Collaboration Aims to Educate on the Importance of Clinical Trials in
Developing Potential New Sickle Cell Disease Therapies
NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) and the National Newspaper Publishers Association
(NNPA), a trade association of more than 200 African-American–owned
community newspapers from around the United States, are collaborating to
raise awareness of sickle cell disease, a lifelong and debilitating
genetic disorder that affects red blood cells.
People with rare diseases, like sickle cell disease, have unique and
complex challenges. The first initiative under the collaboration will be
a national poll, conducted in partnership with Howard University’s
Interdisciplinary Research Team in Washington, DC. The goal is to assess
the awareness of sickle cell disease, the challenges of living with the
disease, and the importance of clinical trial participation in helping
researchers succeed in developing potential new treatments. In a review
of 174 sickle cell disease trials, difficulty enrolling patients was the
stated cause in nearly half of the 30% of the trials that were
“This collaboration with Pfizer provides an opportunity for NNPA to
inform and educate the readers of our 211-member Black-owned newspapers
in more than 70 markets across the country on sickle cell disease, an
often misunderstood disease that has a profound impact on the health and
well-being of those affected,” said Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr., NNPA
President. “Together with Pfizer, we look forward to providing sickle
cell disease education that can underscore the importance of improving
quality of care in the community.”
Sickle cell disease is the most common inherited blood disorder in the
United States, affecting nearly 100,000 Americans.2 Although
it affects many different ethnic groups, the majority of people with
sickle cell disease are of African descent.3 In the United
States, sickle cell disease occurs in approximately 1 out of every 365
African-American births.4 Access to care and delivery of
innovative treatments prove to be among the most significant challenges
faced by people living with sickle cell disease in America.
“At Pfizer, we are committed to delivering life-changing therapies to
people living with rare diseases, like sickle cell disease,” said Kevin
Williams, Chief Medical Officer for Pfizer’s Rare Disease unit. “Our
commitment also goes beyond clinical research to supporting the rare
disease community through innovative collaborations. Working together,
we hope to improve awareness and ultimately address the unmet medical
needs of sickle cell disease patients.”
The poll results and information about sickle cell disease will be
shared with the NNPA network and incorporated into educational programs
at NNPA events. More information about sickle cell disease can be found
For more information about the NNPA, please visit www.nnpa.org.
Lebensburger JD, Pair L, Hilliard L, et al. Systematic review of
interventional sickle cell trials registered in clinicaltrials.gov.
Clin Trials. 2015:12(6);575-583.
Sickle Cell Disease Research & Care. National Heart, Lung, and
Sickle Cell Anemia. American Society of Hematology. http://www.hematology.org/Patients/Anemia/Sickle-Cell.aspx.
Data & Statistics. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/sicklecell/data.html.