Director's Message: Cleveland Teams Up To Fight Cancer

At Progressive Field and on televisions across America, all who watched the ninetieth Major League Baseball All-Star Game live from Cleveland, OH felt the power of community in the game’s fifth inning as baseball fans and players alike stood up for those affected with cancer. The moment was part of a campaign by the non-profit organization, Stand Up To Cancer, of which MLB is the founding donor. As fans, camera operators, umpires and players silently rallied, holding placards in memory and honor of loved ones, eyes welled as they looked to the field to see Indians starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco, the Indians’ All-Stars and manager Terry Francona gathered in support of the pitcher currently undergoing treatment for chronic myeloid leukemia (CML).

This moment reminds us what great power we have in our center’s collaboration as a research institution with our hospital consortium members, University Hospitals and Cleveland Clinic. Among our membership we are proud to have three Stand Up To Cancer awardees, Zhenghe John Wang, PhDSanford Markowitz, MD, PhD and Monica Webb Hooper, PhD. Over the past week, we were able to showcase Cleveland as not only an event destination, but one for excellent cancer research and care in the official souvenir magazine available at the game and All-Star weekend festivities.

University Hospitals hematologist-oncologist and Case CCC member Benjamin Tomlinson, MD was recently interviewed by ideastream regarding CML following Carrasco’s diagnosis, noting advances in treatment in the past two decades will likely allow him to return to normal activity relatively quickly whereas in the early 2000s, the condition was associated with a five- to eight- year prognosis.

As we congratulate the American League for another All-Star Game win and Indians’ pitcher Shane Bieber for being named the game’s MVP, we hope that Cleveland and its guests enjoyed the All-Star festivities and will remember the strong spirit of our city, home to the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center and our very own cancer research and care All-Stars as well.