What a show....
While we have no details on last night’s exciting announcement that Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) and St. Baldrick’s will collaborate on a Pediatric Cancer Dream Team, we are thrilled to hear the news!
SU2C featured Pearce Quisenberry during the 2008 broadcast, worked with PAC2 to feature childhood cancer articles in the on-line SU2C magazine (COG update on Pediatric Cancer Research, The Power of Imagination, The Unthinkable, and Rare) in 2009 (no broadcast), and in 2010 featured the 46 Mommas Shave for the Brave on-stage.
Dream Team History
On May 28, 2009, one year from its launch, SU2C announced its first round of 3-year “Dream Team” grants to 5 multi-institutional, cross-disciplinary research teams, totaling $73.6 million. Dream Teams were formed in Epigenetic Therapy, Women's Cancers, Breast Cancer,Tumor Cells Chip, and Pancreatic Cancer. Each Dream Team’s project is “translational” in nature, geared toward moving science from “bench to bedside” where it can benefit patients as quickly as possible.
You and we were disappointed there was no Pediatric Cancer Dream team, and many of you may remember commenting on the SU2C blogs. In July 2009 Diane Balma, SU2C Executive Director explained to PAC2 why a Pediatric Dream Team was not formed:
“I’d like to provide some background on the process through which the Dream Teams were selected. Requirements included that the teams be comprised of expert investigators from different institutions and different disciplines, with the projects leading to patient involvement within a two-to-three year timeframe. In response to the “call for ideas” issued to the scientific community, we received very few pediatric concepts. In fact, only 3 of 237 submissions were for pediatric cancer research. The SU2C Scientific Advisory Committee, assisted by our partner, the American Association for Cancer Research, analyzed each proposal in a way that was rigorous, thorough and fair. In the final evaluation, the Dream Teams with the strongest chance of success were funded.”
Subsequently, there were 2 additional Dream teams formed:
Watch this video to see what the PCF has to say about the Prostate Cancer Dream Team -- this collaboration allows us to do research "that quite honestly would not have been funded by a government agency or by our foundation alone."
SU2C and Childhood Cancer Research
SU2C also funded two rounds of Innovative Innovative Research Grants; each $750,000 over 3 years. Several childhood cancer research projects were funded:
So, headed into last night's show, while SU2C had funded some childhood cancer specific research, it had not formed a Pediatric Dream Team (i.e., larger, higher-dollar, multi-institutional research projects).
Pediatric Dream Team
But tonight's show and the collaborative efforts of St. Baldrick's and SU2C are going to change that. It almost seemed like the majority of the show was focused on kids! Having Julia Roberts caution viewers that cancer "kills a child every four hours in this country." Having 9 year old Justin, St. Baldrick's Ambassador Kid, featured so prominently, having Taylor Swift dedicate her song to Ronan, childhood cancer warrior, and having so many hearts touched by Hilary (diagnosed as a teen) and Avalanna's story are all giant leaps forward for childhood cancer awareness!! Reaching a nationwide audience no matter what channel you tuned to!! Leveraging our 'normal' audience an order of magnitude, or two!!
Just a prime example of Awareness-->Funding-->Research-->Cure.
We think tonight's announcement that St. Baldrick’s and SU2C will work together to create a Pediatric Cancer Dream Team is HUGE!! We congratulate St. Baldrick's from the bottom of our hearts and the top of our spirits. And we can’t wait to tell you more….
In the meantime, you can purchase Ronan by Taylor Swift here. (All donations go to "cancer charities")