Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation Announces Breathe Benefit 2012: Community Inspiring A Cure Dinner

The Foundation Invites the Global Pulmonary Fibrosis Community to Join Together in an Evening of Raising Funds and Awareness while Honoring Those Making a Difference

CHICAGO, Aug. 23, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation (PFF) announced today that it will host its annual dinner, Breathe Benefit 2012: Community Inspiring a Cure, on Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 6:30 p.m. (CDT).  In an effort to include the international pulmonary fibrosis (PF) community, the Foundation is introducing the Global Dinner concept to coincide with its Chicago Dinner.  Any individual who is unable to attend the Chicago Dinner, yet wishes to raise funds and awareness, is invited to host their own Global Dinner. "These events will enable us to foster a greater sense of community with our patients, families, and friends while recognizing the efforts of those who work tirelessly to support the Foundation's mission," stated Patti Tuomey, Chief Operating Officer.  "Please help us make a difference and join us for our Breathe Benefit 2012."

The Drake Hotel, a legendary location, will be the setting for the inspirational Chicago Dinner.  For the second year, the PFF is honored to have Mary Ann Ahern from NBC5 News serve as an honorary chair and emcee. Attendees will include medical and research professionals, patients, caregivers, family members, and other valued supporters of the PFF.  Also in attendance will be award-winning actress and devoted PFF-advocate Julie Halston and her husband, broadcaster Ralph Howard.   The evening will feature award presentations including two new awards created to recognize significant contributions to the community: the "Legacy Award" and the "Impact Award."  Additionally, the Foundation will recognize the recipients of its 2012 research grants and recipients of the Leanne Storch Support Group Fund.

The evening will feature a special tribute to Foundation co-founder I.M. Rosenzweig, Ph.D.  Mike, as he was known to most, lost his courageous battle against idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) on June 23, 2012. Dr. Rosenzweig and his brother Albert Rose, after losing their sister to IPF and both being diagnosed with the disease, started the Foundation in September of 2000. Albert Rose succumbed to IPF in 2002. Dr. Rosenzweig faithfully led the Foundation until progression of his disease forced him to retire in 2009.  In recognition of both co-founders and their dedication to funding research, two grants have been renamed in their memories–the I.M. Rosenzweig Young Investigator Award and the Albert Rose Established Investigator Award.  In tribute to Dr. Rosenzweig's memory, InterMune, a biotechnology company in Brisbane, CA, has pledged $100,000 to fully fund two Young Investigator Awards.

The Foundation's Global Dinner was created to allow individuals from Paris, Illinois to Paris, France to participate in the Breathe Benefit 2012.  Awareness is one of the four pillars of the PFF's mission and is an essential component in helping develop effective treatments. Participants' dinners can be as easy or elaborate, as inexpensive or expensive, as small or large as the hosts' desire. A potluck, a four-course meal, an evening at a favorite neighborhood restaurant–the possibilities are endless. Global Dinner hosts will be able to raise funds and awareness by inviting family, friends, co-workers, and members of their social groups to participate in this special night.  The PFF will provide each Breathe Benefit 2012 Global Dinner host with an online registration and donation page, as well as a Global Dinner eToolkit. For more information about hosting a Global Dinner, please contact Jennifer Bulandr at [email protected]  For information about Breathe Benefit 2012 sponsorship opportunities, or to purchase tickets, please contact Amanda Miller at [email protected] or 888.733.6741.

About the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation
The mission of the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation (PFF) is to help find a cure for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), advocate for the pulmonary fibrosis community, promote disease awareness, and provide a compassionate environment for patients and their families. The PFF collaborates with physicians, organizations, patients, and caregivers worldwide. December 1-3, 2011 the PFF hosted its first biennial international scientific conference, IPF Summit 2011: From Bench to Bedside, in Chicago; PFF Summit 2013 will be held December 5–7, 2013. For more information visit www.pulmonaryfibrosis.org or call 888.733.6741.

About Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a condition in which over a period of time the lung tissue becomes thickened, stiff, and scarred. The development of the scar tissue is called fibrosis. As the lung tissue becomes scarred and thicker, the lungs lose their ability to transfer oxygen into the bloodstream. As a result, the brain and other organs don't receive the oxygen they need. In some cases, doctors can determine the cause of the fibrosis, but in most cases, there is not a known cause. When there is no known etiology for the fibrosis (and certain pathologic or radiographic criteria are met) the disease is called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, or IPF. IPF affects approximately 200,000 individuals in the United States (US), and 138,000 individuals in the European Union (EU). The annual mortality is estimated to be 40,000 in the US alone, with an average survival of 2–3 years following diagnosis.  There is no cure for IPF. There is no FDA-approved treatment for IPF in the US and extremely limited therapeutic options available for only a small subset of individuals with IPF in the EU and Asia.

Cara Schillinger
Associate Vice President, Communications and Marketing
[email protected]

SOURCE The Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation