Friday, December 18, 2015

Genentech has announced the initiation of a Phase II clinical trial investigating the use of Gazyva (obinutuzumab) in patients with lupus nephritis, an inflammation of the kidney that is caused by systemic lupus erythematosus.

The aim of the study is to compare the efficacy and safety of obinutuzumab plus mycophenolate (MMF) with placebo plus MMF in Class III and IV patients with proliferative lupus nephritis. Lupus nephritis affects approximately 3 out of every 10,000 people. Up to 60% of lupus patients will develop lupus nephritis.

“Lupus nephritis is a serious disease and if not controlled, lupus nephritis can lead to kidney failure,” said Brad Rovin, MD, Head, Division of Nephrology, Ohio State University at The Ohio State University Medical Center. “It is our hope that this trial will demonstrate that obinutuzumab is an efficient and safe treatment option for patients with lupus nephritis.”

Obinutuzumab is a CD20-directed cytolytic antibody and is indicated, in combination with chlorambucil, for the treatment of patients with previously untreated chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

“The initiation of this clinical trial reinforces Genentech’s commitment to finding a treatment for patients with rare diseases, such as lupus nephritis,” said Jeffrey Siegel, MD, Senior Group Medical Director of Immunology, Genentech.

Facts about Lupus Nephritis:
·         The body’s immune system targets it own body tissues with lupus. Lupus nephritis happens when lupus involves the kidneys.
·         For many, the first noticeable symptom of lupus nephritis is the swelling of the legs, ankles and feet, however, the disease may be “silent” and not cause any symptoms. 
·         Kidney damage from lupus can be mild or severe and cause damage to the glomeruli or the filtering units of the kidney.
·         If both kidneys fail, people with lupus nephritis may need dialysis.         
·         About 90 percent of people diagnosed with lupus are women.

About the study
This study (NCT02550652) is a Phase II study comparing the efficacy and safety of obinutuzumab plus mycophenolate (MMF) with placebo plus MMF in Class III and IV patients with proliferative lupus nephritis.

The primary outcome measure is the percentage of participants who achieve complete renal response at Week 52. Participants will receive obinutuzumab 1000 milligram (mg) intravenous infusion on day 1, 15, 168, and 182 along with MMF at a starting dose of 500 mg/day administered orally in 2 or 3 divided doses. MMF dose will be up titrated based on tolerability to a maximum dose of 2.5 gram/day (g/day).

Obinutuzumab is currently approved, in combination with chlorambucil, for the treatment of patients with previously untreated chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Visit for full prescribing information.

If you have Lupus Nephritis, click this link to learn more about the study, and ask your doctor if it might be an option for you!  

*Information provided by Centron PR for Genentech

Chloe + Isabel Holiday Shopping to Benefit the Lupus Foundation of America!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

This post is a different one for me, but something I've wanted to share with all of you ladies for a little while now.  One of the most challenging things about Lupus is keeping a traditional job.  Between all of the doctor's appointments, fatigue, illness, and everything that goes along with Lupus, it can be difficult if not impossible to work a traditional 8 to 5 schedule.   My "day job" is as a Real Estate Broker, but I have recently started working with Chloe + Isabel to sell their jewelry, home and beauty items.  This company affords me the opportunity to work from home at my own pace, as well as to set up pop-up shops on days and times that work for me where I get to talk with other women too!  The bonus of socializing with other women is huge!  If you have Lupus (or even if you don't!) and you're looking for a way to earn additional income, please email me at about joining the Chloe + Isabel family.
If you'd like to do some holiday shopping, or shopping for yourself, click this link and it will bring you to my boutique!  For the month of December, I'm donating 20% of my profits to the Lupus Foundation of America for sales through this pop-up boutique!

Also everyone who shops will be entered to win $25 off their next order of $75 or more!  And if you're interested in hosting a pop-up shop (if you're local to MA, we can do it in person and if not, we can do it online!), you can win free jewelry just for hosting!

Here are some beautiful pieces under $50!  With Lupus, it can be hard to wake up and feel beautiful, so something sparkly certainly helps!
We also have awesome birthstone jewelry and stacking rings that I love!  They are great for moms or grandmothers, you can stack a ring for each child.  Or, for couples you could wear a ring for each of your birthstones.  Another idea is that us Lupus ladies can wear a purple ring for Lupus awareness!
Take a look around the site and see what you think would make you feel even more beautiful!  If you have questions, email me at and I can help you out.

