When the original Moon Shots Program was brilliantly proposed by Dr. Ron DePinho, I was elated. Our city and the Texas Medical Center have prospered and dramatically expanded due to the vision and courage of our leaders.
Pancreatic cancer was not included among the disease types selected as inaugural moon shots when the program launched in 2012. Sure, maybe I was a little disappointed. However, I understood why pancreatic cancer wasn't selected initially. Dr. DePinho was clear regarding the MD Anderson decision process. At this point my wife Don Nell and I made a personal contribution to MD Anderson, designating our gift to Dr. Robert Wolff's expertise and judgment. I presumed that pancreatic cancer patients would one day benefit from the research being funded for other cancers. I remembered that I had a pancreatic cancer chemotherapy regimen that was specifically designed for colon cancer patients.
Now that the pilot pancreatic cancer project has been accepted into the Moon Shots Program, I can be assured that moon shot funds will be available for pancreatic cancer research and patient treatment. MD Anderson treats more pancreatic cancer patients by a factor of five times than any other cancer treatment facility in the world. Our country can and must generate funds for cancer. It will come from generous patients and personal philanthropic interests.
My mother and father both died from cancer; I almost did. MD Anderson is the best managed, most experienced and best research and treatment facility in the world. If anyone can end cancer, it is MD Anderson.
Read more at makingcancerhistory.com/tomrushing
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