DRIFocus Fall 2022

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Diabetes Research Institute Foundation Fall 2022

“We are deeply grateful for Jim and Betty’s extraordinary gift and the impact it has made on scientific advancement toward a cure. They have truly created a lasting and meaningful legacy and will always be part of the DRI and Foundation family.”

Jim and Betty Guy were warm, kind, and caring individuals who touched many people in positive ways throughout their lives. Growing up as part of large families in the South, they knew what it felt like to struggle and experience hard times. After proudly serving in the U.S. Army, Jim became a general contractor and land developer in Michigan and Southwest Florida. Betty’s friends and family knew her as a hardworking, straightforward, kindhearted, faith filled woman who had a presence that could light up a room.

Having lived with diabetes for over 30 years and struggled with several complications, Jim was determined to do what he could to help find a cure. After hearing about advances being made at the Diabetes Research Institute (DRI), Jim was intrigued and contacted the DRI Foundation to learn more.

That was the beginning of their long history of investing in the DRI’s research. In 2012, Jim was energized and full of hope after visiting the DRI, speaking with the scientists in their labs and discussing their mission to cure diabetes that he so strongly believed in.

Jim passed away at the age of 82, three years after losing Betty. During that time, he faced numerous health challenges. Never theless, his steadfast support of the DRI Foundation remained a priority until the end of his life. Jim’s sister, Maxine Louwaert spoke fondly of her brother and explained that “he truly enjoyed life and wanted others to enjoy it without the suffering caused by diabetes.”

Over the years, Jim expressed the couple’s desire to make a difference in the world. They envisioned a philanthropic plan for the wealth

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Estate Gift
and Betty Guy Fulfills Legacy of Helping Others $19.5 Million Gift Funds Diabetes Cure Research
from Jim
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Join the DRI Heritage Society and Be Part of the Cure

Have you included the Diabetes Research Institute (DRI) Foundation in your will, trust or other deferred giving vehicle? If so, we would like to recognize your generosity and pay tribute to you as a member of the DRI Heritage Society.

We ask you to Inform us of your intentions for several reasons:

• Communicating your wishes ensures that we utilize your gift in the manner in which you intended.

• Knowledge of a pipeline of support helps the DRI plan for the future.

• It enables us to express our gratitude during your lifetime.

Members of the DRI Heritage Society receive a uniquely designed award and are inscribed on a Wall of Honor at the Diabetes Research Institute.

If you have established a legacy gift and would like to be included in the DRI Heritage Society, please contact Jill Shapiro Miller at (954) 674-3205 or jshapiro@drif.org

Team DRI



Team Adwar DiabetesSangha Pedal for People Carrion’s Cruisers Parant Team

On September 17th, Team DRI Bike Ride took place at Cedar Creek Park in Seaford, New York. Over 100 riders, walkers, and runners participated with some supporters joining virtually around the world. Portugal and Brazil represented on their Peletons and some even swam instead of biking in support of the DRI. This year with the help of so many, we have raised over $103,000! If you are inter ested in starting your own fundraiser, it is not too late! Visit DiabetesResearch.org/jointeamdri today!

Bike Ride Team Spotlight

Team DiabetesSangha raised over $20,000 for Team DRI 2022! DiabetesSangha is committed to improving the wellbeing of those living with T1D through meditation and contemplative practices.

Visit DiabetesSangha.com for more information or follow them on IG @DiabetesSangha.

Workplace Giving Campaigns

Does your office participate in the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC), United Way or other workplace giving efforts?

As the season for these campaigns begins, many companies encourage employees to support charitable organizations. These annual contributions add up to a significant amount of income for the scientists at the Diabetes Research Institute each year. Gifts are tax deductible and can be made through a payroll deduction program.

Your support helps us offer real hope to real people affected by diabetes. Please support the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation through your workplace campaign, because tomorrow isn’t soon enough to cure everyone living with diabetes.

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they amassed. In an extraordinary gesture of benevolence, they gifted most of their estate to charity with a major portion designated to the DRI Foundation. The magnitude of their generosity has been felt throughout the entire Institute and has enabled researchers to pursue innovative ideas and move their work more quickly from their labs toward patient trials.

“We are deeply grateful for Jim and Betty’s extraordinary gift and the impact it has made on scientific advancement toward a cure. They have truly created a lasting and meaningful legacy and will always be part of the DRI and Foundation family”, said Bill Fishlinger, Chairman of the DRI Foundation’s National Board of Directors.

