Director of oncology wins Lane Adams Award


Karline Peal, 37, experienced cancer’s influence firsthand as a young adult when her mother was diagnosed with the disease.

Since then, Peal, Northwestern Hospital System’s director of oncology, has been involved with fundraisers such as the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.

Her exceptional work with cancer patients has earned her the Lane Adams Award, a national award from the American Cancer Society.
Now she has taken the next in a long line of steps to fight cancer, by becoming involved in the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Prevention 3 (or CPS-3), a nationwide study on the disease’s causes.

Peal has helped her hospital system and community to get involved in the study and calls for others to do the same. Unlike other cancer studies, CPS-3 aims to track those without cancer through 20 years of their life to find the roots of the disease, and, hopefully, stop it in its tracks.

What is the study about?
Cancer Prevention Study 3 is about finding the causes of cancer. You have to take a survey online. It’s supposed to take 40 minutes but it took me 20 minutes to fill out. It’s about your living habits, what you do, exercise, what you eat. You make an appointment and they take a blood sample.

It’s a clinical trial, strictly run, so that’s why it’s so important to have an appointment. They take a blood sample and the amount of research that they can do with it is endless.
So many of the people that have signed up have been white women, but we need men and minorities to sign up as well. There’s not enough information unless more men and minorities get involved.
It’s really a prevention study. That way they can say that you haven’t been exercising, or that’s what you’ve eaten, and that’s all something that you’ve got in common.

Why is the study so important?
It’s so important because it might not cure our generation – the people we need to cure are between 30 and 60 years old – but it’s about our children and our children’s children. It’s about getting information to the researchers. It’s about getting information now to the people who know what to look for.

What findings do you hope to get?
Finding information for what causes cancer. Is it environmental? Genetic? CPS-1 is when they found a link between smoking and lung cancer. Looking at it now, it’s like, of course. Maybe the cure is something right in front of us, now. That’s why its so important to be involved.
The kind of neat thing about it is that every two years they’re going to send out a survey asking about your habits. That’s the really neat thing about being involved in the study. You’re going to be informed about their involvement, and know what’s going on.
It’s the first time they’re collecting blood from people without cancer. It’s like they’re waiting for people to get cancer. So many people get cancer, now. At least we’re going to contribute to preventions in the future.

Why are you participating in this study?
My mom lived for about four months after she was diagnosed, and then she passed away. That’s why it’s so important for me personally to be involved in this study. I don’t want that to happen to my family and my children.
They might find research on people who don’t get cancer. Like, why didn’t you get cancer? I’m doing it for them, and for our future.
I’m very involved in our hospital. I’m trying to get out to the communities and get people more involved.

Did losing your mother lead you into becoming the Director of Oncology for the Northwestern Hospital System?
It was interesting, because I had been accepted into my [radiation therapy] program at Indiana University, and a month later she was diagnosed. I think it was something that God led me to. It provided the support I needed to get through those early years.
I know what it’s like for the patients. I used to drive her to her treatments. I used to pull over on the side of the road to let her throw up. I used to give her her shots. I know how it affects a family. I know what the patients are going through, and I think that that’s something that really helps to connect me to the patients and help them better.

How do you participate in the study?
It’s really going to, signing up to make an appointment, and they have different times to fit different schedules. It’s a commitment. Donor supplies are being supplied for those appointments, so you need to show up. Other than that, they take blood, and you fill out about a 20-40 minute lifestyle questionnaire.

Who can participate in the study?
You have to be 30-65, and never have been diagnosed with a cancer. They will take you if you’ve had a basal or squamous cell, but not melanoma.
How many people are you hoping to enroll in the study?
I committed to about 175 at each of my two host sites [in Grayslake and Lake Forest]. Each host sites commit to about 175 to 200 participants. We really need to fill up the sites to not waste the donor’s resources, and, obviously, to help the study.
If you can’t enroll, please tell your family and friends to enroll. It’s groundbreaking research if you think about it, and who doesn’t want to be part of that?
We want to be cancer free. “We want more birthdays,” as the American Cancer Society says.

