Atlanta, GA – Cancer Kicks announced making a $33,750 grant to The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center to help elucidate the potential role for Pembrolizumab, a novel immunotherapy drug, in fighting cholangiocarcinoma.

The pharmaceutical company Merck will fund the clinical trial, but Cancer Kicks’ grant will go specifically to help cover the costs of the scientific research at M.D. Anderson that will lay the necessary groundwork before the clinical study is launched.

Dr. Rachna Shroff, one of M.D. Anderson’s cholangiocarcinoma specialists, will be leading the clinical trial. She praised Cancer Kicks for its special gift. “It is a pivotal and exciting time in cholangiocarcinoma research,” said Dr. Shroff. “My hope is that Cancer Kicks will be able to say that they played a part in one day making cholangiocarcinoma a thing of the past. We thank you for your generosity and the faith you have placed in us,” Dr. Shroff concluded.

Cancer Kicks was launched just 18 months ago with its mission to bring awareness of rare cancers, like Bile Duct Cancer, while funding research to “kick” these cancers and financially assisting the individuals and families affected by cancer.

President of Cancer Kicks, Joe Pettit, was excited about the prospect of helping fund research that utilizes a cutting-edge immunotherapy drug like Pembrolizumab.

“Pembrolizumab has been used successfully in breast, brain and other cancers, so we are hopeful that it will help tackle rarer cancers like Bile Duct Cancer,” said Mr. Pettit.

Cholangiocarcinoma, also known as bile duct cancer, is a form of cancer that originates in the bile ducts. Bile ducts drain bile from the liver into the small intestine. According to the American Cancer Society, approximately 2000-3000 people worldwide are diagnosed with cholangiocarcinoma each year.

Recently, former President Jimmy Carter amazed the world when he announced that he was cancer-free after using Pembrolizumab as a part of his treatment to fight Stage 4 Melanoma.

The leading Health Care publication – described Pembrolizumab as “a new type of cancer drug that unleashes the body’s immune system to attack tumor cells. [President] Carter announced in August that he had an aggressive form of melanoma skin cancer, and that tumors had spread into his liver and brain. He received surgery, radiation, and multiple doses of [Pembrolizumab]. And on Dec. 6, he said that all signs of cancer were gone.”

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