Singer and actress Selena Gomez recently established the Selena Gomez Fund for Lupus Research with a donation to the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California.
The fund will support a pilot research program focused on treating complications of lupus led by Janos Peti-Peterdi, MD, PhD, professor of physiology and biophysics at the Keck School of Medicine.
“I continue to be optimistic about the progress being made in lupus research and am proud to support the promising work at Keck School of Medicine,” Gomez said. “I am hopeful for the millions of us around the world that may benefit from this.”
The research program potentially lays the foundation for targeted therapeutic treatment breakthroughs. It is a collaborative effort between Peti-Peterdi and Chaim Jacob, MD, PhD, professor of medicine at Keck School of Medicine, who specialize in lupus research.
“We are extremely pleased to partner with Selena in her efforts to promote awareness and medical research toward a much-needed cure for lupus,” Peti-Peterdi said. “Complications from systemic lupus cause serious damage, and we are hopeful that our research, with Selena’s support, will help those affected by this disease lead full, healthy lives.”
Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that affects more than 1.5 million Americans and more than 5 million people worldwide. There is no cure.
Gomez was diagnosed with lupus in 2011 and went public with the news in 2015. The cover story of the April/May 2017 issue of Pain-Free Living describes how her struggles and those of other celebrities have brought new attention to lupus.
Peti-Peterdi is among the nation’s most prominent researchers looking at complications from lupus. His award-winning interdisciplinary research team are experts in the genetics and pathogenesis of lupus and have conducted groundbreaking work using state-of-the-art imaging techniques to model new methods for understanding the true sources of lupus complications.
Gifts to support the important work of the Selena Gomez Fund for Lupus Research can be made at keck.usc.edu/giving/selenafund.