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October 2016                                                         Volume 12 Issue 10
  Director's Letter
As we enter this holiday season, it is natural for many people to consider how they might share their blessings with others.  As the BTER Foundation's Director, I must think about how to replenish the BTER Foundation's funds throughout the year, as we engage in the work that supports our mission to "advance health care through education and research in biotherapy." Each year, we work towards our mission by producing educational programs, subsidizing the cost of therapy for financially challenged patients through Patient Assistance Grants, and supporting therapists by providing grants, hosting workshops, and engaging in research.  Over the next couple of months, I will focus on some of these programs in my Director's Letter as a way of helping you consider ways in which you can join us in accomplish our mission together.

The BTER Foundation was founded in 2003, as an outgrowth of the University of California's Maggot Therapy Project. The project was the only producer of medical grade maggots in North America, and provided them for free to anyone without the means to pay for them. The laboratory also paid for some of its research using donations, when NIH and other grants were inadequate. A generous donor approached the University with a gift of paintings by the famed artist, Kevin Raye Larson, but the University administration turned away the donor. I heard about the gift several months later, and together, the founding members of the BTER Foundation (Sharon Mendez, Pamela Mitchell, Samuel Kohn and myself) established this not-for-profit in order to ensure that there would finally be a simple and effective path to convert public gifts into meaningful support for biotherapy patients, therapists and research.

The first program we created was the Patient Assistance Grants program - something that already existed through the Maggot Therapy Project, but would now also be able to support patients who used biotherapeutic services outside those of the Maggot Therapy Project. Pam Mitchell was a significant force behind this program, and provided personal attention to all clients as our Patient Advocate. After her passing in 2011, the BTER Foundation renamed its Patient Assistance Grants program in her honor: Pam Mitchell Memorial Fund for Patient Assistance Grants.

Our primary fundraising goal this year is to raise $4,000 for the Pam Mitchell fund. In the past, we have been able to provide only $2,500 per year in grants; but often have requests that exceed this amount. It is our hope that, this year, we will be able to support all patients who need our assistance. But we need your assistance to reach this goal. If the BTER Foundation assisted you in the past - with a grant, with a referral to a therapist, with information, with a lecture or workshop, or with your research - then please consider a gift in any amount, to help us continue our work.

With best wishes, always,

R Sherman (signature)

Ron Sherman

Review us on Great Nonprofits!

Friends of the BTER Foundation, we need your help!  As we seek to obtain grants for research, it is vitally important that we have a strong online presence.  

If you have had a positive interaction with or been helped by the BTER Foundation, please rate us or leave a review of us on Great Nonprofits!  

Biotherapist Interview: Dr. Chris Kleronomos

Q: What made you interested in serving as a BTER Foundation board member?
A:My interest originally stemmed from collaboration between BTER and The American Apitherapy Society. I had always had an interest in biotherapies stemming from research on MDT. After several years of interaction with Dr. Sherman and attendance at a joint conference I felt that the mission was vital and wanted to contribute. Bringing these remarkable therapies to the mainstream is of critical importance in today's healthcare system and can address multiple problems facing the medical community.

Q: What is your specialty within biotherapy?
A: My specialty is in the application of Bee Venom Therapy which I apply to a variety of conditions. Like MDT, it is a hard therapy to get across to patients from an educational perspective due to the typically visceral response.Currently, I am also the Vice President of the AAS and frequently lecture on this subject.

Q: What drew you to biotherapy?
A: My original interest started in the Military where I was a Corpsman with the USMC Force Recon Teams. Often we would be in places without formal medical support and I enjoyed studying field medicine, and discovered maggot therapy has a long history of military use. Ultimately I did not really become involved until graduate school where a professor of mine introduced me to bee venom therapy which he was using for MS.

Q: How can we improve patient care and therapist support within biotherapy?
A: Education and exposure. We must generate more interest in all the biotherapies in order to drive research as we are facing critical crisis with antibiotic resistance, viral infections, autoimmunity and pain.

Q: What is your favorite thing about the BTER Foundation?
The absolute dedication to the mission and tireless support for both patients and providers.
Ichthyotherapy and Psoriasis Study

The BTER Foundation is looking for dermatologists and podiatrists willing to collaborate on a study examining using ichthyotherapy to treat psoriasis.  We are also looking for individuals with psoriasis who may be interested in participating in the study.  If you or someone you know is a dermatologist, podiatrist, or suffers from psoriasis, please contac t  or contact Dr. Ron Sherman at (949) 278-9756.
Biotherapy Around the World
Helminthic Therapy Online Survey

Have you used or considered using helminthic therapy? Consider helping out University of Washington graduate researcher Skye Naslund by participating in her brief online survey.

Participate in the online survey  here.
APWH Conference - November 10-13
Atlanta, GA, USA

The Academy of Physicians in Wound Healing is holding its 2016 National Wound Healing Conference next month, and it is open to all interested medical providers!

  2016 Biotherapy Conferences
  * denotes BTER Foundation Presence
** denotes biotherapy lecture(s) by a BTER Foundation member or with teaching materials provided by the BTER Foundation.
     October 3-4;  4th Microbiome R&D and Business Collaboration Forum 
               USA (including Probiotics Congress) ;  San Diego, CA, USA 
      October 7-8;   Second World Hirudotherapy Conference;  Moscow, Russia
     October 21-23; Charles Mraz Apitherapy Course & Conference; Redondo                   Beach, CA, USA
              Atlanta, GA, USA
     November 24-26; Innovative Veterinary Medicine Conference;  Veenendaal, the Netherlands

      View Past and Upcoming Conferences

Please let us know if you are aware of any other Biotherapy conferences!
Publication Credits

THE BeTER LeTTER is published by:
BioTherapeutics, Education & Research (BTER) Foundation
36 Urey Court, Irvine, CA 92617
Phone: 949-246-1156 / Fax: 949-679-3001
Ronald A. Sherman

Assistant Editor:
Amy Lajiness

Contributing Writers:
Dr. Sagiv Ben-Yakir, Dr. Jose Contreras-Ruiz, Dr. Robert McKie, Dr. Jacques Oskam, Sheri Rosen, Dr. Pascal Steenvoorde, Dr. Tarek Tantawi, Catalina Wang,
Dr. Shou Yu Wang. Your name could be here!

Foundation Consultants:
Eve Iversen, Dr. Alana Jolley, Amy Mendez, Joanne Preston, Dr. Aletha Tippett

Foundation Board:
Ronald A Sherman (Chair);  Sagiv Ben-Yakir; Chris Kleronomos; Samuel G Kohn (Treasurer); Sheri Rosen.

Past Board Members:
Donna Beales Sharon Mendez; Pamela Mitchell; Randall Sullivan

Administrative Assistant:
Amy Lajiness
"The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not 'Eureka!' (I found it!) but 'That's funny ...'" 
                                                         -Isaac Asimov
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