Sanford-Burnham News Archive

Team Burnham for Medical Research Races in Phoenix Rock n' Roll Marathon

LA JOLLA, Calif. , January 15, 2007

Team Burnham for Medical Research joined more than 37,000 others in P.F. Chang’s Rock n’ Roll Marathon and Half Marathon in Phoenix, Arizona on Sunday, January 14 to raise awareness and funds for research underway at the Burnham Institute for Medical Research.

Racers experienced unusual below-freezing temperatures at the starting line before running through the streets and freeways of Phoenix, Scottsdale and Tempe. Cheering fans and over 60 live bands set the tempo for the race with music ranging from reggae and jazz to country and rock.

According to Elite Racing, the race organizer of P.F. Chang’s Rock n’ Roll Marathon and other major national running events, Team Burnham was the largest first-year traveling charitable team ever assembled for such an endeavor.

 “The dedication and perseverance of Team Burnham was inspirational,” said John C. Reed, M.D., Ph.D., President and CEO of the Burnham Institute for Medical Research and a veteran marathon runner. “The team raised much-needed funds and created greater public awareness for the Burnham Institute and our current research.”

The team was comprised of many of the Institute’s scientific leadership, as well as friends of the organization from San Diego, Phoenix and across the country. The majority of Team Burnham’s runners had never completed a full marathon.

“I remember the intense feelings and thoughts at each mile,” said Maurizio Pellecchia, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Burnham Institute for Medical Research. ”The uncontainable euphoria at the start, the fear of getting weaker in the middle of the course, and suffering during the last miles and the indescribable sentiment of crossing the finish line. Completing the marathon with Team Burnham was an unforgettable experience.”

Prior to the race, members of Team Burnham completed a grueling six-month training program along with weekly group runs and/or walks with trainers from West Coast Road Runners. While training, each member was asked to raise a minimum of  $3,000 to support the innovative research efforts underway at the Institute. To date, the team has raised over $120,000 from individual gifts from 11 countries as well as corporate sponsors SDG&E and Bernstein Global Wealth Management. These funds will be equally divided among the three research centers at Burnham: NCI Cancer Research Center, Del E. Webb Center for Neurosciences and Aging, and Infectious and Inflammatory Disease Center.

About Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute

Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute is dedicated to discovering the fundamental molecular causes of disease and devising the innovative therapies of tomorrow. Sanford-Burnham takes a collaborative approach to medical research with major programs in cancer, neurodegeneration and stem cells, diabetes, and infectious, inflammatory, and childhood diseases. The Institute is recognized for its National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center and expertise in drug discovery technologies. Sanford-Burnham is a nonprofit, independent institute that employs more than 1,000 scientists and staff in San Diego (La Jolla), Calif., and Orlando (Lake Nona), Fla. For more information, visit us at

Sanford-Burnham can also be found on Facebook at and on Twitter @sanfordburnham.

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