Skip to main content
  • Advertise
    Want to Advertise with Us?
    Conquer welcomes advertising and sponsorship collaborations with reputable companies offering high-quality products and services to people affected by cancer.
  • Affiliated Brands
    Academy of Oncology Nurse & Patient Navigators
    The Academy of Oncology Nurse & Patient Navigators (AONN+) is the largest national specialty organization dedicated to improving patient care and quality of life by defining, enhancing, and promoting the role of oncology nurse and patient navigators. Our organization of over 8,900 members was founded in May 2009 to provide a network for all professionals involved and interested in patient navigation and survivorship care services to better manage the complexities of the cancer care treatment continuum for their patients. We view our organization as one consisting of “professional patient advocates” and, to that end, we support and serve our members.
    Journal of Oncology Navigation & Survivorship
    The Journal of Oncology Navigation & Survivorship (JONS) promotes reliance on evidence-based practices in navigating patients with cancer and their caregivers through diagnosis, treatment, and survivorship. JONS also seeks to strengthen the role of nurse and patient navigators in cancer care by serving as a platform for these professionals to disseminate original research findings, exchange best practices, and find support for their growing community.
    The Oncology Nurse-APN/PA
    The Oncology Nurse-APN/PA (TON) provides coverage of the wide spectrum of oncology-related events, trends, news, therapeutics, diagnostics, organizations, and legislation that directly affect hematology/oncology nurses and advanced practitioners involved in healthcare delivery and product utilization. The scope and coverage include a unique presentation of news and events that are shaping the care of patients with cancer.
  • Healthcare Providers
  • Contribute

The Curebound Collaboration

February 2024 Vol 10 No 1
Fernando Tatis, Jr. laughs with Caden.
Padre shortstop Fernando Tatis, Jr., shares a laugh with 2-time cancer survivor, Curebound Kid Caden. Photo credit: Jennifer Siegwart.

Each Spring, thousands of people bike, run, and walk across the iconic Coronado Bridge in San Diego as part of the “Padres Pedal the Cause” fundraising effort. Participants are diverse in many ways, but all share 2 common goals: to honor the people in their lives who have been impacted by cancer and to accelerate research with the power to save lives.

Padres Pedal the Cause is a signature event of Curebound, a San Diego-based 5013c philanthropic organization that raises and invests strategic funding in cancer research projects aimed at accelerating new discoveries to clinical application. This event, originally established by two-time lymphoma survivor Bill Koman and his wife Amy, is a fundraising challenge operated in partnership with the San Diego Padres that has raised more than $21.5 million for early-phase research in San Diego.

Trevor Hoffman and the Friar
Padre Trevor Hoffman and the Friar ready to Pedal the Cause! Photo credit: Curebound

What sets Padres Pedal apart from other fundraisers? All proceeds fund Curebound grants that require collaboration among specialized teams from 6 research institutions in San Diego: UC San Diego Health, Salk Institute, Sanford Burnham Prebys, Rady Children’s Hospital, La Jolla Institute for Immunology, and Scripps Research.

I had the pleasure of speaking with the Chief Science Advisor of Curebound and internationally recognized cancer researcher Ezra Cohen, MD, FRCPSC, FASCO, Chief Medical Officer of Oncology at Tempus Labs, about his involvement in Padres Pedal and the vital work it supports.

Padres Pedal Logo

04.07.24 • Petco Park, San Diego

Dr. Ezra Cohen gives a speech.
Dr. Ezra Cohen, Chief Science Advisor of Curebound, is committed to funding research with the power to saves lives. Photo credit: Curebound

Please tell us a little about Curebound.

My pleasure. Curebound is a charitable organization that raises and invests strategic funding into cancer research in San Diego. In 2023, Curebound awarded $11.5 million in funding across 25 unique grants that range from early-phase exploratory research to advanced projects that are moving to clinical stages with the intent to have patient application within the next 5 years. All of this is made possible through the generosity and commitment of our community, which supports these efforts and progress. Padres Pedal the Cause is one of Curebound’s signature events.

Can you speak to the impact of Padres Pedal the Cause on the San Diego research community?

Yes, this is our 11th year hosting Padres Pedal. In that time, this one event has raised over $21 million for collaborative cancer research; 100% of all participant-raised funds fuel research advances in prevention, detection, treatment, and care in San Diego. We fund promising, innovative oncology research for all types of cancer, adult and pediatric, in alignment with 5 scientific investment pillars: Prevention and Diagnostic Tools, Novel Approaches and New Therapeutic Platforms, Immunotherapies and Personalized Vaccines, Cancer Equities, and Pediatric Cancers.

How does that collaborative research model work?

Collaboration is at the center of Curebound’s unique grantmaking platform, which is based on the belief that the greatest scientific discoveries and their implementation occur through collaboration. All Curebound grants foster collaboration among specialized teams from our research partner institutions, enabling the brightest minds from different scientific disciplines to work together to produce better options and outcomes for patients.

Curebound’s institutional research partners include: Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego Health, Salk Institute, Sanford Burnham Prebys, Rady Children’s Hospital, La Jolla Institute for Immunology, and Scripps Research.

Visit to Learn More

Photo credit: Curebound.

Do you have a success story to share?

I do! Dr. Paula Aristizabal, a research partner scientist at Rady Children’s Hospital, who also leads Curebound’s Cancer Equities committee as a member of the Scientific Advisory Board, recently received an R01 grant from the NIH for nearly $5 million in follow-on funding to expand a pilot program that was funded through a Padres Pedal the Cause Discovery Grant in 2018.

The original early-phase Discovery Grant for this project invested $125,000, which allowed Dr. Aristizabal to launch a peer navigation program aimed at improving diverse pediatric participation in clinical trials, with a focus on reaching Hispanic families who have historically demonstrated an extremely low participation and poorer cancer survival rates than non-Hispanic Whites.

The program is called COMPRENDO (Childhood Malignancy Peer Research Navigation) and has made a significant impact in the past 5 years, not only for the patients enrolled in these clinical trials, but also leading to more holistic impact down the road. With this R01 funding from the NIH, Dr. Aristizabal will continue to expand her research in San Diego and will also add 3 new sites—Boston, San Franciso, and Alabama.

This is a great example of how Curebound seed funding is helping advance research that’s having an impact not only in this community but also across the country. What began as a small pilot grant here in San Diego has taken root and grown at a funding multiplier of 32:1 to expand to multiple regions. Even more important than the financial multiplier is the direct impact this study will have on the families that choose to enroll their children in clinical trials, which quite starkly could mean the difference between life and death.

This is exactly what Padres Pedal the Cause and Curebound were created to do, and it is only through the tremendous support and generosity of our community that we are able to make it happen.

Recommended For You