January is National Cervical Cancer Awareness Month. According to the National Cancer Institute, last year this terrible disease caused more than 4,000 deaths in the U.S., and nearly 13,000 new cases emerged.
It’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and the pink ribbons (and shirts, and stickers) are out in force. And the Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium (BTCRC) is commemorating the month by highlighting innovative and important work the universities of the conference are doing year-round to fight this terrible disease.
Spring Break has slowed down activities on many university campuses recently, but members of the Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium (BTCRC), an organization that unites the cancer centers and medical schools of all the universities in the conference, haven’t slowed down in their fight against this destructive disease.
A couple of weeks ago, basketball coaches across the Big Ten Conference made a fashion statement of sorts. They donned snazzy sneakers on the hardwood, even though many of them were wearing suits and ties, to take part in Coaches vs. Cancer, a nationwide campaign that annually draws public attention to advocacy and fundraising efforts around this severe disease.
Claiming more than half a million lives per year, cancer is the second-leading cause of death in the United States, right behind heart disease. More people die from some form of cancer than the next three causes (chronic respiratory diseases, stroke and various accidents) combined.
Every Big Ten school has doctors and students doing research into the causes and potential cures of cancer. Those efforts are now part of a coordinated system of research known as the Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium.