Research

Since our inception in 2010, CRAVAT has distributed more than $50,000 to scientists working to learn about and find treatments for EHE. Medical science has recently made great strides in understanding the causes and molecular biology underlying this rare sarcoma. This includes the hugely important work from the laboratory of Dr. Brian Rubin who identified the chromosomal abnormality that is present in virtually all EHE tumor cells. Obviously, the first step to treating a disease is understanging its cause. Dr. Rubin has made key contributions to this goal over the past two years and remains focused on finding a treatment for EHE.  Our recipients to date include:

Dr. Brian Rubin, Professor of Molecular Pathology, Cleveland Clinic. Dr. Rubin characterized the specific chromosomal translocation that is now considered disease-defining for epithelioidhemangioendothelioma. Our grant will aid in the development of tissue culture (cell) and mouse (intact animal, or xenograft) models of EHE. These are not trivial undertakings but are necessary to test prospective treatments for efficacy in stopping growth of EHE tumors. We are at a critical point in this research where every financial contribution to this work can make a real difference in the rate of progress to identifying an effective treatment.

Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative. CRAVAT has contributed to a grant funded by the Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative. This collaborative effort will support work in Dr. Rubin’s laboratory intended to develop a diagnostic kit for EHE and to help develop experimental models of EHE to better understand the molecular biology of the disease and identify potential targets for treatment.

Dr. Douglas Feinstein, Research Professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Dr.Feinstein is undertaking studies to test the theory that beta-blockers will reduce tumor burden in a mouse model of hemangioendothelioma.

Dr. Edward Breitschwerdt, Director, Vector Borne Disease Diagnostic Laboratory, North Carolina State University. Dr. Breitschwerdt is studying the possible association of hemangioendothelioma and infection with species of the bacterium Bartonella.