We are humbled to have been chosen by Jim and Betty for their transformational gift. In tribute to this very special couple, a memorial is being installed at the entrance to the lobby of the Diabetes Research Institute. Jim and Betty will forever be remembered for their extraordinary act of generosity and concern for the bettering the lives of others.

Fundraiser of the Month

The DRIF would like to extend a big thank you and bigger congratulations to Christopher McQuillan and Monica Styles for raising $8,000 by asking for donations in lieu of wedding gifts! Instead of creating a typical wedding registry, Chris and Monica selflessly requested that guests at their September wedding make donations to support the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation, an organization close to their hearts.

“As many of you may know, every day we struggle with and learn from type 1 diabetes. With organizations like DRI, a cure is within reach; we pray that this will become a reality in the very near future.”

— Monica & Chris

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To learn more visit: DiabetesResearch.org/Ways-to-Give WAYS TO GIVE
Top left: Keith Adwar and Peter Friedfeld Bottom right: Bob Parant

The DRIF now accepts automatic monthly donations!

Scientists at the DRI are making ground-breaking progress every day. In order to bring brilliant ideas to the clinic, they rely on steady, predictable funding from the Foundation. One of the best ways to support their critical work is by making automatic monthly donations, which allow our research teams to plan ahead and accelerate the path toward a cure. By setting up your automatic monthly gift, you take the guess work out and can rest assured knowing that your tax-deductible giving plan is already in place for the year ahead.

Sign up to make your monthly donation at www.diabetesresearch.org/give today and join us in our mission to cure diabetes!

A Donation that Benefits You and the DRI

A Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD) allows you to contribute directly from your individual retirement account (IRA) to charity in an easy and highly tax-efficient way. If you’re planning to take your required minimum distribution, please consider making a gift to the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation. Making a contribution from your IRA offers you the following benefits:

• It’s an easy and convenient way to make a gift from one of your major assets.

• It’s counted toward your required minimum distribution.

• The distribution will not be counted as taxable income.

• We will recognize you as a member of the DRI Heritage Society.

For your gift to qualify:

• You must be over 70 ½ years of age.

• The transfer must go directly from your IRA to the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation.

Ask your financial institution for the QCD form to complete and submit.

• Your total gift cannot exceed $100,000.

• Your gift must be outright.

For more information, or to learn about additional planning pointers, contact Jill Shapiro Miller at (954) 674-3205.

DRIF Research Update: How Do Research Discoveries Translate into Clinical Cures?

Scientific research drives discovery into novel biological pathways that regulate normal bodily functions and can indicate alterations that may play a role in autoimmunity, cancer and other diseases. Understanding of the cells, molecules and genes involved in these pathways can lead to the development of drugs, cell therapies, devices and other technologies that might enable prevention, modification, or reversal of disease. But how do scientists take laboratory findings and translate them into people?

Central to the DRI is having the infrastructure and scientists to take research from the test tube to animal models to clinical trials. Over the years, many discoveries have been made that have advanced the field of biological replacement therapies. When I undertook my second post-doctoral fellowship at the DRI, islet cell transplantation led to 10% insulin independence at one-year post-transplant. Today, under the direction of Dr. Camillo Ricordi and collaborators around the world, one year insulin independence is greater than 90% and long-term trans plant survival of many years has been achieved. Two areas remain pivotal to finding a biological cure: a widely available source of insulin producing cells and safer, more effective immune intervention agents that prevent rejection of transplanted cells.

One way that research findings are translated is through earlystage clinical trials, which are often undertaken at universities. The DRI is very active in clinical trials focused on a biological cure, intervention at the onset or in the prevention of type 1 diabetes (T1D). The Diabetes Prevention Trial (DPT), led by Dr. Jay Skyler, was groundbreaking in determining methods for predicting those at risk for T1D and in the launch of clinical trials to intervene at onset of T1D. DPT was followed by Type 1 Diabetes TrialNet, initially led by Dr. Skyler, and trials continue at the DRI today. DRI’s Carlos Blaschke kindly spent time with me detailing the ongoing studies in this area, many of which are supported by the NIH funded TrialNet consortium. In one study, patients with recent onset T1D were treated with an antibody that targets the T cells that attack

and destroy beta cells. This resulted in the first demonstration that T1D progression can be delayed for a median of two years and follow up of those patients continues. In a separate trial, aimed at prevention of T1D, an agent that blocks a key signaling pathway in T cell activation was targeted; enrollment for this study is complete and patients continue to be observed to determine if T1D will be delayed.

