Pelotonia: United To Chase Cancer Down

August 7, 2014 3:30 am

One goal: end cancer.

After beginning in 2009 as a grassroots bike tour to raise money for innovative and life-saving cancer research at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James), Pelotonia has become an annual, nationally acclaimed cycling experience that draws together thousands of riders, volunteers, patients, families and friends who want to stamp out cancer forever.

“These desperately needed Pelotonia dollars fuel cancer research in four critical areas,” says Michael A. Caligiuri, MD, director of the Comprehensive Cancer Center and CEO of The James. “They help us recruit talented physicians and scientists who specialize in every kind of cancer; fund innovative research ideas that create those ‘A-ha!’ discovery moments in cancer prevention and treatment strategies; support Pelotonia fellowships for impassioned students who are making their life’s career all about curing cancer; and purchase much-needed, state-of-the-art equipment that is so important for our patients and scientists.”

Pelotonia dollars in the past five years have supported studies that are delivering a powerful one-two punch to cancer. For example: OSUCCC – James researchers contributed to studies of a hereditary genetic condition that causes colon cancer in families. Through a Pelotonia-funded study, doctors can screen colorectal cancer patients and their biological relatives for this condition and notify those have it – enabling them to take precautions that may prevent a cancer occurrence.

Pelotonia funds also have supported studies of a breakthrough drug that significantly extends the lives of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and mantle cell lymphoma (MCL). The drug recently received FDA approval for treating certain patients with CLL and MCL.

“There are numerous examples of how every Pelotonia dollar leads to answering an important question, moving the field faster, or making a life-saving difference,” Caligiuri says.

Plus, with $2 million a year dedicated to the Pelotonia Fellowship Program, a wide variety of undergraduate, graduate, PhD and postdoctoral students can continue applying their talents directly to research.

“We need to keep these young, brilliant minds in the fight with us,” says Caligiuri.  “Government funding for cancer research continues to drop every year, driving these bright scientific minds away. By providing these scientists with the dollars they need for their research, we’re enabling vital discoveries to continue to be made. We need these talented young cancer researchers to help us get this job done.”

Every Pelotonia dollar raised goes directly to the cancer fight at the OSUCCC – James. This year’s fundraising total already exceeds $10 million, and the more than 7,200 riders continue to bring in more as the event gears up for this weekend.  Pelotonia has raised more than $70 million since it began.

“We know that there is no routine cancer,” Caligiuri says. “We also know that, ultimately, with the help of everyone getting involved with Pelotonia in any way they can, we will chase down cancer together. And we will end it.”

 

Show your support for life-saving cancer research. Ride, donate or volunteer for Pelotonia by visiting http://www.pelotonia.org.

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