The Order of the Eastern Star has presented the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation with checks for $25,297.18 to support medical research, OMRF announced today.
“We at OMRF consider ourselves extremely fortunate to have friends like the members of the Eastern Star,” said OMRF associate vice president for development Vernon Cook II. “These generous donations are the lifeblood of our foundation, and it is through gifts like these that our researchers are able to make headway against the terrible diseases that touch all of our lives.”
Cook accepted two checks at the Eastern Star Training Awards for Religious Leadership and Youth Awards in Guthrie. The gifts, from the Oklahoma Grand Chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star and Eastern Star Chapter 77 in Purcell, will fund research on neurological diseases and multiple sclerosis.
Eastern Star members raised the funds through monthly collections at the organization’s 150-plus state chapters and through Chapter 77’s Star Bike Ride, which was held in Purcell on September 27 and featured 10-mile, 25-mile and 55-mile courses.
With these gifts, the Order of the Eastern Star has donated more than $45,000 in the last two years to OMRF. “We know that the Eastern Star members worked very hard to raise these funds, and we will work very hard to turn their donations into treatments and cures,” Cook said.
OMRF researchers have developed an inhibitor for the enzyme believed responsible for Alzheimer’s disease and are now working to create a drug to treat the disease. Earlier this year, a stroke drug based on an OMRF discovery entered large-scale human clinical trials. If these trials prove successful, this drug could prevent and even reverse brain injuries caused by strokes, which strike approximately 700,000 Americans each year.
The Order of the Eastern Star is the largest fraternal organization in the world to which both men and women may belong. It counts approximately 20,000 members in Oklahoma and one million members worldwide and is dedicated to furthering charity, education, science and fraternity.
OMRF (www.omrf.org) is a nonprofit biomedical research institute dedicated to understand and curing human disease. Its scientists focus on such critical research areas as cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and cardiovascular disease. OMRF is home to Oklahoma’s only Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator and only member of the National Academy of Sciences in the area of biomedical research.