SOURCE: Lupus Foundation of America

Lupus Foundation of America

September 09, 2015 10:59 ET

Actor Ian Harding to Grand Marshal the Walk to End Lupus Now™ in Los Angeles

More Than 6,000 Los Angeles Residents Participate in the World's Largest Lupus Walk Fundraising Program

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - September 09, 2015) - Lupus activist and actor Ian Harding of ABC Family's Pretty Little Liars will serve as the Grand Marshal at the Walk to End Lupus Now™ event in Los Angeles at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, September 26. Harding will cut the opening ceremony ribbon and lead the more than 6,000 walkers around Exposition Park to raise money for lupus research and education programs, increase awareness of the disease and rally public support for those who feel its brutal impact.

Harding has participated in the Los Angeles Walk to End Lupus Now for the past four years in support of his mother, who is living with lupus. He will be joined by Kathy Vara, NBC4 Co-Anchor, NBC4 Weekend News, and Whit Johnson, NBC4 Co-Anchor, Today in LA, who are back again as our event co-emcees. NBC4Southern California is the media sponsor for the Los Angeles Walk.

"I'm honored to support the Lupus Foundation of America and truly grateful for the overwhelming support I have received from my fans over the last few years," said Harding. "Raising funds for lupus research is vital, and I will continue to do my part so that together we can create a future with no lupus."

Actress/singer Tichina Arnold, current star of the STARZ' Network series Survivors Remorse, will also perform at the opening ceremonies. Tichina is participating in the Los Angeles Walk in support of her sister, Zenay Arnold, who is living with lupus.

An estimated 1.5 million Americans and 5 million people worldwide have lupus. Despite the widespread prevalence of lupus, research on the disease has remained underfunded, relative to its scope and devastation. And only one drug has ever been developed specifically to treat lupus and approved by the US Food and Drug Administration.

Every step taken and dollar raised supports the Lupus Foundation of America's mission to improve the quality of life for all people affected by lupus.

Registration for the walk is open online at walktoendlupus.org/losangeles. Participants can also register onsite at Exposition Park beginning at 7:30 a.m. the day of the event. Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals is a national sponsor of Walk to End Lupus Now. AstraZeneca is a regional sponsor of the Los Angeles Walk event.

About Lupus

Lupus is an unpredictable and misunderstood autoimmune disease that ravages different parts of the body. It is difficult to diagnose, hard to live with and a challenge to treat. Lupus is a cruel mystery because it is hidden from view and undefined, has a range of symptoms, strikes without warning, and has no known cause and no known cure. Its health effects can range from a skin rash to a heart attack. Lupus is debilitating and destructive and can be fatal, yet research on lupus remains underfunded relative to diseases of similar scope and devastation.

About the Lupus Foundation of America

The Lupus Foundation of America is the only national force devoted to solving the mystery of lupus, one of the world's cruelest, most unpredictable and devastating diseases, while giving caring support to those who suffer from its brutal impact. Through a comprehensive program of research, education, and advocacy, we lead the fight to improve the quality of life for all people affected by lupus. Learn more about the Lupus Foundation of America at lupus.org. For the latest news and updates, follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

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