The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Hairy Cell Leukemia Foundation have announced a five-year, $10 million partnership in support of research on hairy cell leukemia (HCL), a rare hematological malignancy that infiltrates the blood, spleen, bone marrow, and other organs.
As part of the collaboration, the two organizations will team up on a grants program, HCL2025, aimed at building a more comprehensive understanding of HCL, developing better therapies, and optimizing outcomes for patients. First described in the late 1950s, the disease is named for the thin, hair-like projections found on the surface of abnormal white blood cancer cells that compromise the production of normal blood cells. While the disease is not considered curable, patients generally respond well to cytotoxic chemotherapy and can experience remissions of up to fifteen years or longer.
"While there has been promising progress recently in treating HCL, with much of the work supported by LLS and HCLF funding, there remains significant unmet need because patients will relapse and there is still no cure," said LLS chief scientific officer Lee Greenberger. "Collaboration is critical to driving forward our research agenda, and we are grateful to have the partnership of the HCLF in supporting leading edge research that will ultimately improve outcomes for more patients with HCL."