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The Joan Gaeta Lung Cancer Foundation Donates $12,000 to TakeAimAtCancer.org Cancer Research Fund
Funds specifically to help with M.D. Anderson Cancer Center's BATTLE program. (Biomarker-based Approaches of Targeted Therapy for Lung Cancer Elimination)
TakeAimAtCancer.org was founded by Jeff Wigbels, who was diagnosed with Stage IV non-smokers lung cancer on Oct. 11, 2006, one day before the birth of his second child. Rather than accept the recommended "standard of care," he decided to go to M.D. Anderson Cancer Center based on their world-class reputation and innovative research efforts. There, as a patient in BATTLE, a program designed to match existing cancer drugs to the molecular aspects of an individual patient's tumor, Wigbels embarked on the road to recovery.
Wigbels began treatment in December 2006 under the care of Roy S. Herbst, M.D., Ph.D., and BATTLE co-principal investigator. By August 2008, the tumor in his lung had shrunk to half of its original size and the rest of his body was cancer-free.
"This cutting-edge research must continue," said Wigbels. "It is revolutionizing cancer care and will ultimately raise the standard of care of all oncologists. I'm so grateful for the gift of life Dr. Herbst and his team have given me, and I am committed to supporting Anderson's Institute for Personalized Cancer Therapy for many years to come."
IMPORTANT FACTS ABOUT LUNG CANCER
* Even if you have never smoked, you can get lung cancer.
* 60% of new cases are now diagnosed in non-smokers and former smokers.
* Lung cancer is the #1 cancer killer of both men and women.
* Every three minutes, someone is diagnosed with the disease.
* It kills more people each year than breast cancer, prostate cancer, colon cancer, liver cancer, melanoma, and kidney cancer combined.
* It surpassed breast cancer of the #1 killer of women in 1987.
* The five year survival rate for lung cancer is still only 15% - the same as it was over 35 years ago. By contrast, breast cancer now has a five year survival rate of well over 85% and prostate cancer has over a 99% survival rate.
ABOUT THE TAKEAIMATCANCER.ORG CANCER RESEARCH FUND
The mission of TakeAimAtCancer.org is to raise funds to support groundbreaking research and make individualized, targeted therapy available to more people battling cancer. 100% of all proceeds go directly to fund research.
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ABOUT THE JOAN GAETA LUNG CANCER FOUNDATION
Established in the fall of 2007, The Joan Gaeta Lung Cancer Foundation was created to raise awareness, to educate the public, and to be an advocate for research. They also strive to eliminate the stigma of lung cancer and support survivors and their loved ones in the local community.
A lifelong non-smoker, Joan Gaeta was a devoted wife, teacher, and mother of five. Diagnosed in early 2004, she fought a three and a half year battle before succumbing to the cancer in July of 2007.
If you would like more information about this foundation and this annual event - or to schedule an interview with a board member - please call 404-939-3507 or send an e-mail to gaetafoundation@