To enroll, visit You can enroll in one of the following locations at the designated time and date.
Advocate Condell Medical Center
8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Tuesday, June 25
West Tower Rooms 2 and 3, 801 S. Milwaukee Ave., Libertyville
Vista Medical Center East, 6:30 to 10 a.m., Friday June 21 and 2 to 5 p.m., Wednesday June 26 Ground Floor Conference Room, 1324 N. Sheridan Road, Waukegan
Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital Friday June 21, 2013, 6:30 to 10 am; 2 to 5:30p.m., Wednesday, June 26; 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Thursday, June 27
Women’s Center – Iris Lily Room, 660 N. Westmoreland Road, Lake Forest
Thursday, June 27, 2013, 11:00 am – 3:30 pm

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Cancer research volunteers sought in Glenview

American Cancer Society to host enrollment at Glenbrook Hospital

by Glenview Lantern Staff
June 03, 2013

As it celebrates its 100th birthday, the American Cancer Society is looking to local residents to help finish the fight against cancer by reaching full enrollment in a historic research study.

Cancer Prevention Study-3 will give scientists a better understanding of cancer causes and prevention.

The society is looking for local men and women between the ages of 30-65 from various racial/ethnic backgrounds with no personal history of cancer to help reach full enrollment of at least 300,000 people.

The opportunity for residents to enroll in CPS-3 will take place at NorthShore Glenbrook Hospital, 2100 Pfingsten Rd., from 7:30–11:30 a.m. on June 27

Signing up requires a one-time in-person visit to read and sign a consent form, complete a survey, have your waist measured, and give a small non-fasting blood sample like what you’d do during a routine doctor visit.

Participants will also complete a more detailed survey at home and will continue to receive periodic follow-up surveys in the future that researchers will use to look for more clues to cancer’s causes.

“Many individuals diagnosed with cancer struggle to answer the question, ‘what caused my cancer?’ In many cases, we don’t know the answer,” said Dr. Alpa V. Patel, principal investigator of CPS-3. “CPS-3 will help us better understand what factors cause cancer, and once we know that, we can be better equipped to prevent cancer.”

CPS-3 is the latest addition to the Society’s groundbreaking cancer prevention studies, which have been instrumental in helping identify major factors that can affect cancer risk. Researchers say CPS-3 holds the best hope of identifying new and emerging cancer risks. But its success depends on members of the community becoming involved. Researchers will use data from CPS-3 to build on evidence from those earlier cancer prevention studies, which began in the 1950s and involved hundreds of thousands of volunteer participants.

“Among other findings, these cancer prevention studies have confirmed the link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer, demonstrated the link between larger waist size and increased death rates from cancer and other causes, and showed the considerable impact of air pollution on heart and lung conditions,” said Dr. Bruce Brockstein, director of the Kellogg Cancer Center at NorthShore University HealthSystem. “Changes in lifestyle over the past several decades as well as a better understanding of cancer make this latest chapter in this lifesaving series of studies a critical part of continuing the progress we’re seeing against the disease.”

For more information or to learn how to become involved with CPS-3, visit, email or call (888) 604-5888.

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Healthy Cells

HealthyCells_CPS-3_2013 article

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Bolingbrook residents wanted in national cancer prevention study

Created: Tuesday, March 26, 2013 12:30 p.m. CDT
BOLINGBROOK — Relay For Life Bolingbrook and Adventist Bolingbook Hospital are teaming up to aid research for the American Cancer Society’s national cancer prevention study.

The agencies are asking Bolingbrook residents between the ages of 30 and 65 who have never been diagnosed with cancer to participate in the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Prevention Study-3. The study seeks to enrol a diverse population of 300,000 people across the U.S. and Puerto Rico.

Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital will host the research study from 2 to 5:30 p.m. April 23. Residents who cannot attend the April 23 study also are invited to another CPS-3 session from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. April 17 at Adventist Midwest Health, Tallgrass Corporate Center.

Both dates are for the same CPS-3 same study, covering the same material and questions.

Participants will be asked to fill out an online survey beforehand and disclose information pertaining to lifestyle, behavioral traits and other health factors.

Upon arrival, participants will be asked to read and sign an informed consent form, complete a brief survey, have their waist circumference measured and give a small blood sample.

For more information or to learn how to become involved with CPS-3, visit, email or call 888-604-5888.

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American Cancer Society seeking volunteers for long-term study

Jennifer HarrisonJennifer Harrison is encouraging friends, family members and co-workers she leaned on for support after being diagnosed with cancer to wage a battle of their own against the disease.

The 42-year-old Springfield woman, a survivor of breast cancer, hopes she can motivate local residents to take part in a nationwide study tracking cancer and other aspects of health in the general population.

“We definitely want to get as many people to enroll as possible,” said Harrison.

Harrison is part of a cadre of volunteers recruited by the American Cancer Society to promote Cancer Prevention Study-3, which began in 2008 and is on track to enroll 300,000 people nationwide by the end of 2013.

The $25 million study will follow participants over the next 20 to 30 years and help scientists understand more about the lifestyle, behavioral, environmental and genetic factors that cause or prevent cancer, according to Elizabeth Jablonski, director of research for the cancer society’s Illinois division.

“It’s an opportunity to participate in cancer prevention for future generations,” she said. “This is the closest a lot of people will get to cancer research.”

The study is accepting people between the ages of 30 and 65 who have never been diagnosed with cancer, not including basal or squamous cell skin cancer. Participants must fill out a detailed form, then spend 20 to 25 minutes at an enrollment event at which a blood sample and waist measurement are taken.

Every two or three years after that, participants will receive shorter surveys to complete.

The detailed form, which can be completed online before the enrollment visit, contains questions about medications the participant is taking, their family history of cancer, lifestyle and other behaviors. All of the data are kept confidential, Jablonski said.

Participants don’t receive any reports on their own blood sample, but they do receive annual newsletters about knowledge gained throughout the course of the study.

Appointments for one of seven Springfield-area enrollment events in May can be made online at, or by calling (888) 604-5888. More information is available at

People who make appointments online gain access to the enrollment form at the same time. Walk-ins are welcome.

Diversity sought

Study organizers hope to enroll 6,500 people statewide and at least 750 in the Springfield area.

The cancer society previously enrolled people in the study through Relay for Life events, but found that enrollees tended to be  white women, Jablonski said. The organization is trying to increase the level of diversity, she said.

State Rep. Marcus Evans Jr., D-Chicago, is using his status as a black man and cancer survivor to encourage minorities to join the study.

Evans, 28, underwent surgery and chemotherapy to treat non-Hodgkins lymphoma after being diagnosed in 2006.

He now volunteers for the cancer society, and CPS-3 is a major focus of his talks to community groups, he said.

“This research is going to save someone’s life 10 or 20 years from now,” he said.

For future generations

Earlier studies by the cancer society have broken new ground.

The Hammond and Horn study in the early 1950s, and Cancer Prevention Study-1, which took place from 1959 to 1972 and involved 1 million people, were among the first major studies to document higher rates of lung cancer-related deaths among smokers.

The studies also confirmed links between second-hand smoke and both lung cancer and heart disease, Jablonski said.

Cancer Prevention Study-2, which enrolled 1.2 million people, began in 1982 and is still going on. It was the first large study of to document how excess weight and obesity shorten life spans and increase a person’s risk of dying from cancer.

Harrison said she was diagnosed two years ago with an aggressive form of breast cancer on her right side that had spread to some lymph nodes.

She decided to have both breasts removed as a precautionary measure. Chemotherapy treatments resulted in her losing all of her hair, and what used to be straight, medium-brown hair has grown back curly.

