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U of M Softball Coach Helps Fight Cancer Through Saline Study

Carol Hutchins commits to long-term American Cancer Society study with an enrollment site at Faurecia.

University of Michigan head softball coach Carol Hutchins has never been diagnosed with cancer, but she has chosen to take part in a unique cancer prevention study that has an enrollment site in Saline.

The American Cancer Society (ACS) study is open to the public and is accepting signups at a handful of Washtenaw County locations, including Faurecia Saline.

The study, called Cancer Prevention Study-3 (CPS-3), will research people that have never been diagnosed with cancer, and look at factors such as lifestyle, environmental and genetics that cause or prevent cancer.

According to the ACS, the study will enroll a diverse population of 300,000 people across the United States. About 140,000 people are currently enrolled in the study.

Hutchins, an Ann Arbor resident, heard about the study through the ACS program Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, a walk that raises money for the disease. She said student athletes participate in several events like Making Strides throughout the year to raise money to fight cancer. 

“It a way for student athletes to get involved and realize there are things out there that are bigger than all of us,” she said. “We hope to help continue to raise awareness.”

So far, the team has raised $200,000 for Making Strides, and Hutchins said will continue to help by participating in the CPS-3 Study.

To participate in the study, Hutchins signed up through the website and agreed to give blood and fill out several questionnaires. She said she is happy to give her time to the research study.

“It’s a work in progress to eradicate cancer, and this is my way to help,” Hutchins said. “It affects everyone.”

Saline resident Susan Bishop knows what it’s like to fight cancer. Diagnosed twice with breast cancer, Bishop said that while breast cancer is the most common cancer in females, it is the most treatable. She said the American Cancer Society was instrumental in helping her in a variety of ways.

“They gave me referrals I needed to go to doctors, and pointed me in the right direction for assistance,”  Bishop said. The ACS also provided her with wigs, hats and scarves after she lost her hair from chemotherapy.

Bishop feels the study is an important step to continue the fight against cancer by looking at people who have never been diagnosed.

Participants in the study are between the ages of 30 and 65 and provide a waist measurement, blood sample and complete and enrollment survey. Every few years after enrolling in the initial survey, Hutchins will complete a periodic survey.

ACS was founded in 1931, has invested $3.6 billion in research, and is dedicated to raising awareness and leading the fight against cancer. ACS, a nationwide organization also works to prevent cancer and save lives through education, research, education and service. ACS also serves as an advocate for patients.

According to the ACS, more than 1 million people are diagnosed with cancer each year, and there almost 14 million people in the United States that have survived the disease.

For more information about participating in the study call 888-604-5888 or visit www.cancer.org

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