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Relay For Life funds boost cancer research

Cancer Council NSW has labelled Orange 2016 Relay For Life an incredible achievement, the tally has reached $94,000!

Photo by: Steve Gosch
Article by: Janice Harris at Central Western Daily

With the Stars of Orange Dance for Cancer the next fundraiser on the agenda and other events planned in the region this year, the annual contribution from Orange and district residents will make it possible to fund research programs at several high-profile research institutes and universities across the country.

In fact, since the start of the year, Cancer Council NSW has allocated more than $10 million to a range of children’s and adult’s cancer research projects at the University of Sydney, University of Newcastle and the University of NSW.

As well, research projects are being undertaken at the Children’s Medical Research Institute, the Garvan Institute of Medical Research, which has three research programs underway, the Children’s Cancer Institute and the Lowy Cancer Research Centre.

Cancer survivor, volunteer and Orange Relay for Life committee chairman Terry Betts said he was staggered by the amount of money raised by Orange and district residents for the Cancer Council, in particular at the Relay for Life.

“When I look at all these research projects, that’s why I am so committed to volunteering for the Cancer Council,” he said.

“When you think that in the last 30  years survival rates for cancer have increased by 20 per cent, that is amazing,” he said.

“I want to thank the people of Orange, you do a brilliant job.”

A NSW Cancer Council spokesperson said although it had more requests for funding for research and programs than was available, grant applications were encouraged across all areas of cancer research, including clinical trials.

“Applications are subject to the rigorous assessment process that looks at the scientific merit of a research project and its potential impact on the community,” the spokesperson said.

Where the money goes

* Professor Murray Norris, Children’s Cancer Institute, $2.2 million, investigating new methods to prevent and treat leukaemia.

*Professor John Wiggers, University of Newcastle, $2.2 million, helping to reduce cancer risk factors.

* Associate Professor Clare Wakefield, University of NSW, $2.2 million, interventions to support paediatric cancer survivors and their families.

* Professor Rob Sanson-Fisher, University of Newcastle, $2.2 million to implement a system of patient-centred care across NSW cancer treatment units.

* Garvan Institute of Medical Research, $360,000 for Professor Stuart Tangye’s research preventing people with immune deficiencies from developing lymphoma; $350,000 for Professor Peter Croucher’s research on osteoporosis drugs causing myeloma (bone cancer) cells to hibernate within the bone; $353,000 for Professor Susan Clarke to identify breast cancers that are resistant to treatment

* Associate Professor Hilda Picket, Children’s Medical Research Institute $357,000 for research on blocking the growth of cancer cells.

* Professor Xu Dong Zhang, University of Newcastle, $351,787 for research on helping the immune system find and destroy skin cancer cells.

* Professor David Gottleib, University of Sydney, $360,000 for improving outcomes for patients with acute leukaemia.

* Dr Phoebe Phillips, Lowy Cancer Research Centre, $360,000 to find a new way to target pancreatic cancer and prevent tumour growth.

* Professor Roger Reddel, Children’s Medical Research Institute, $360,000 for preventing cancer cell immortality, using drugs that stop tumour growth and trigger cancer cell death.

* Dr Mustafa Khasraw, University of Sydney, $360,000, improves survival for brain cancer patients.