The Masonic Medical Research Institute Receives $25,000 for Lupus Research

With the recruitment of Dr. Maria Kontaridis, Executive Director and Gordon K. Moe Professor and Chair of the Biomedical Research and Translational Medicine at Masonic Medical Research Institute, in 2018, research in autoimmunity, specifically focusing on Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (lupus) became a priority. Little did they know, located only 23 miles away from MMRI in Verona, an all-volunteer national patient advocacy organization called Lupus and Allied Diseases Association (LADA) was busy working to raise funds to support research on this disease. Thanks to news of Dr. Kontaridis ’recent receipt of the Lupus Impact Award from the Department of Defense, MMRI and LADA connected. LADA President and CEO, Kathleen Arntsen, and Dr. Kontaridis had met years prior to this, at a lupus research conference in New York City. “It is amazing to see that after all these years, and coming to work for MMRI here in central New York, that Kathleen and I reconnected. This is a wonderful opportunity for all of us, working together in our shared goal to improve the lives of those living with lupus,” said Dr. Kontaridis.


MMRI will be hosting the Lupus and Allied Diseases Association to preview the ongoing research efforts and to get a personalized tour of the facility. Additionally, at the recently held Annual Lupus Charity Golf Classic event in August, MMRI was honored to be the proud recipient of a $25,000 award for the continuation of their lupus research. “We were excited to learn about the innovative research that Dr. Kontaridis and the MMRI team are doing regarding lupus, especially since we have been part of the DOD Lupus Research Program since its inception,” said Kathleen Arntsen, “but more importantly because we were proud supporters of lupus research from 1990-2000 at MMRI providing $40,000 in research funds. We are thrilled that lupus research has returned to Utica and hope that MMRI’s dedication and expertise will benefit people with lupus and allied diseases and look forward to the promising results generated from our continued collaboration.”

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