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Georgia Man Promotes Importance of Knowing Family History to Prevent Aortic Dissection

Posted on Wednesday, January 29th, 2014, by with Comments Off

Tim Ealer’s father, George, passed away due to complications of an aortic dissection. Since then, Tim has learned that this disease can run in families. He spoke with a reporter about his dad and the importance of screening (aortic imaging) if you have a family history of thoracic aortic aneurysm and/or dissection. Watch the interview here:  Tim Ealer on 41 Today (NBC/WMGT).

Learn more here:  What Is Aortic Disease?


The 2013 Team Ritter ING NYC Marathon Team

Posted on Tuesday, November 12th, 2013, by with Comments Off

On November 3, twenty-two Team Ritter runners ran the ING NYC Marathon on behalf of the John Ritter Foundation for Aortic Health and earned Finisher medals.  Although this was not the first time some of the runners had completed a marathon, it may have been the most meaningful for them.  Why?  Because this race was only one milestone among many during their journey to the marathon.

Over the last five months, Team Ritter’s 2013 ING New York City Marathon running team has informed hundreds of people about thoracic aortic disease by sharing their stories at health fairs, during media interviews, at fundraising events, and by talking to anyone who would listen.  To date, they have raised over $114,000 so we can inform and educate the public and medical professionals about thoracic aortic disease, provide support to individuals and families affected by aortic disease, and fund research.  And they have done all this while training for a marathon!

We are very proud of this team.  Please join us in congratulating Team Ritter on a job well done!

 

2013 Team Ritter - ING NYC Marathon with Amy Yasbeck, Stella, and Jason Ritter

2013 Team Ritter – ING NYC Marathon with Amy Yasbeck, Stella, and Jason Ritter


 
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Team Ritter NYC Marathon runners raise aortic disease awareness, funds

Posted on Saturday, October 19th, 2013, by with Comments Off

HOUSTON – (Oct. 9, 2013) – Friends and family members of people with thoracic aortic disease and fans of the late legendary comedic actor John Ritter will come together as Team Ritter to raise funds for the John Ritter Foundation for Aortic Health (JRF) at the ING New York City Marathon on Nov. 3, 2013.

“We are so proud and grateful to again be one of the official charities of this year’s NYC Marathon and have the opportunity to raise much-needed funds for lifesaving research and education,” said actress, writer and aortic health advocate Amy Yasbeck, the widow of Ritter, who died from an acute aortic dissection in 2003. “Team Ritter runners are passionate about increasing awareness of aortic dissection and its risk factors and are committed to raising funds to support the JRF.”

Funds from the NYC Marathon raised for the JRF will go to the John Ritter Research Program in Aortic and Vascular Diseases (JRRP) at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) to support research to identify genetic risks for aortic dissections. To donate, visit Edward Norton’s Crowdrise online fundraising community: www.crowdrise.com/TeamRitterINGNYCMarathon2013.

“The funds raised by Team Ritter will allow us to continue our genetic research to identify genes or altered DNA that increases someone’s risk for an acute aortic dissection. By identifying who is at risk, we can prevent premature deaths due to aortic dissections,” said Dianna Milewicz, M.D., Ph.D., director of UTHealth’s John Ritter Research Program. “It will also help us spread information to both physicians and the public about symptoms and genetic risk factors for aortic dissections, including the fact that this condition can run in families.” Milewicz is professor and George H. W. Bush Chair in Cardiovascular Research in the Division of Medical Genetics at the UTHealth Medical School.
Fundraising Websites – Crowdrise
Read more and meet the team:

(more…)


UTHealth Researchers Link PRKG1 Genetic Mutation to Thoracic Aortic Disease

Posted on Wednesday, August 7th, 2013, by with Comments Off

HOUSTON – (Aug. 7, 2013) – A multi-institutional team led by Dianna Milewicz, M.D., Ph.D., of The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) has found a recurrent genetic mutation that has been linked to deadly thoracic aortic dissections in family members as young as 17 years of age.

