October 30, 2008

LIVESTRONG(TM) Young Adult Alliance to Host Nation’s Largest Conference on Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer

The Lance Armstrong Foundation's LIVESTRONG(TM) Young Adult Alliance will host the nation's largest conference on adolescent and young adult (AYA) cancer, "This time it's personal - Using our collective experiences to advance young adult oncology," at the Hyatt Regency in Austin, Texas, Nov. 12-14, 2008. Doug Ulman, President and CEO of the Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) and three-time cancer survivor, and Eric Shanteau, Olympic swimmer and testicular cancer survivor, will give a joint keynote address on Thurs., Nov. 13 from 9:15-10:00am. Ulman will also announce the free new web resource designed specifically to help young adults with cancer: www.livestrong.org/ayaresources.

"As a three-time cancer survivor, I know first hand the unique challenges young adults with cancer face," said Ulman. "The LIVESTRONG(TM) Young Adult Alliance is taking action to increase survival rates by uniting with leaders in the field to fight this disease head on."

Each year, nearly 70,000 young adults between the ages of 15 and 40 are diagnosed with cancer. In contrast to those younger and older, survival rates for young adults have not increased since 1975, possibly due to factors such as lack of insurance, less participation in clinical trials and delayed diagnoses. Also, young survivors often are caught between the worlds of pediatric and adult oncology. They may face a variety of unique long-term effects that will need to be addressed over their lifetimes, such as reentry into school or the workforce, insurance coverage issues, infertility as a result of treatment, neurocognitive effects or secondary malignancies.

In 2006, the Lance Armstrong Foundation with the National Cancer Institute called together scientists, government agencies, clinicians, non-profit organizations and public health professionals to establish the LIVESTRONG(TM) Young Adult Alliance to raise awareness and effect positive change for young adults with cancer. Since its founding just two years ago, this coalition has more than doubled in size to include 112 member organizations. These organizations provide expertise for the implementation of the strategies and mission of the LIVESTRONG(TM) Young Adult Alliance and bring a broad base of knowledge related to the many issues facing the young adult cancer community. For a complete list of member organizations, visit www.livestrong.org.

During the conference, the Alliance will discuss the progress and plans of its three task forces in addressing the needs of the AYA cancer community:

 --  Awareness Task Force     The Awareness Task Force is in the process of gathering research that     will be used to develop a public awareness campaign to combat two key     issues related to AYA cancer:  the delay in diagnosis of cancer in     adolescents and young adults and the lack of progress in improving     survival rates. --  Science Task Force     The Science Task Force is establishing a retrospective analysis of     existing studies of tissue and data sources.  Based on those findings,     grants will be awarded in 2009 to six tissue banks to gather and report     data on young adult tissue samples in an effort to identify the     characteristics that distinguish the unique cancer burden in the AYA     oncology patient. --  Standards of Care Task Force     The Standards of Care Task Force initiated a Models of Care survey to     identify existing AYA programs and their objectives. They will build on     this data in 2009, convening a meeting of experts to review best     practices and achieve consensus around adequate and appropriate     standards of care for young adults with cancer.      

About the Lance Armstrong Foundation

The Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) unites people through programs and experiences to empower cancer survivors to live life on their own terms and to raise awareness and funds for the fight against cancer. The LAF focuses on cancer prevention, access to screening and care, research and quality of life for cancer survivors. Founded in 1997 by cancer survivor and champion cyclist Lance Armstrong, the LAF has raised more than $260 million for the fight against cancer. Join 60 million LIVESTRONG(TM) wristband wearers and help make cancer a global priority. Unite and fight cancer at LIVESTRONG.org.

 Contact: Rae Bazzarre Public Relations Specialist (512) 279-8367 Email Contact

SOURCE: Lance Armstrong Foundation