Business Leaders Sponsor ‘Dealing for Duchenne’ Casino Night to Support DMD

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by Charles Moore |

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DMD charity event

cureduchennelogoNonprofit organizations CureDuchenne and Art In Giving are co-hosting a “Dealing for Duchenne” charity event in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on Oct. 20 to support the quest for a Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) cure.

Cambridge will emulate vintage Vegas for a one-off night featuring aiglogopoker, blackjack, and other classic casino table games. Proceeds from this charity casino night will be used to benefit and fund research projects seeking a cure for DMD, the most common muscular dystrophy variant.

Janet Wu, a former Channel 7 news science reporter, will emcee the evening’s program, which will include honoring Dr. Lou Kunkel of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, Boston Children’s Hospital, and Harvard Medical School, an internationally recognized geneticist with years of experience and scientific success in advancing understanding of the basis for muscular dystrophies.

Over the past three decades Kunkel has devoted his career to understanding the molecular basis underlying and developing therapies for neuromuscular disorders. He is also universally recognized for identifying in 1986-1987 the gene and encoded essential protein, dystrophin, involved in muscle fiber function that helps keep muscle cells intact. Dystrophin is mutated in boys with Duchenne/Becker muscular dystrophy, causing the disease.

The Cambridge casino evening will feature food, drinks, a casino night, prizes, special appearances by Vegas characters from yesteryear, and a live and silent auction.

DJ J. Boom will be spinning Ocean’s 11 beats, and Andrew Cabot of Privateer Rum will hand-mix signature cocktails in a Rat Pack Martini Bar. The event will also provide great opportunities for business leaders attending to network with colleagues from venture capital firms, hedge funds, and the Biotech C-suite.

Attendees will also have an opportunity to take a test ride in a high-end electric car, which someone will win.

“We are pleased to partner with Art in Giving to engage the Cambridge business community for a fun evening to help raise funds to find much-needed treatments for Duchenne,” Dr. Jak Knowles, MD, managing director of CureDuchenne Ventures and vice president of medical and scientific affairs for CureDuchenne, said in a press release.

“Proceeds from this event will be used to fund projects that accelerate drug development targeting all aspects of this devastating disease,” Knowles said.

“Art in Giving is dedicated to supporting pediatric cancer research via the sale of fine art. We understand the impact that rare diseases, like Duchenne, can have on children and recognize the urgent need to find solutions for patients suffering from these diseases,” says Salvatore Zinno, senior project manager of Leasing and Development at BioMed Realty, and a member of the Art in Giving Advisory Board.

“We are proud to support CureDuchenne and partner with them on this event that we believe will help educate the public about Duchenne, while generating the financial support needed to find solutions for patients,” he said.

DMD is a rare genetic disorder that occurs in about 1 out of every 3,600 male infants worldwide (and extremely rarely in girls), and is estimated to impact approximately 300,000 people worldwide.

Although the molecular defect responsible for DMD was identified by Kunkel 30 years ago, there are currently no approved therapies for DMD in the U.S., and treatment generally focuses on controlling the onset of symptoms and maximizing quality of life.

Dealing for Duchenne – Cambridge is at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 20, at 650 E. Kendall St., Cambridge, Massachusetts, with parking garage access on Linksey Way. The reception will be from 6 to 7 p.m., with gaming tables open from 7 to 10 p.m.

Attire is Cambridge Casual Up with a Twist. Corporate sponsors include Jones Lang LaSalle; Bridge Bank; Sherin & Lodgen LLP; The Richmond Group; Arrowstreet Inc.; BioMed Realty; Sarepta Therapeutics; Shire; Mitobridge; Catabasis Pharmaceuticals; Boston Private Bank; Lee Kennedy Co.; Wave Life Science; Yale Appliance + Lighting; Pfizer; Total Office; Allsteel Office; Absolute Vodka; 90+ Cellars; Privateer Rum; and Parlor Skis.

Sponsorship opportunities are still available. Visit

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