WTAJ Originals: Fighting pancreatic cancer

Daily Originals

This week Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek stunned the world with the news that he has stage 4 pancreatic cancer, a disease that across all stages has only a nine percent survival rate over five years.

He’s vowing to fight the disease.

That’s a vow that’s become the life’s work of a local woman whose husband died of pancreatic cancer in 2011.

“Honest to God, just like Alex Trebek said, you must keep the faith and we will together get it done,” said Cathy Griffith.

Cathy Griffith and her husband, Greg, formed the Griffith Family Foundation shortly after he was diagnosed. Since then, through Sideline Cancer and other events, it’s been raising money for pancreatic cancer research.

“A marshall plan of action needs to be done globally for the early detection of pancreatic cancer,” Griffith said.

She believes it’ll take an act of God for Trebek to overcome stage 4 pancreatic cancer because the treatment options at his stage of the disease are slim.

That’s why she’s pinning her hopes for beating the disease in the future on efforts to develop the early detection test.

She says five research organizations are actively pursuing early detection blood tests for pancreatic cancer.

“What we personally feel here at this foundation…we just want to encourage people to collaborate to get it to the finish line,” said Griffith.

She believes that breakthrough is three to five years away.

You’ll be able to learn more on the latest in pancreatic cancer research at the Griffith Family Foundation’s “I Can” Sideline Pancreatic Cancer Symposium on April 5, at the Penn State Devorris Center. 

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