large-scale collaborative research projects with grants ranging from $1-5 million. Initially committing $25 million, ALSF funded six projects and increased the commitment to $50 million in 2022 to support at least 10 groundbreaking projects. The Crazy 8 Initiative aims to tackle the toughest challenges in pediatric cancer research by connecting researchers globally.

“We are thrilled to join ALSF in funding Dr. Zon’s Crazy 8 Project. Our mission is to support research that finds more effective treatments for childhood cancer. No child should endure the battles and long-term effects these kids face. Like ALSF, we are committed to continuing this fight,” said Amanda Reinert, founder of Ava’s Army.

Ava’s Army has donated $70,000 to help fund Dr. Zon’s project, “Barcoding Pediatric Leukemia for Therapeutic Purposes.” Dr. Zon’s team, co-led by Dr. Ross Levine, seeks to trace leukemia back to its origin cells and find targeted therapies to cure children who are currently incurable.

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Jay Scott, Co-Executive Director of ALSF, expressed gratitude for the partnership. “We are grateful for Ava’s Army’s partnership and support of the Crazy 8 Initiative. Together, we are making strides toward finding more effective treatments and cures for childhood cancers. Collaborative efforts like this are essential to accelerating progress and improving outcomes for children everywhere.”

This partnership marks a significant step in the fight against pediatric leukemia, bringing together resources and expertise to drive forward the search for better treatments.

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