The Tragically Hip tour inspires more than $1M for brain cancer research

TORONTO, Sept. 19, 2016 /CNW/ - With donations coming in from across the country and around the world, Sunnybrook Foundation and the Canadian Cancer Society are pleased to announce that through The Tragically Hip's recent tour more than $1 million has been raised so far for brain cancer research in Canada.

Moved by the announcement that Gord Downie was diagnosed with glioblastoma, a form of brain cancer that currently has no cure, thousands of fans joined together to raise funds through events and donations for the Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, and for the Canadian Cancer Society.

From bake sales to raffles to concert viewing parties and ticket sales, thousands of fans have translated their emotional response to Mr. Downie's diagnosis into action that will make a difference to those diagnosed with this life-threatening disease.

To date, almost $800,000 has been donated to the Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research at Sunnybrook. This fund will give brain cancer researchers the tools to help beat brain cancers that are currently unbeatable. Right now, Sunnybrook scientists are investigating new drugs, surgical techniques and genetic therapies. They are using ultrasound to help drugs reach tumours that couldn't be reached before. The funds raised this past summer will help brain scientists conduct ground-breaking research that benefits patients not only across Canada but around the world. 

"At Sunnybrook and at cancer centres across the globe, we are making important advances in brain tumour treatment, and support like this helps us continue our work," said Dr. James Perry, head of neurology at Sunnybrook. "To all those who have donated to brain cancer research, thank you."

The Canadian Cancer Society has received close to $400,000 in honour of Mr. Downie and The Tragically Hip. "We are overwhelmed at how Canadians rallied together this summer and are very thankful for their generosity," said Dr. Siân Bevan, vice-president of research at the Canadian Cancer Society. "These funds will support clinical trials at the Canadian Cancer Trials Group, which is currently supporting six active brain cancer clinical trials, involving 421 patients, testing new ways to treat or manage cancer."

The internationally-renowned Canadian Cancer Trials Group is based out of Queen's University in the band's hometown of Kingston, Ontario. This cooperative oncology group coordinates clinical trials in cancer therapy, supportive care and prevention at cancer centres and hospitals across the country.

Canadians everywhere can continue to raise money to fight glioblastoma by supporting research and innovations in treatments. To donate, please visit or

About Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre is a premier academic health sciences centre, fully affiliated with the University of Toronto, with a vision to invent the future of health care. Our 10,000 staff, physicians and volunteers provide the best care for critical times in the lives of the 1 million patients we see each year. 

About Canadian Cancer Society
The Canadian Cancer Society is a national community-based organization of volunteers whose mission is the eradication of cancer and the enhancement of the quality of life of people living with cancer. When you want to know more about cancer, visit our website or call our toll-free, bilingual Cancer Information Service at 1 888 939-3333.

SOURCE Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

Image with caption: "Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre (CNW Group/Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre)". Image available at:

Image with caption: "Canadian Cancer Society (CNW Group/Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre)". Image available at:

For further information: Alexis Dobranowski, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, 416-480-4040; Camille Beaubien, Canadian Cancer Society, 416-323-7181


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