On May 8, 2021, the Norma Livingston Ovarian Cancer Foundation presented a check for $120,000 to fund Ovarian Cancer Specific Research at the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Division of Gynecologic Oncology.
Each year grant proposals are presented to a selection committee chaired by Dr. Warner Huh and Dr. Charles Leath. The committee of medical professionals and members of the Norma Livingston Ovarian Cancer Foundation review the submissions and select the project they feel has the most significant impact on ovarian cancer.
In 2021 funds were awarded to Drs. Zhao and Arend for a project targeting the PRMT1 enzyme. Many ovarian cancer patients have high levels of platelets (thrombocytosis). Both platelets and ovarian cancer cells can stimulate one another, which encourages ovarian cancer spread. In this research project, they plan to target an enzyme called protein arginine methyltransferase 1 (PRMT1) in effort to stop the communication between platelets and ovarian cancer cells. Stay tuned for research updates.
Over the past 15 years, NLOCF has funded over $1,6000,000 in ovarian cancer research. In the past funds have been used to identify why women with ovarian cancer become resistant to chemotherapy, why they recur, and how the medical profession can prevent this from happening. Advances in surgery and chemotherapy have improved patient responses and increased their time in remission, but cure rates have not significantly changed in the last 20 years and the majority of patients eventually recur.
Car Tag History
Alabama is one of three states who currently have an ovarian cancer car tag. The Waldrep family was instrumental in motivating the State of Alabama to sell the Drive Out Ovarian Cancer car tag after the death of their daughter, Brittany Waldrep. When asked, Megan Waldrep-Stalnaker, Brittany’s sister why it was so important to her family to establish the car tag for the state of Alabama she said, “Presently, the majority of women diagnosed with ovarian cancer are diagnosed in the later stages because there is no accurate screening test to detect the illness at its earliest stage. The Drive Out Ovarian Cancer car tag raises money for research in hopes that one day, doctors will discover an early detection test for ovarian cancer, so that women will be tested for this insidious disease at their annual checkups just like cervical and breast cancers.”
Prior to her diagnosis, Brittany was enjoying her first “real” job, post- college, and saving to buy a house. She was a great daughter, a loving sister and devoted aunt. Britt loved her many friends, and was always ready to go out to eat, to the lake or to the beach. But, she was taken too soon and her loss has left an empty place in the lives of all of those who loved her.
The proceeds from the sale of these tags go to fund ovarian cancer research at University of Alabama Birmingham Division of Gynecological Oncology.
How to Get Your Tag
- Take your current tag and renewal information to your local DMV or Courthouse and ask for the “Drive Out Ovarian Cancer Car Tag”
- The cost of the car tag is tax deductible
- $41.25 of the $50 fee is received directly by the Norma Livingston Ovarian Cancer Foundation to fund local research through the Division of Gynecology Oncology at UAB
- Over a million dollars has been donated to research to date