You can also use the FFHOL15 code to get 25% off through Dec 15th!
It's also SUPER important to point out that I totally understand that we have sensitive skin with Lupus and some jewelry can be irritating.  Chloe + Isabel is all hypoallergenic, lead-free and nickle-free.  And every piece of jewelry is backed by a LIFETIME GUARANTEE!  :)

I've had some questions about shipping in time for Christmas.  If you order soon, and the item is in stock, you'll get it in 3 to 5 days with standard shipping.  :)

Seriously ladies, if you're in need of more income or wanting to switch jobs, please reach out to me. This is a great way to make money and help other women feel confident!  You don't even have to "do sales".  The jewelry sells itself.  Just wear it and people will ask you where you got it, and then you just direct them to your site!  It's easy and fun!

Turmeric benefits for Lupus

Friday, October 30, 2015

I would like to start off by saying that this is NOT a sponsored post.  Temple Turmeric did not give me these drinks or pay me to say anything in this post. A sweet friend of mine recently recommended that I try Temple Turmeric drinks.  She told me that they have anti-inflammatory capabilities.  I am always skeptical when people suggest a drink or a supplement to help with Lupus.   I also worry about drug interactions.  A few weeks after her and I spoke, I saw the drink in the supermarket and decided to ask my doctor about it.  She gave me the clear to try it, so I did.  I can't say these drinks taste fabulous.  The first sip is actually really difficult, it's a little spicy...but by the last sip I was craving more!  The ingredients are simple, what's listed on the front is what's in the drink.

I did some reading about Turmeric and it's benefits for Lupus.  I was concerned that it might boost the immune system, which we all know is NOT what we want.  What I read says that curcumin, which is thing in the turmeric that's important (don't you love my accurate description ;)) says that it actually regulates the immune system versus boosting it.  Here's what I read:

A new study has demonstrated a powerful regulatory mechanism by which curcumin returns the malfunctioning immune system of lupus to normal. The study likely has widespread implications for many autoimmune problems which share the common mechanism of immune system inefficiency causing health problems.
Lupus is a problem wherein the immune system attacks red blood cells when their nucleus is exposed during recycling processes in the spleen. This causes red blood cells to stick together with immune components, forming a sticky mess that behaves like Velcro floating around in the circulation. This sticky complex clogs and damages the kidneys, one of the major side effects of lupus.
The animal study showed that curcumin calmed down excessive immune activity and promoted better kidney health (protein levels inappropriately leaking into the urine, reflected of kidney damage, declined). It reduced the number of sticky complexes and prevented inflammation in the kidneys. Of specific interest is that the researchers were able to prove that curcumin was exerting its benefits by restoring the healthy function of T regulatory cells. In others words, curcumin was commanding the immune system to behave in a normal manner.
Since T regulatory cells are misbehaving as a common feature of most autoimmune problems, this finding likely has significant implications for a variety of health problems. Western medicine relies on strategies to poison immune cells in the hopes of calming down excess activity. A far superior strategy is to try to return the immune system to normal function. This study supports the idea that curcumin could be used as nutritional support to help promote immune system efficiency. 
Obviously I am not a doctor or a medical professional, I'm just a lupus patient trying to find ways to stay as healthy as possible.  So please talk to your doctor before you try anything new, even just a drink like this.  
I'm going to give Temple Turmeric drinks a try, and have one a day to see if it helps at all.  The reason I'm trying the drinks over the pills is because by drinking it with the other symphonic adaptogens like pepper and ginger help your body absorb the benefits of curcumin/turmeric even better.  
Have you tried turmeric for Lupus?  If so, do you think it's helped?

Choose Happiness!!!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

I know you've heard the saying "mind over matter"....well, with Lupus, it's easy to get discouraged when our bodies hurt so much!  I am not saying we can wish away Lupus...we can't, of course.  But I do think that when we make an effort to wake up each day and thank God for giving us more days, we can find ways to enjoy those days!  

This past weekend we headed up to Canada to visit our family.  It was so nice to see everyone and celebrate Alec's Grandma's 75th birthday!  We had so much fun and seeing everyone loving on our cutie pie was so heartwarming! His older cousins adore playing with him, and it's super cute! We also got to try out our new backpack carrier by hiking in Gatineau Park, which is SO stunningly gorgeous!  This is one of the photos I took...
That view! I could have stayed there all was that pretty! 

We also got to go pumpkin picking, visited the Canadian History Museum (Alec loved the kids room! and I think Mommy & Daddy had just as much fun in there as A did! ;)) We were so lucky to be there with Brent's mom who is so knowledgeable and was able to teach me about the exhibits at the museum.  I love learning new things! 

I hope you're all able to find joys in each day, have the physical strength to go outside for even a few minutes each day and soak up the gorgeous fall weather.  God is good! 

Boston Lupus Walk! October 24th 2015

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Hi Everyone!  Please join me in the Lupus Foundation of America's 2015 Boston Lupus Walk!

It's a family-friendly, non-competitive walk to raise money to research and hopefully cure Lupus!

Please join us! You can donate to my page here and if you'd like to walk with us, please email me.

Let's raise lots of money and find a cure for this terrible disease!