In the area of a biological cure for T1D, the DRI has led the way in clinical trials, and the NIH funded Clinical Islet Transplant Consortium, led by Dr. Ricordi, demonstrated that islet cell transplantation can lead to long-term insulin independence, improvement of the complications of diabetes and a reduction in severe hypoglycemia requiring assistance. Broad based application of a biological cure remains dependent on 1) identification of alternative insulin producing cell sources (as are only 2-3 thousand pancreas donors in the US - not enough insulin producing cells to treat all T1D patients) and 2) safer, more effective immune intervention agents. The DRI has been actively engaged in a clinical study involving transplantation of stem cell derived insulin producing cells, utilizing currently accepted immune intervention for islet transplantation. Dr. Ricordi recently presented the findings at the EASD meeting in Europe, including data on a DRI patient transplanted in a phase 1 (safety) / 2 (efficacy) trial with Vertex’s VX-880 (stem cell derived insulin producing cells), and the results are compelling. Utilizing the current standard immune intervention for islet transplantation it was reported that the patient who received the Vertex cells was off insulin at 270 days, with an A1c of 5.2, no hypoglycemia and 99.9% time in range for glucose levels. This data establishes proof-ofconcept and supports further development of VX-880.

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Visit us at DiabetesResearch.org
From the Desk of Norma Sue Kenyon, Ph.D., Deputy Director and the Martin Kleiman Professor of Surgery, Microbiology and Immunology and Biomedical Engineering at the Diabetes Resea rch Institute, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.
“As a parent and a scientist, I am energized by the current studies and the future potential.”

Many collaborations with industry also occur in preclinical models, including in the labs of Drs. Kenyon and Berman. The team has demonstrated that a new antibody aimed at blocking a key immune pathway (anti-CD40L, Eledon Pharmaceuticals) is safe and effective; the antibody is now beings tested in clinical studies. The team is also testing genetically modified pig islets as an alternative source of insulin producing cells (eGenesis). The conformal coating technology of Dr. Alice Tomei was licensed to Sernova, which is supporting collaborative work with Dr. Tomei to further develop the approach for clinical application. Several other collaborations between the DRI and industry are ongoing to test novel technologies in preclinical models.

Our relationship with companies that support the large-scale production of cells and immune intervention agents that can lead to a safe and effective biological cure is critically important.

Whether we engage with startups pursuing novel agents for immune intervention or companies focused on devices that can deliver local immune intervention and protect islets, our engage ment with companies is essential for taking ground-breaking research from the test tube to those patients who need it.

We are at a transformational crossroads in this regard, with many companies engaging in the development of stem cell derived insulin producing cells and novel immune intervention agents that have shown significant promise.

It will still take time, but advancements that we only dreamed of 10 years ago are turning into reality. As a parent and a scientist, I am energized by the current studies and the future potential.

A Gift of Love…A Gift of Hope Luncheon This year, A Gift of Love…A Gift of Hope luncheon was back-in-person. Organized by the ladies of the Palm Beach Auxiliary, the event celebrated the legacy of longtime event chair, Renee Aronin. Renee will forever be in our hearts. Photo: Leslie Aronin, the DRI’s Dr. Allison Bayer, Barbara Singer, a founding member of the DRI Foundation, and Corey Aronin.

Love and Hope Gala This fabulous night of glamour, casino games and good times chaired by Sandra Levy was held at the iconic Fontainebleau Miami Beach. With the support of major sponsors (pictured L to R), Annie Esformes of the Nathan J. Esformes Foundation, Sharon Gustafson of the Florescue Family Foundation, and Love & Hope’s National Chairman, Kathryn Simkins of the Simkins Family Foundation, the event raised more than $460,000! Pictured Love and Hope Chairman, Sandra Levy with Edward Liriano.

What’s New?

New Leadership Council

September 2022 was marked with the launch of DRI’s New Leadership Council, a giving society for young professionals. The NLC represents the next generation of DRIF volunteer leadership. For information about joining this incredible group visit https://diabetesresearch.org/newlead ershipcouncil/ or email Mackenzie Crane at mcrane@drif.org. Members Carly Klein and Danni Greenbaum share why they have committed to the New Leadership Council below.

