On June 1st twelve experts on myelofibrosis, myeloproliferative neoplasms and fibrosis gathered around a table in a classroom at Northwestern University in Chicago. They were there to debate the merits of proposals received by the MPN Research Foundation and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society for their MF Challenge initiative. The spirited discussion – lasting around 6 hours – ended with the proposals scored and ranked.
Reviewers were instructed to consider not only the scientific merit of the proposal, but also whether it was a novel approach to stopping or reversing fibrosis. Both organizations are motivated to support high quality projects that would not otherwise be pursued by bigger funding groups such as NIH.
We will be announcing the grant recipients in July. Between now and July we will be meeting with the scientific advisory panels from both organizations – which include some patients – to decide which proposals have the right mix of qualities to go after myelofibrosis.