Hollings Headlines // November 2020
Celebrating a season of gratitude
Thanksgiving may be over, but we can't help but continue to reflect on how much there is to be grateful for, including:

  • Our health care workers, who risk their lives every day to save and improve the lives of others;
  • Our researchers, who work tirelessly to discover new and innovative ways to improve cancer outcomes;
  • Our patients, who continue to trust us and partner with us in their care in a time of so much uncertainty; and
  • Our community, for continually investing its time, funds and good vibes in support of the Hollings mission.
We're also thankful for ambassadors like patient Jennifer Attisano (pictured here and above), who devote their time and energy to supporting Hollings through initiatives like our cancer screening and Giving Tuesday campaigns. As we recognize November as National Caregivers Month, Attisano is thankful for the unconditional love and support she receives from her husband, Mike. She says:
"From the moment I met him, which is a romance in itself, he has been right by my side every step of the way. When I heard the words 'it’s cancer,' I worried that I would hold him back in life, and I wouldn’t be able to give him all he deserves. If it wasn’t for his calm demeanor, advice and being by my side, I don’t think I could fight breast cancer with such resilience. Mike really is my rock and my everything. We both fight this cancer every day because we are a team. I am beyond grateful!"
Read more about Jennifer and Mike's Hallmark-style love story, and let us know who in your life deserves special recognition. Share your gratitude on social media using the hashtag #HollingsGivesThanks and tag us!
Keeping the holidays happy
It's no secret this year's holiday season looks different due to the pandemic, but "different" doesn't mean there isn't still a place for celebrating with loved ones. MUSC psychologist Dr. Wendy Balliet shares her tips for creative ways to carry on holiday traditions using technology and offers advice for people with chronic illnesses for "keeping spirits bright" in this recent Health Focus podcast with South Carolina Public Radio.
Young lung cancer survivor advocates for 'listening to your body'
When 29-year-old Kelly Bulak developed a persistent cough and wheeze in the spring, she figured it was a sinus infection or pneumonia. Instead, she was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer just a few days before beginning
graduate school.

While lung cancer affects less than one person per 100,000 in her age group in the U.S., Bulak hopes her story will serve as a reminder that cancer can strike anyone at any time. Learn why she's encouraging others to be proactive about their health if anything seems off.
Research corner: T-cells in cancer treatment
Shortening T-cell manufacture

Researchers from Hollings and two other NCI-designated cancer centers recently discovered a way to speed up the generation of T-cells, which can prolong survival and sometimes cure patients with advanced solid tumors. By cutting down the time needed to manufacture these cells from several months to less than one week, the therapy can be made accessible to a broader range of patients, including those who need treatment right away.
Combatting graft-versus-host disease

Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) is a big clinical challenge because the donor's T-cells can attack a patient's organs. Hollings researchers have discovered a way to reduce GVHD while still maintaining T-cells' ability to fight leukemia.
COVID-19 can't stop the fight against cancer!
Thanks to all of the participants and sponsors who helped to make the first virtual LOWVELO a success! Together, our 606 participants logged a grand total of 123,296 miles walking, running and biking to support cancer research at Hollings.

While the event has ended, fundraising will continue through Dec. 14. And be sure to keep an eye on Hollings' Facebook and Instagram accounts for more details about LOWVELO 2021!
Reminders for Hollings staff

  • New email spam filter: On Nov. 18, MUSC implemented a new email security measure that may automatically filter e-newsletters as spam. To review what items are being marked as spam, review the Proofpoint Daily Digest emails that come to your inbox and click "allow sender" next to the Hollings Headlines newsletter.
We want your news!

Got news? We have outlets, from our news site to our video boards! We’d love to help promote your latest journal publications, grants, clinical advances and patient stories. Please contact the Hollings communications team to share your news or if you have communication questions.
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