The gene known as PRKG1 makes a protein called cGMP-dependent kinase, type I. The PRKG1 mutation alters the function of the protein and causes the muscle cells in the wall of the aorta to respond incorrectly to pulsatile blood flow from the heart, and the change in this one protein ultimately causes thoracic aortic aneurysm and acute aortic dissection. The mutation was identified in four families, including three in the United States. The majority of the affected family members suffered acute aortic dissections at young ages (17 to 51 years). (more…)


Paint & Sip for a Cause on April 13, 2013 in Saratoga Springs, NY

Posted on Saturday, April 6th, 2013, by with Comments Off

This is your chance to paint your own masterpiece and raise money to support efforts to increase awareness and genetic research on thoracic aortic aneurysms and dissections.  How cool is that?

This event will honor the memory of Cliff Klein and the positive impact he had on many people’s lives.  We thank Sarah Jurica for organizing this and for her support of the John Ritter Foundation.

Date:  Saturday, April 13, 2013

Time:  4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Location:  Saratoga Paint & Sip Studio, 80 Henry Street, Saratoga Springs, NY  12866

Click here to register:  https://www.saratogapaintandsip.com/calendar/john-ritter-foundation-fundraiser/


Survivors of Aortic Dissection Group Meeting Scheduled in Ann Arbor, Michigan on April 22, 2013

Posted on Friday, April 5th, 2013, by with Comments Off

It can be difficult to find others to talk to who understand what an aortic dissection survivor has been through.  The John Ritter Research Program is pleased to pass along this information about a group meeting that one survivor has organized in Michigan.  Here are the details:

Chris Kasper (chriskasper17@gmail.com) has organized a support and informational group meeting for survivors of aortic dissection, their families, and their caregivers to take place in Ann Arbor, Michigan on Monday, April 22, 2013, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Eastern time.  The meeting will be held at:

University of Michigan

EAA Health & Geriatrics Center

Room B1-407

4260 Plymouth Rd.

Ann Arbor, MI 48109

There are three buildings which make up this “campus”.  The building where the meeting will be held is the one in the center.  When you enter the building, take the elevator to level B1.  Exit straight out of the elevator and go through a set of double doors to the left of Java city.  The conference room is B1-407 and will be on the right side of the hallway across from the patio.  Please contact Chris directly at chriskasper17@gmail.com with any questions.  

A subsequent meeting is being planned for July 22, 2013 in the same location.  Chris is hoping to make this a quarterly event.

Thank you, Chris, for sharing this information with us and for providing survivors with an opportunity to meet and talk!


BioHouston to Honor Dr. Dianna M. Milewicz for Scientific Leadership

Posted on Thursday, November 8th, 2012, by with Comments Off

Dianna M. Milewicz, MD, PhD, Director of the John Ritter Research Program in Aortic and Vascular Diseases and holder of the President George H.W. Bush Chair of Cardiovascular Medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, will be honored on Wednesday, November 14, 2012 by BioHouston at its Fourth Annual Lunch Celebrating Women in Science.

To be held at the River Oaks Country Club in Houston, TX, the luncheon also will honor Dr. Lydia Kavraki, Rice University; Dr. Renu Khator, University of Houston; and Sara Ortwein, ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company.

The four will be celebrated for demonstrating “extraordinary leadership in science and technology.”

The mission of BioHouston is to “create an environment that will stimulate technology transfer and research commercialization, thereby generating economic wealth for the Houston region and making it a global competitor in life science commercialization.”

Registration deadline is Friday, November 9 at 3:00 p.m. Central time.

Congratulations, Dr. Milewicz!


The Sofia Gutierrez Second Annual Brain Aneurysm Fund Raiser Event – November 10, 2012

Posted on Wednesday, November 7th, 2012, by with Comments Off

The second annual Sofia Gutierrez Brain Aneurysm Awareness Fund Raiser Event will be held from 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. on Saturday, November 10, at the Orange Park Mall in Orange Park, Florida (20 miles south of Jacksonville).  Here is the very touching story of the Gutierrez family’s motivation to find answers about cerebral aneurysms:  Family warns parents about condition that killed daughter.