“As we look forward to the next chapter of our lives, we are excited to dedicate our time, passion, and skills to work together with the incred ible members of the New Leadership Council—and have a little bit of fun while we’re at it. It’s no longer the question of if there will be a cure, but when.”

Advancements Toward a Diabetes Cure

Virtual Discussion

In September, Dr. Camillo Ricordi of the Diabetes Research Institute and Dr. James Shapiro from Alberta Diabetes Institute participated in a lively discussion about recent advances in cure research and the exciting new partnership between the two forward-thinking institu tions. This virtual discussion featuring this dynamic duo of pioneers in islet transplantation shared the advancements and promising research underway to get closer to a diabetes cure.

The Diabetes Research Institute Foundation, along with the Di abetes Research Institute Foundation Canada (DRIFCAN) recently announced the launch of a research partnership to advance efforts to find a cure for diabetes. To watch the discussion visit our YouTube Channel @DiabetesResearchInstituteFoundation.

Dreams in the City On May 5, 2022, guests gathered at the beautiful Cipriani 25 Broadway in NYC after a several-year hiatus for an incredible evening of fundraising, merriment, and purpose. They sipped on signature cocktails, bid on exciting auction items, ate divine food, hugged friends they hadn’t seen in a far too long, and danced the night away. More importantly, though, they saluted the lifetime achievements of Dr. Camillo Ricordi, honored David Weingard as he continues to dare to dream, stood in ovation for the incredible perseverance displayed by Samantha Shanken Baker, and raised nearly a quarter million dollars for the Diabetes Research Institute. Photo (left to right): Dare to Dream Honoree David Weingard, Perseverance Award Recipient and Dreams in the City Co-Chair Samantha Shanken Baker, and Lifetime Achievement Honoree Dr. Camillo Ricordi.

Out of the Kitchen DRIF’s ultimate-foodie culinary experience, Out of the Kitchen, took 20 of South Florida’s most talented chefs out of the confines of their kitchens and into the Diplomat Resort’s Ballroom to cook up something delicious for guests. In the photo, Manny Hernandez with family and friends representing Solo Printing, top sponsor of the event.

was a chic, sophisticated,

in Water Mill, NY, on August 13. The gala consisted of a delicious dinner, fabulous entertainment, lively auctions, and important education on the groundbreaking work taking place at the DRI. This intimate yet electric evening raised over $200,000 for diabetes research! Photo (left to right): Roger Silverstein, Julian Silverstein, and Patricia Silverstein.

The Donaldson Organization Golf Outing The annual Donaldson Organization Golf Outing on October 3 was one of the best yet! Over 250 golfers took to the course to change the course of diabetes, braved the cold and rain, and celebrated advancements in diabetes research all while enjoying an unforgettable, meaningful, and successful day at the legendary Winged Foot Golf Club. This year’s outing raised nearly $700,000 in the fight toward finding a biological cure for diabetes. Photo (left to right): Matt Donaldson, Bob Donaldson, Doug Donaldson, and Ty Donaldson.

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There are additional photos and event recaps on our website. Please visit DiabetesResearch.org/Events
Hamptons Garden Gala The Hamptons Garden Gala and elegant evening at the beautiful home of Patricia and Roger Silverstein

Diabetes Research Institute Foundation National Office 200 South Park Road Suite 100 Hollywood, FL 33021

address service requested



World Diabetes Day


Out of the Kitchen NEW YORK

NOVEMBER 17 Collaborate, Celebrate, Cure (C3) NEW YORK


Out of the Kitchen MIAMI

Non-Profit Org. US Postage PAID Diabetes Research Institute Foundation

DECEMBER 14 The Empire Ball NEW YORK May 17


Empires of Tech MIAMI

38th Annual Don Strock Diabetes Golf Classic MIAMI

The Diabetes Research Institute and Foundation were created for one reason – to cure diabetes – which is and will continue to be the singular focus until that goal is reached. For the millions of children and adults affected by diabetes, the Diabetes Research Institute is the best hope for a cure. Learn more at DiabetesResearch.org, or contact us directly at 800-321-3437 or info@drif.org.

Facebook.com/DiabetesResearchInstitute Instagram.com/DiabetesResearch Twitter.com/Diabetes_DRI YouTube.com/CureDiabetesDRI
2022 2023
Join Us at an Event and Be Part of the Cure!
For more information about our upcoming events
attend, visit DiabetesResearch.org/Events
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