Sponsors power Uplifting Athletes’ 2019 Young Investigator Draft


Uplifting Athletes is excited to host the 2nd Annual Young Investigator Draft on Saturday, March 9th at Lincoln Financial Field, home of the NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles.

The Young Investigator Draft is the result of Uplifting Athletes’ ongoing commitment to cultivate resources that accelerate scientific advancements for rare disease treatments and potential cures while facilitating the next generation of rare disease researchers.

It takes a strong team to make the Young Investigator Draft a success. We are grateful to all of the major sponsors on our team this year.

“The support that we have received for this event has worked to amplify and instill more purpose in what we do on a day-to-day basis,” Uplifting Athletes Executive Director Rob Long said. “We have great passion to do all we can to have a positive and lasting effect on the Rare Disease Community. Without this event and its sponsors our impact wouldn’t be the same.”

For the second year in a row, global biotechnology leader CSL Behring is the title sponsor of the Young Investigator Draft. CSL Behring is the fifth largest biotechnology company in the world and their commitment as the signature sponsor has been a game changer.

This is the second year to have Sanofi-Genzyme as a teammate. In 2019, Sanofi-Genzyme is sponsoring the Rare Genetics Disorder grant. At Sanofi-Genzyme, they continue to focus on being transformative in rare diseases: developing therapies, supporting research and offering innovative solutions that have the potential to offer meaningful change to those impacted by rare diseases.

Horizon Pharma was one of the first sponsors of the Young Investigator Draft and we are honored to have them back in year No. 2. Horizon is the Rare Blood Disorders grant sponsor for 2019. Horizon Pharma defines its success by a different set of numbers: the number of lives touched, the number of lives changed, the number of lives saved.

For the second year in a row Retrophin is part of the Young Investigator Draft team. This year, Retrophin is the the Rare Blood Disorders grant sponsor. At Retrophin, their mission is to identify, develop and deliver life-changing therapies to people living with rare diseases.

PRA Health Sciences has been a strong two-year supporter of Uplifting Athletes and the Young Investigator Draft. For 2019, PRA Health Sciences is on board as an All-American sponsor. PRA Health Sciences is dedicated to the future of clinical development and every life it saves.

Uplifting Athletes is pleased to have first-time sponsor Bristol-Myers Squibb as an All-Conference sponsor of the Young Investigator Draft. Bristol-Myers Squibb is a global biopharmaceutical company whose mission is to discover, develop and deliver innovative medicines that help patients prevail over serious diseases.

Spark Therapeutics was the very first sponsor of the Young Investigator Draft and we will always be grateful for their commitment to rare disease research through our event. In 2019, Spark returns as a Varsity sponsor. At Spark Therapeutics their mission is to challenge the inevitability of genetic disease by discovering, developing and delivering treatments in ways unimaginable – until now.

This is the second year for Strongbridge Biopharma as a Young Investigator Draft teammate. In 2019, Strongbridge Biopharma is a Varsity sponsor. They are called Strongbridge for a reason. They are building a strong clinical and financial foundation to connect patients with new treatments for rare diseases.

We Work For Health (WWFH) is in its second year as a sponsor and in 2019 will be a Varsity sponsor. We Work For Health is supported by PhRMA and seeks to educate elected leaders, the news media and the communities they serve about the important contributions companies and their employees make to the health and economic security of individuals, local communities, states and the nation.

Ultragenyx is a new member of the Young Investigator Draft sponsor team this year and will be a Varsity sponsor in 2019. Ultragenyx is a biopharmaceutical company committed to bringing to patients novel products for the treatment of rare and ultra-rare diseases, with a focus on serious, debilitating genetic diseases.

And finally, Uplifting Athletes is honored to have 3 CBS Philly on board for 2019 as our Young Investigator Draft Media sponsor.

Similar to the NFL Draft where teams select the top young prospects they feel can make the most impact on their future, at the Young Investigator Draft, Uplifting Athletes will reveal our 2019 draft class in five different rare disease categories.

The five Young Investigator categories are: rare cancers, rare autoimmune and immunological disorders, rare blood disorders, rare genetic disorders and rare muscular and neurological disorders.

“After the great success of last year’s inaugural Young Investigator Draft, we are proud to once again use our platform to promote and support the brilliant minds that are conducting rare disease research.” Long said. “We are uniquely positioned to host an event where we can foster collaboration and awareness by bringing together patients, caregivers, researchers, clinicians, industry and athletes in one room.”

Young Investigator Draft grants are intended to inspire collaborative and translational research that will benefit the entire Rare Disease Community. The Young Investigator Draft stage will provide a platform for these scientists to educate and inspire the audience by sharing their research along with its impact on the Rare Disease Community.

Tickets to the 2019 Young Investigator Draft are available through the registration page. The event will include stadium tours of Lincoln Financial Field, heavy hors d’oeuvres and beer and wine prior to the program for the evening.

The challenges faced by the Rare Disease Community are bigger than any one individual, team or organization can tackle alone. At Uplifting Athletes we take pride in providing opportunity for college football student-athletes and NFL players to use the platform they are afforded to shine a spotlight on rare diseases and support the cause.

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