Affymetrix Honors Greenwood Family with Race the Helix Donation

Affymetrix Honors Greenwood Family with Race the Helix Donation

Race the Helix, an annual 5K race and 1 mile run/walk to benefit the Greenwood Genetic Center (GGC) Foundation received a major gift this week. Affymetrix, a leader in genomics analysis whose mission is to enable the translation of biological knowledge into routine practice, presented $5,000 to Greenwood’s Stephen and Jodi Shenal on Monday. The family, along with GGC representatives Dr. Steve Skinner, Dr. Mike Friez and Dr. Alka Chaubey, traveled to California to participate in a corporate event at the company’s headquarters. The Shenals shared with Affymetrix’s employees, their diagnostic journey with their daughter, Ryleigh, who has a rare chromosomal deletion. Her diagnosis was made at GGC by one of Affymetrix’s chromosomal microarray products.

“It was so beneficial for us to hear the Shenals’ story and see firsthand how our work impacts families in a major way,” said Affymetrix’s CEO, Frank Witney. “This family’s generous spirit toward the Greenwood Genetic Center by raising funds and awareness for their important work is nothing short of inspiring. We are honored to contribute toward those efforts.”

“The GGC Foundation is grateful to Stephen, Jodi and their family, and to Affymetrix for supporting our work,” shared Victoria Hann, Director of Development for the GGC Foundation. “With their generous gift, the Foundation can continue to fulfill the Center’s mission of providing treatment, diagnostic testing, research and education for families, like the Shenals, who are impacted by genetic disorders.”

“We are truly overwhelmed by this gift and by the experience of sharing our story with the employees at Affymetrix,” said Jodi Shenal. “Stephen and I are honored to talk about the amazing work done at GGC, and we are humbled by the outpouring of support that we experience each year through Race the Helix.”

The 4th annual Race the Helix will be held on Saturday, October 4th at 8am at the Greenwood Genetic Center. Registration is available at

Photo L-R: Kim Caple and Mindy Lee-Olsen of Affymetrix, Tyler Shenal, Alka Chaubey (GGC), Jodi Shenal, Mike Friez (GGC), Ryleigh Shenal, Stephen Shenal, Affymetrix CEO Frank Witney, and Steve Skinner (GGC).

Meet Makayla Gunn

Makayla was diagnosed with Rett Syndrome in April of 2015 at the age of two. At about 18 months, we noticed she had started some repetitive hand motions, and her pediatrician was a little concerned that she did not have many words. She had learned some sign language, and was saying ‘mama’ and ‘dada’, but that was it. Then she suddenly stopped all of that. At her 2 year old check-up, the pediatrician referred us to BabyNet, SC’s early interve...

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