Frontiers Pelotonia Special Edition 2018

The Director's Perspective

Here we are in 2018, the year to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Pelotonia, the annual grassroots cycling event that raises money for cancer research at Ohio State.

More importantly, we can celebrate what Pelotonia has enabled us to accomplish during this first decade. With federal cancer research funding difficult to obtain, you have stepped up through Pelotonia as riders, virtual riders and donors and, as of Sept. 6, raised more than $173 million since 2009. Here are examples of what we have accomplished together:

Pelotonia funds supported basic and clinical research at Ohio State that led to the approval of ibrutinib by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. This remarkable drug is now available to thousands for the treatment of chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

The Ohio Colorectal Cancer Prevention Initiative (OCCPI) established a statewide network of 50 hospitals to screen newly diagnosed colorectal cancer patients and their biological relatives for an inherited condition that predisposes someone to colorectal, uterine and other cancers.

Beating Lung Cancer in Ohio (BLCIO) is an Ohio-wide study to evaluate the effects of advanced gene testing and expert advice on lung cancer treatment and patient survival, smoking-cessation rates and quality of life.

Ohio Prevention and Treatment of Endometrial Cancer (OPTEC) is a statewide initiative to identify women with uterine cancer whose genetic makeup places them at risk for other types of cancer, and to help match women with uterine cancer to the best treatment.

Pelotonia funds helped establish Ohio State’s Drug Development Institute to accelerate the translation of OSUCCC – James discoveries into new cancer treatments.

Ohio State has a growing digital archive of pathology specimens that is available to cancer investigators worldwide.

The OSUCCC – James co-founded and co-anchors the Oncology Research Information Exchange Network (ORIEN), a collaboration of 18 cancer centers that is speeding the development and delivery of more precise treatments, diagnostic tools and prevention strategies.

The Pelotonia Fellowship Program provides grants to promising undergraduate, graduate, professional and postdoctoral students for conducting cancer research in the labs of faculty mentors.

Pelotonia funds helped support clinical trials that seek better ways to prevent, detect and treat a variety of cancers.

I am grateful to all who play a part in Pelotonia. We look forward to experiencing this great event with you for decades to come and to all that we will accomplish together.

Raphael Pollock, MD, PhD
Director, The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center

Financial Review

2018 was Pelotonia’s 10th year, and the total amount raised by riders, virtual riders and volunteers since 2009 totaled more than $173 million as of Sept. 6.

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Research Highlights

Adult acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is an aggressive form of blood cancer in which large numbers of immature white blood cells accumulate in the bone marrow.

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Training the Next Generation

Each year, the Pelotonia Fellowship Program allots $2 million to support promising Ohio State students in any discipline or level of scholarship who want to conduct cancer research under the guidance of faculty mentors at the OSUCCC – James.

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Clinical Dental Researcher Rides to Help Patients

Researcher Susan Mallery is a lifelong Buckeye. She earned four degrees at Ohio State: a bachelor’s in zoology in 1976, a master’s in exercise physiology in ’78, a doctor of dental surgery in ’81 and a PhD in pathology in ’90.

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Inspiring Innovation

Bold, insightful ideas fuel cancer research, but those ideas will go no further than a researcher’s notebook without funding.

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Medical Oncologist’s Ride Targets Top Cancer Killer

Greg Otterson, MD, a medical oncologist and researcher specializing in lung cancer at the OSUCCC – James, is encouraged by recent progress against this disease, the No. 1 cancer killer worldwide.

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Survivor Shuns Silence to Share Success Story

After being diagnosed with prostate cancer in May 2013 and having it treated with a robotic prostatectomy at the OSUCCC – James, Marc Zehnder of Vandalia, Ohio, had one goal: to “just go on living” while telling his story to almost no one.

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New Hope

Clinical research is research that studies people. It includes clinical trials, which investigate the safety and effectiveness of new therapies, and studies that make observations of people to better understand and ultimately solve a medical problem.

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Statewide Initiatives

Pelotonia funds are helping the OSUCCC – James change the landscape of cancer care by supporting three major statewide initiatives that promote early detection and better outcomes for patients with colorectal, lung and endometrial (uterine) cancers in Ohio.

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Instruments of Discovery

Traditionally, pathologists diagnosed cancer by placing biopsy specimens on glass slides and examining them under a microscope. But glass slides are difficult to store, retrieve, transport and share with colleagues.

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Bringing the Best Research to Ohio State

Some of the brightest minds in cancer research are attracted to the OSUCCC – James and its vast array of resources. Pelotonia dollars help these researchers continue their groundbreaking work when they arrive.

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