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My very great thanks, Jennifer. For the donation and for the plug.

One correction, and I'm sure the error is totally mine, "medulloblastoma" is most common malignant brain tumor in children; what my cousin had is "neuroblastoma" and is a rarer cancer, is of the nervous system, and is not always brain-affecting.

But the event is amazing, and everyone should check out a local event an at least go and have a good time watching grown-ups having a good time for the benefit of sick children.

Thanks again,

Great post, Jennifer.
There's so much happening in drug development and delivery it's almost impossible to cover it too much.
Your last sentence really hits home. For what it's worth, I wrote on my personal blog about my introduction to kids and neuroblastomas ( Cancers are so mysterious, so elusive, but their effects, the collateral damage, is very real. Here's to the folks at St. Baldrick's.

It's devil's bargain. The costs of the new therapies, especially the genomics and biologicals like antiangiogenic agents(google Judah Volkman) are astronomical. For common breast cancers , especially in Jewish women, the test to see which treatments might work costs $3000.And the imaging which Jennifer pictures is very expensive.
The only way we can possibly pay for this is with universal health insurance. Most people are not sick so if they all pay a relatively small amount, there can be a fund which is big enough to stand expenses. The principle is the underlying one of insurance- we dont know if your house is going to burn down, but we know how many will burn in a given year.We dont know if you will get a heart attack, but we do know how many there will be in a given year.
Obviously we need a Democratic president, but both Clinton and Obama's plans keep for-profit insurance companies, which have to show increasing profits to stockholders every year.So they try not to pay doctor fees or patient benefits.

"Now the researchers are trying a new twist: treating the mouse T-cells with radioactive elements, then injecting them into the neuroblastoma, in hopes of achieving small-dose, targeted radiation to the cancer site."

Hopefully the mouse cells have a higher radiation tolerance than the cancer does...


You would like to be closer to Chicago to participate in the fund raising event. You do not have to - by spreading the word in hopes that some of your readers might be moved to also contribute to the cause and your actions, you make a difference. This movement that you are part of ressembles what is described in a terrific book written for ordinary people who want to make connections that create extraordinary outcomes. You would no doubt enjoy this book written by Frances Westley, Brenda Zimmerman and Michael Quinn Patton (2007)- entitled: Getting to maybe.
Perfect reading for you...

Hello Jennifer,

I took the liberty to tag you for one of those internet memes... See my blog's latest post (can't write html here!)


Thanks for any help that you can provide in cancer awareness and funding. I had tranlocation gene leukemia and had chemo therapy for three years. My family was helped by the McDonald house, by providing a place to live while I was being treated away from home. Even when in my case therapy was successful in putting cancer in remission, it is still very hard on the family. Putting ones family and life on hold for three is much more than most can handle. Just think about it. Enjoyed your articles, at least the ones I can understand. Keep up the great work.
Time is motionless
People pass through it

This is a great story, which I unfortunately share when it comes to brain cancer. Almost 15 years ago both my parents were diagnosed within 2 month of each other and died 10 days apart from this dreaded disease.

While you discuss cures and research, which is one end of the spectrum, the other end is learning how to avoid it. You might ask how? We suspect it has to do with Electro magnetic field (EMF) that is given off by electricity and electronics all around us. As it turns out there was an electric line passing close to our house right where my parents slept, right by their heads. As I looked into this all the expert suspect EMF and the conflicting financial institutions says there is no proof. Since, at this time, we need electricity and there is no other viable solution we try and hid our heads in the sand (pun intended).

Let me share a parallel story we all understand now. About 40 years ago when my father would give my older cousin the car we might go away for a weekend with some of his friends -- they all smoked, I did not. We are driving and I asked everyone to put out the cigarettes because it was unhealthy. Their response was no it is not, we debated it and they finally said there is no proof. I suffered in a smoke filled car while the whole industry protected their pocketbooks. I didn’t need all the fancy studies to know that my eyes were burning and had trouble keeping them open. I knew this is no good for me.

Let’s get back to the science of EMF. If you take a nail, wrap a wire around it, and run electricity through it it becomes magnetized. Polarizing the nail forcing positive in one direction and negative in the other causes magnetism. The brain cells need to function, which it can’t when it is stretched. What would happen if you were tied up, stretched out, and had a 3 year-old playing with an open box cutter right near you? You wouldn’t be able to protect yourself or the child. The body and cells are constantly being invaded but the cell system as well as the immune system keeps knocking it out. In the case of the cells and the immune system being stretched they can’t protect themselves.

