Join the Movement and Stand Up To Cancer

Reading time: 3 – 5 minutes

Stand Up To Cancer ( is an initiative to raise philanthropic dollars for accelerating ground breaking research through an unprecedented collaboration uniting the major television networks, entertainment industry executives, celebrities and prominent leaders in cancer research and patent advocacy [1]. On Friday, September 5th, at 8:00 pm EST and PST, ABC, CBS and NBC will donate one hour of simultaneous commercial-free prime time for a national fundraising event.

In 2008, over half a million Americans are expected to die of cancer, more than 1,500 people a day [2]. Cancer is the second most common cause of death in the U.S., accounting for 1 in every 4 deaths. Nevertheless, since 2003 the U.S. government’s cancer research budget has been cut every single year. This lack of funding stifles innovation and delays or halts treatments from getting to patients. This has become a critical issue: I’ve written previously about Flat Funding of Biomedical Research and The Threat to America’s Health and the Funding of Childhood Cancer, NF Research in Jeopardy.

The purpose of Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) is to reverse the downward trend in funding of cancer research, to make cancer part of the national debate and to enable cutting-edge research aimed at finding a cure to all types of cancer, including breast cancer, prostate cancer, colorectal cancer, lung cancer, liver cancer, neurofibromatosis and more.

The group leading SU2C includes CBS Evening News anchor and managing editor Katie Couric, Sherry Lansing, Laura Ziskin, Ellen Ziffren, the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF), the Noreen Fraser Foundation and the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR).

The landmark television event, Stand Up To Cancer, is designed to rally the public and raise millions of dollars for cancer research. 100% of the money raised goes towards accelerating the course of cancer research. Funds will be streamlined through an innovative funding and distribution model directly to scientists. The following video, “Where the Money Goes”, provides an explanation of SU2C’s research funding model.

You can read more at the Stand Up To Cancer web site. For microbloggers, you can also follow SU2C on Twitter.

This historic television event to enable cancer research cures will simultaneously air, commercial free, on all three major networks Friday, September 5th at 8:00 pm EST and PST. I’m actively involved in cancer research and can attest to the difficulty in getting funding. I encourage you to tune in and support the next generation of groundbreaking cancer research.


  1. ABC, CBS, NBC announce historic collaboration to “stand up to cancer”. Stand Up To Cancer press release. 2008 May 28.
  2. Cancer Facts & Figures 2008. American Cancer Society. Atlanta, Ga. 2008.
About the Author

Walter Jessen, Ph.D. is a Data Scientist, Digital Biologist, and Knowledge Engineer. His primary focus is to build and support expert systems, including AI (artificial intelligence) and user-generated platforms, and to identify and develop methods to capture, organize, integrate, and make accessible company knowledge. His research interests include disease biology modeling and biomarker identification. He is also a Principal at Highlight Health Media, which publishes Highlight HEALTH, and lead writer at Highlight HEALTH.