The event will benefit the John Ritter Foundation for Aortic Health, and all funds raised will go to the Sofia Alejandra Gutierrez Brain Aneurysm Research Fund to support research the John Ritter Research Program in Aortic and Vascular Diseases (JRRP) at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) is doing on the genetics of cerebral aneurysms.  The Director of the JRRP, Dianna M. Milewicz, MD, PhD, will attend and be available to answer questions about the genetics of cerebral and other vascular aneurysms.

The event will feature the Clay County Fire Department, Shands Hospital Trauma One Helicopter, bounce houses, live entertainment, silent auction, door prizes, vendors, and much more.

If you’re in the Orange Park area and looking for something fun for the family to do, come on out!


Meet Monica Slack of Team Ritter

Posted on Sunday, October 28th, 2012, by with Comments Off

Monica Slack will be one of 15 individuals running to raise money and increase awarenesss of thoracic aortic disease for the John Ritter Foundation for Aortic Health (JRF) at the ING New York City Marathon on Nov. 4, 2012.  Funds from the NYC Marathon raised for the JRF will go to the John Ritter Research Program in Aortic and Vascular Diseases (JRRP) at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) to support research to identify genetic risks for aortic dissections. 

Meet Monica: 

Acute care nurse practitioner Monica Slack has daily encounters with patients who have suffered acute aortic dissections and aneurysms, as well as other cardiovascular diseases. Working in the cardiac surgical intensive care unit at The University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore, she works hard to educate her patients about their disease. The 25-year-old is also a dedicated marathon runner and she didn’t hesitate to sign up for Team Ritter. “As someone who works with these patients firsthand, I would like nothing more than to combine my love of running with a cause about which I am passionate and feel as though I can incorporate into my daily work-life. These patients are often unaware of the function of the aorta, how it dissects and the high likelihood of mortality following perforation of the aorta. They are also unaware of the importance of blood pressure control in preventing aortic pathology,” Slack said. “A charity such as this one can contribute to preventative aortic health education in the outpatient/public spectrum.”

Text RITTERMS to 41444 to donate $10 (or specify a different amount in the text message) to JRF to support Monica’s run. Or donate online: http://www.crowdrise.com/monicaslack.

Read the full press release here.

Deborah Mann Lake, UTHealth Media Relations
Media Hotline: 713-500-3030
 
                                                            
http://www.ingnycmarathon.org/                                                              http://www.nyrr.org/


Meet Nicole Kreisler of Team Ritter

Posted on Sunday, October 28th, 2012, by with Comments Off

Nicole Kreisler will be one of 15 individuals running to raise money and increase awarenesss of thoracic aortic disease for the John Ritter Foundation for Aortic Health (JRF) at the ING New York City Marathon on Nov. 4, 2012.  Funds from the NYC Marathon raised for the JRF will go to the John Ritter Research Program in Aortic and Vascular Diseases (JRRP) at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) to support research to identify genetic risks for aortic dissections. 

Meet Nicole: 

As an operating room nurse, Nicole Kreisler has seen her share of what cardiovascular disease can do to patients. She also has fond memories of watching John Ritter in “Three’s Company.” So the Milwaukee resident was excited to learn that she will be part of Team Ritter at the ING NYC Marathon. “Jack Tripper’s character and physical humor gave my brother and me many laughs,” said Kreisler, who is married to a fellow marathon runner and has two children. “I think we know every episode by heart. With my work background, I have a great understanding of aortic and vascular disease. By running for the John Ritter Foundation, I am able to support someone I was fond of, as well as share information and educate people on an important disease.” A longtime runner, the 37-year-old has run four marathons in the last two years, including the Boston Marathon. This will be her first time in the NYC event.

Text RITTERNK to 41444 to donate $10 (or specify a different amount in the text message) to JRF to support Nicole’s run. Or donate online: http://www.crowdrise.com/TeamRitterNYCMarathon2012/fundraiser/nicolekreisler.

Read the full press release here.

Deborah Mann Lake, UTHealth Media Relations
Media Hotline: 713-500-3030
 
                                                            
http://www.ingnycmarathon.org/                                                              http://www.nyrr.org/


 


 

 

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