4 Reasons to donate to ACGT on #GivingTuesday

Oct 18, 2023
Devin Golden

Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy (ACGT) has already achieved extraordinary feats in advancing cancer research and new treatments. With the imperative help of loyal donors, our team has raised millions of dollars to fund research and move forward therapies proving curative for certain patients with blood cancer.

Now, on Giving Tuesday 2023, which is Tuesday, Nov. 28, we ask you to help us make more progress. Your gift can help change the outlook of cancer treatment and survival.

Each year, non-profit organizations team with the general public to raise money for a global act of kindness toward a long list of activist movements. This annual global generosity movement is called “Giving Tuesday,” the day when donating to non-profit organizations is most amplified.

E. Antonio Chiocca, MD, PhD, explains how a donation to ACGT supports and advances “the medicines of tomorrow that could cure cancer.”

One of the most powerful Giving Tuesday causes is the fight to cure cancer. ACGT’s vision is a cancer-free future, and we believe developing cancer cell and gene therapies is the path to build this future, evident by six CAR T-cell therapies approved to treat blood cancers since 2017.

Not only do these therapies sidestep many of the side effects caused by traditional cancer treatments like chemotherapy and radiation, but they’re also proven to prolong survival far beyond the standard of care and lead to higher remission rates.

Our next challenge is to have this same curative impact on solid tumor malignancies, such as pancreatic cancer, lung cancer, ovarian cancer, brain cancer, breast cancer and more. We need your help to accomplish this. It’s a massive mountain to scale, but it’s one we can scale with generosity from people like you.

What Giving Tuesday means for ACGT

Robert Vonderheide, MD, PhD, explains how cell and gene therapy is different than traditional cancer treatment.

The lifeblood of ACGT is gift-giving, and Giving Tuesday is the day when public consciousness turns in full force toward donating to non-profit organizations. In the cancer research community, Giving Tuesday is integral in helping us take the next steps toward our goal.

Donations ensure we can fund the necessary research and studies to prove cell and gene therapy is a breakthrough against cancer.

Without your generosity, we couldn’t have advanced CAR-T therapies for blood cancers.

Without our donors:

So Giving Tuesday is, in short, a moment for all of us to take a gigantic leap forward toward a cancer-free future. There are many doctors and researchers in our field performing impressive work to kill tumors. Their ideas deserve funding, as do the cancer patients who could benefit from their work.

No matter how big or small your gift, you can make an impact in transforming how we treat cancer. You could give:

  • $10 for the cancer survivors who are 10 years cancer-free thanks to CAR T-cell therapy
  • $20 for the 20,000 people who have received CAR T-cell therapy for cancer
  • $34 for the $34 million ACGT has awarded for cell and gene therapy research
  • $67 for the 67 grants we’ve awarded to some of the top cancer scientists
  • $100 for the 100% survival rate we hope to achieve through the power of cell and gene therapy

If curing cancer is on your list, join ACGT’s mission for a cancer-free future by making a donation for Giving Tuesday.

Here are four other reasons you should consider donating to our Alliance against cancer.

1. 100% of donations fund research.

Crystal Mackall, MD, on why to donate to ACGT.

One of the features setting Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy apart is how much of your donation goes to research. The answer? All of it.

Every dollar you send us goes directly to supporting breakthrough studies into T-cell therapies and similar concepts.

Over the last 20 years, we’ve awarded more than $34 million to scientists trying to uncover a cure for cancer. This has led to 63 research fellows and 67 research grants from ACGT spanning 38 of the best medical institutions.

Some of the cancer centers we’re currently working with include:

  • Brigham and Women’s Hospital
  • Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital
  • Stanford University
  • The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • University of Pennsylvania Abramson Cancer Center 
  • University of California, San Francisco
  • Yale University School of Medicine 

These are just some of the very best cancer institutions in our country, and your donation allows us to collaborate with them – and with you!

2. Proof of concept: 7 cell and gene therapies approved for cancer.

Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy has already helped reach significant milestones in cancer cell and gene therapy. Our funding of early-phase research led to the first FDA-approved CAR T-cell therapy for blood cancer

The initial approval was in 2017, and today there are six CAR T-cell therapies approved for leukemia, lymphoma or multiple myeloma: 

  • Kymriah (tisagenlecleucel)
  • Yescarta (axicabtagene ciloleucel)
  • Tecartus (brexucabtagene autoleucel)
  • Breyanzi (lisocabtagene maraleucel)
  • Abecma (idecabtagene vicleucel)
  • Carvykti (ciltacabtagene autoleucel)

There’s also an engineered T-cell receptor therapy approved for a rare cancer of the eye called uveal melanoma and an oncolytic virus approved for patients with metastatic melanoma that can’t be removed with surgery.

We believe these approvals are just the beginning of cell and gene therapy changing the landscape of cancer treatment. Your donation is the way forward to test these therapies on other cancers.

3. ACGT’s Scientific Advisory Council.

There are a lot of research initiatives investigating improvements in cancer treatment. How do we at Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy know which projects deserve funding? 

The answer to this question is another distinction setting ACGT apart from other organizations. Our Scientific Advisory Council consists of the most accomplished thought leaders in cancer cell and gene therapy. They bring expertise and vision to the funding process, ensuring your donation supports the research with the most promise to finding a cure.

4. ACGT’s collaboration with partners.

Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy understands the fight against cancer cannot be done by one person — or even one group. This is why we ask for donations from you and others. It’s why we created the Scientific Advisory Council to help determine which programs to bet on. 

It’s why we collaborate with peer organizations and leading biotech companies on groundbreaking cancer cell and gene therapy projects. These partnerships will hopefully lead to clinical breakthroughs much more quickly, and forge a collaborative path forward.

Daniel Powell, PhD, on getting involved in advancing cancer research.

Our greatest collaboration is with people like you: donors who believe in a cancer-free future. Your support of Alliance for Cancer Gene Therapy is the driving force behind our mission and our funding of bold and innovative cell and gene therapy research.

This Giving Tuesday, you have an opportunity to continue moving the scientific community closer to uncovering a cure for cancer. However and for whatever reason you choose to donate, know you are helping in the fight against cancer.

Remember, your donation matters regardless of how much you give. You could donate:

  • $10 for the cancer survivors who are 10 years cancer-free thanks to CAR T-cell therapy
  • $20 for the 20,000 people who have received CAR T-cell therapy for cancer
  • $34 for the $34 million ACGT has awarded for cell and gene therapy research
  • $67 for the 67 grants we’ve awarded to some of the top cancer scientists
  • $100 for the 100% survival rate we hope to achieve through the power of cell and gene therapy

The effort to find cures for cancer has lasted for decades, but we believe recent breakthroughs in cancer cell and gene therapy mean a cancer-free future isn’t too far away. Your gift on Giving Tuesday will help us get there in time to save many lives.