Driving research of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME / CFS),
Post Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome (PTLDS), Fibromyalgia and Post COVID .

Linda Tannenbaum, Founder & CEO/President

Linda Tannenbaum is the Founder and CEO/President of Open Medicine Foundation. Linda founded OMF after her 16-year-old daughter came down with sudden onset ME / CFS in 2006. She was told there was no diagnostic test or treatment for the devastating disease that was preventing her daughter from leaving her bed and living her life. After researching options, Linda realized that open, global collaborative research into the disease was terribly lacking, as…

Ronald G. Tompkins, MD, ScD
Chief Medical Officer – Open Medicine Foundation
Co-Director – The Harvard ME/CFS Collaboration at the Harvard Affiliated Hospitals

Sumner M. Redstone Professor of Surgery, Harvard Medical School Founding Director, Center for Surgery, Innovation & Bioengineering, Massachusetts General Hospital Co-Director, The OMF-sponsored ME / CFS Collaboration at the Harvard-Affiliated Hospitals, Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital Dr. Ronald Tompkins's work in the genomics, proteomics, and ultrastructural roles in inflammation and metabolism promises to discover underlying mechanisms of ME / CFS, and his leadership in multidisciplinary, multi-institutional large research projects will energize OMF’s efforts to ignite ME / CFS…

Kimberly Hicks, COO/CFO/Treasurer

Ms. Hicks has worked with OMF as a board member since 2014, has served in an interim capacity as the CFO/COO, and has joined the team full-time.  She is a C-suite Finance industry veteran with over 25 years of leadership, business transformation, business development/sales, merger integrations, and major strategic initiative experience across private and public sectors, and international settings.  In the past few years she has transitioned to Health Tech and Healthcare,…

Kathleen Morgen, Vice President of Philanthropy

Kathleen Morgen comes to us most recently as the Principal of Morgen Lloyd & Associates, a full service consulting firm for non-profits, raising millions of dollars annually and offering a comprehensive menu of fundraising and management services.  Throughout her 30+ year career, Kathleen has supported the growth and development of nonprofits and hospitals across California, strengthening their infrastructure and deepening their relationships with their constituents. Kathleen’s job at OMF is…

Andrew K. Alexander, MBA, Program Manager for Open Medicine Foundation

As Program Manager, Andrew serves as the liaison between the Collaborative Research Center (CRC) Directors and OMF leadership. He ensures that all parties stay informed on the progress of ongoing OMF funded research projects that support  the Foundation’s research agenda. Andrew is currently Director of Business Development (Clinical Innovation) at Massachusetts General Hospital & Harvard Medical School. He has been affiliated with MGH and Harvard for over 10 years, gaining clinical…

Debby Husch, Administrative Manager

Debby Husch has worked in non-profit fundraising for two decades. In her prior role at a national healthcare organization, Debby provided support to a national network of over 40 chapters, fostering fundraising growth and enhancing organizational strength; she planned week-long conferences and more. Debby has extensive experience in special event and project management. At OMF, Debby provides management support for programs and fundraising, as well as administrative functions.  Debby also…

Heather Ah San, Development and Communications Manager

Heather comes to the Open Medicine Foundation with a decade of experience working in journalism, communications, and development, most recently leading digital communications for Sonoma Land Trust, a nationally award-winning environmental nonprofit. As Development and Communications Manager , she creates and implements strategies to raise awareness of OMF’s mission and grow its philanthropic base, so that OMF can accelerate research into chronic, complex diseases. Heather is currently based out of Washington D.C.…

Rebecca Handler, Communications Specialist

Rebecca Handler studied cognitive neuropsychology with a concentration in communications and began at OMF as a volunteer & community ambassador in 2017 after developing a sudden onset of ME / CFS in 2015. Rebecca’s job at OMF is to help develop & manage relevant content topics to reach and connect with the patient community. She works to publish & share engaging content on social media platforms to optimize audience growth, increase awareness of OMF’s mission, and attract new donations. Rebecca currently lives in Connecticut with…

Janis Maslyk, Administrative Assistant

Janis brings her strong organizational and project management skills to OMF, providing support to many aspects of fundraising and administration. With a bachelor’s degree in Marketing, she has worked in various other industries but enjoys being part of the nonprofit community with a commitment to making the world a better place.

Brent Merritt, Digital Strategist

Brent Merritt is a digital strategist who initially connected with OMF after he witnessed firsthand the devastating impact of ME / CFS and began seeking a way to put his professional experience to use in service of the patient community. He’s now a dedicated part of the OMF team, committed to the mission of ending ME / CFS. Brent holds a master’s degree in strategic communications, and his analysis of digital media and health communications has appeared…

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Myalgic Encephalomyelitis / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME / CFS) Post Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome (PTLDS), Fibromyalgia Leading Research. Delivering Hope.Open Medicine Foundation®

 

Averting a second pandemic:

Open Medicine Foundation leads groundbreaking international study of

Long COVID’s conversion to ME/CFS

AGOURA HILLS, CALIF.  — Open Medicine Foundation (OMF) is leading a large-scale international collaborative study investigating the potential conversion of Post-Acute Sequelae SARS-CoV-2 infection — more commonly known as Long COVID or Post-COVID Syndrome —  to Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS), a chronic, life-altering disease with no known cause, diagnostic test or FDA approved treatments available.

Up to 2.5 million people in the U.S. alone suffer from ME/CFS; the COVID-19 pandemic could at least double that number. An estimated 35 percent of Americans who had COVID-19 have failed to fully recover several months after infection, prompting many to call it “a potential second pandemic.”

OMF recognized a familiar health crisis emerging, one with eerie similarities to ME/CFS. This crisis presented a unique opportunity to understand how a viral infection — in this case COVID-19 — may develop into ME/CFS in some patients. The goal is to find targeted treatments for ME/CFS patients and ultimately prevent its onset in people infected with SARS-CoV-2 or other infections.

The federal government is only now investing in Post-COVID research, with no focus on its connection to ME/CFS. OMF has already engaged researchers for the largest-scale study of its kind, solely supported by private donors who have contributed over one million dollars to date. When fully funded, the five million dollar, three-year study will be conducted across the globe at OMF funded Collaborative Research Centers, led by some of the world’s top researchers and ME/CFS experts.

BACKGROUND

In a significant percentage of patients, infections preceded their development of ME/CFS.  For example, according to the CDC about one in ten infected with Epstein-Barr virus, Ross River virus, or Coxiella burnetti develop symptoms that meet the criteria for ME/CFS.

THE STUDY

The ability to follow the development of ME/CFS from a known viral infection is unprecedented to date and crucial to researchers’ understanding of the disease. The focus of this study is to find the biological differences between persons returning to good health after COVID-19 and persons who remained ill more than six months after infection and developed ME/CFS.  Understanding these alterations in key pathways can lead to groundbreaking discoveries including new biomarkers, drug targets, and prevention and treatment strategies.

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About Open Medicine Foundation

Established in 2012, Open Medicine Foundation leads the largest, concerted worldwide nonprofit effort to diagnose, treat, and prevent ME/CFS and related chronic, complex diseases such as Post Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, and Post COVID. OMF adds urgency to the search for answers by driving transformational philanthropy into global research. We have raised over $28 Million from private donors and facilitated and funded the establishment of five prestigious ME/CFS Collaborative Research Centers around the world. To learn more, visit www.omf.ngo.

CONTACT:

Heather Ah San

Development and Communications Manager

1-650-242-8669

heather@omf.ngo