Harrison said CPS-3 may lead to scientific discoveries that make cancer less of a worry for her and husband Jim’s 7-year-old daughter, Ella.

“I want to find a cure or something that prevents cancer before my daughter becomes an adult, or for her kids,” Harrison said.

Dean Olsen can be reached at 788-1543. Follow him


Enrollment in Cancer Prevention Study-3

*Noon to 4:30 p.m. May 1 in Room A1 of the Stratton Office Building, 401 S. Spring St.

*9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. May 14 at Lake Level Conference Rooms A, B and C at the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Illinois State Fairgrounds.

*1:30 to 5 p.m. May 15 and 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. May 17 in Robbins Woerner Conference Center at the Simmons Cancer Institute, 315 W. Carpenter St.

*2:30 to 6 p.m. May 16 in the lobby of the Sangamon County Department of Public Health, 2833 South Grand Ave. E.

*4 to 7:30 p.m. May 21 in the high school cafeteria at Taylorville High School, 815 W. Springfield Road, Taylorville.

*2 to 5:30 p.m. May 22 in the lobby of Kerasotes YMCA, 4550 W. Iles Ave.

American Cancer Society officials are holding a kickoff event for people who may want to volunteer to promote Cancer Prevention Study-3. The event will begin at 6 p.m. March 26 at the Simmons Cancer Institute at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, 315 W. Carpenter St.

Volunteers who want to attend are asked to inform the cancer society by March 22 and contact Stephen Hunt at 523-4503, ext. 3, or

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Volunteers Sought for Cancer Study

CRYSTAL LAKE – Amy Moerschbaecher wants to do her part to fight cancer, and not just because she’s the director of oncology services at Centegra Health System.

“My husband is a six-year cancer survivor, and my brother is a three-year cancer survivor,” she said Tuesday. “So if I can do something to help prevent cancer in the future, I want to do that.”

That’s why Moerschbaecher is one of 400 McHenry County residents to sign up so far to participate in an American Cancer Center prevention study that seeks to change the face of cancer for future generations.

Centegra is partnering with the American Cancer Society on the study. Local men and women between the ages of 30 and 65 who have never been diagnosed with cancer still can sign up today. To participate, individuals first should register at, where you also will schedule an enrollment appointment. Appointments are available from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. today at Centegra Hospital – McHenry. For those who don’t want to register online, limited walk-ins will be accepted today at Centegra Hospital – McHenry. Walk-ins should expect the registration process to take a little longer in person, said Kim Kubiak, Centegra’s senior public relations coordinator. About 600 participants are being sought, and as of Tuesday morning, about 400 had registered, Kubiak said. Besides Moerschbaecher, Centegra CEO Michael Eesley also has registered.

“I’m registered to participate in this important study myself,” Eesley said in a news release. “We’re proud that Centegra is the first health system in Illinois to be invited to partner with the American Cancer Society for this study that should help researchers better understand the lifestyle, environmental and genetic factors that cause or prevent cancer.”

Participants fill out a comprehensive health survey, give blood and be measured around the waist The American Cancer Society will send periodic follow-up surveys and annual newsletters with study updates and results. Periodic follow-up surveys of various lengths will be sent to participants every couple of years. The goal, Moerschbaecher said, is to find lifestyle patterns that might lead to cancer so better preventative care information can be provided in the future.

For information or to learn how to become involved with CPS-3, visit, email, or call 888-604-5888.

Copyright © 2012 Northwest Herald. All rights reserved.

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American Cancer Society Wants People for Study

SPRINGFIELD — Hundreds of people are diagnosed with cancer every day. The American Cancer Society hopes to stop that.

It needs your help to make that happen. The organization is getting ready to launch a major study lasting 20 – 30 years. The research will help cancer prevention.

Everyone in the state is welcome to take part. The more people who sign up, the better.

The ACS will hold informational meetings on the study in Springfield and Champaign next week.

For more information, click here.

To watch video, click here.

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