5th Annual Daniel B. Allanoff foundation Concert
Keith, Chloe (14), Kelly, and Colby (16) Brundin
We are excited to recognize a friend of DBA, Keith Brundin who has directly benefited from the blood cancer research being conducted at The Hospital of The University of Pennsylvania and has gone on to inspire others.
Keith was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia in November 2011. He quickly learned that he had the “FLT3” mutation, which meant that while chemotherapy may put him into remission, the ultimate treatment would need to be a bone marrow transplant, for which there is typically a 50% success rate. As expected, after chemotherapy he was in remission, but the doctors warned that would only be temporary. The search for a bone marrow donor began. Unfortunately, neither of his siblings were a match, so Penn started working with the national registry through the Be The Match program. In January, Keith returned to Penn for a round of "consolidation chemotherapy", further preparation for the transplant. In February, a donor was located, and Keith’s bone marrow transplant was scheduled for March 2, 2012, one day before his 42nd birthday. In the weeks leading up to the transplant, Keith had total body radiation to completely wipe out his existing immune system, so that it could be replaced with healthy bone marrow. On March 2nd, Keith received his new bone marrow, and on March 22nd, he returned home to continue his 100 days of post-transplant recovery.
Keith was very fortunate in that his body responded to the “traditional” treatments exactly the way it was supposed to. While there were ups and downs – including late night trips to the Penn Emergency Room to deal with fevers, pneumonia, etc. – ultimately, he had largely recovered by about one year after his initial diagnosis. Through it all, the doctors at Penn were absolutely amazing. If Keith had been diagnosed 10 years earlier, it is quite likely he would not have survived, as his leukemia was extremely advanced when diagnosed. Additionally, it remains to be seen what impacts chemotherapy and radiation will have on him on a long-term basis. Keith and his family are extremely proud to support the DBA Foundation and the research being done at Penn, so that future blood cancer patients have even more life saving options than those that Keith had.