Helping Families Through the Liposarcoma Genome Project

March 2, 2015

Liposarcoma is rare – less than 1% of all cancers. So rare, that approximately 375,000 people have it worldwide. Doesn’t seem like many? Well, think about this: if all liposarcoma patients made up a city in the US it would be in the top 50 largest cities in America.

So why has zero comprehensive research been done, and what are we going to do about it?

With elbow grease and good old-fashioned hard science, the LGP’s goal is to sequence liposarcoma’s genome, exome, you name it – or plainly, unravel liposarcoma and understand how it works.

Unraveling a rare cancer like liposarcoma is easier than sequencing a common cancer and it gives doctors insight into how common cancers work, the ones likely to affect you. LGP research will shed light on new treatments and cures for liposarcoma and a whole host of more prevalent cancers.

It’s time to take action and start researching rare diseases like liposarcoma, because a cure for one can be a cure for all.


One Family’s Story

In 1998 Spencer Dick collapsed on his hotel floor while away on business. This was just the beginning of a challenging odyssey that eventually led to a diagnosis of stage four liposarcoma, an incredibly rare soft tissue cancer.

Treatment options were unknown. Spencer and his wife Mary, and their two young children, Nathaniel and Elizabeth, uprooted from Portland, OR to the premier sarcoma treatment center – Massachusetts General Hospital.

After countless surgeries, thousands of stitches, many bouts of chemotherapy, radiation treatments, proton therapies, physical therapies, tens of feet of removed gut, and a kidney later, Spencer, is still giving them hell.

With the help of Mass General, the Dick family has beaten remarkable odds for 17 years. However, with the time span between Spencer’s hospital visits becoming shorter, coupled with the fact that few liposarcoma treatments have been proven to show any efficacy, they are asking that you help support the Liposarcoma Genome Project, a comprehensive research initiative to find a cure.

With your support, Drs. John Mullen, Edwin Choy, Greg Cote, G. Petur Nielsen and Brad Bernstein at the Mass General Cancer Center will be able to learn more about the genetic drivers of liposarcoma, and design effective new treatment options for patients – 375,000 in total. Understanding how rare diseases like liposarcoma work opens up pathways to finding cures for more common cancers. Take action alongside the Dick family and support liposarcoma research because a cure for one can be a cure for all.

What can you do to help?

Donate or sign-up TODAY, to support the Liposarcoma Genome Project at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center. Help us match the $500,000 challenge grant that has been pledged. We have until December 31st 2015!

Click here to learn more.

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