Why is this all relevant? The various companies that their products or services produce EMF would either need to protect us or admit they are responsible will not do so because the money causes them to rationalize money above human life. We are all human and we all understand it, however we can’t and shouldn’t condone it. If they at least admitted the problem people would take steps to protect themselves. Incidentally, if the industry cared more about their customers they would realize they could protect us and still make a profit but that means making another investment.

The industry responds there is no proof “explain it to us scientifically” guess what they have a point but no one could explain gravity either but we don’t walk out of buildings unless we are planning on using gravity to help us accomplish our means.

The big problem is the legal system supports that type of thinking and to the credit of the medical industry and scientists they use statistics as a tool. So we have a conflict of interest and it is time to move cautiously and quickly to protect society.

A big thanks to Jennifer and CPP readers. My team is really close to our goal of $30,000! I can't thank everyone enough. If you want to contribute, you can hit the linkin Jennifer's post or go here:

Thanks again!


For Tom: There is very little science to support your contentions about adverse health effects of EMFs. See the latter part of a post I wrote a year ago on the subject:
"Ghost in the Machine"

More generally, I would advise potential commenters not to attempt to peddle pseudoscience here.... the readership is pretty darned science-savvy, and more than capable of eviscerating poor arguments hampered by lack of data (personal anecdotes don't count as actual data). I'm just sayin'....

Congrats to Matt and his team for nearly reaching their goal! We expect pics of your newly shaved head!!

Congratulations Matt - Great cause! Great action!

my sister is down with brain tumor and the treatment cost is astronomical. she is at stage 3 now. the entire family has practically mortaged everyting of valuable for the treatment. Not too sure as to where else i can seek for help.

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    Physics Cocktails

    • Heavy G
      The perfect pick-me-up when gravity gets you down.
      2 oz Tequila
      2 oz Triple sec
      2 oz Rose's sweetened lime juice
      7-Up or Sprite
      Mix tequila, triple sec and lime juice in a shaker and pour into a margarita glass. (Salted rim and ice are optional.) Top off with 7-Up/Sprite and let the weight of the world lift off your shoulders.
    • Listening to the Drums of Feynman
      The perfect nightcap after a long day struggling with QED equations.
      1 oz dark rum
      1/2 oz light rum
      1 oz Tia Maria
      2 oz light cream
      Crushed ice
      1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
      In a shaker half-filled with ice, combine the dark and light rum, Tia Maria, and cream. Shake well. Strain into an old fashioned glass almost filled with crushed ice. Dust with the nutmeg, and serve. Bongos optional.
    • Combustible Edison
      Electrify your friends with amazing pyrotechnics!
      2 oz brandy
      1 oz Campari
      1 oz fresh lemon juice
      Combine Campari and lemon juice in shaker filled with cracked ice. Shake and strain into chilled cocktail glass. Heat brandy in chafing dish, then ignite and pour into glass. Cocktail Go BOOM! Plus, Fire = Pretty!
    • Hiroshima Bomber
      Dr. Strangelove's drink of choice.
      3/4 Triple sec
      1/4 oz Bailey's Irish Cream
      2-3 drops Grenadine
      Fill shot glass 3/4 with Triple Sec. Layer Bailey's on top. Drop Grenadine in center of shot; it should billow up like a mushroom cloud. Remember to "duck and cover."
    • Mad Scientist
      Any mad scientist will tell you that flames make drinking more fun. What good is science if no one gets hurt?
      1 oz Midori melon liqueur
      1-1/2 oz sour mix
      1 splash soda water
      151 proof rum
      Mix melon liqueur, sour mix and soda water with ice in shaker. Shake and strain into martini glass. Top with rum and ignite. Try to take over the world.
    • Laser Beam
      Warning: may result in amplified stimulated emission.
      1 oz Southern Comfort
      1/2 oz Amaretto
      1/2 oz sloe gin
      1/2 oz vodka
      1/2 oz Triple sec
      7 oz orange juice
      Combine all liquor in a full glass of ice. Shake well. Garnish with orange and cherry. Serve to attractive target of choice.
    • Quantum Theory
      Guaranteed to collapse your wave function:
      3/4 oz Rum
      1/2 oz Strega
      1/4 oz Grand Marnier
      2 oz Pineapple juice
      Fill with Sweet and sour
      Pour rum, strega and Grand Marnier into a collins glass. Add pineapple and fill with sweet and sour. Sip until all the day's super-positioned states disappear.
    • The Black Hole
      So called because after one of these, you have already passed the event horizon of inebriation.
      1 oz. Kahlua
      1 oz. vodka
      .5 oz. Cointreau or Triple Sec
      .5 oz. dark rum
      .5 oz. Amaretto
      Pour into an old-fashioned glass over (scant) ice. Stir gently. Watch time slow.