21st May 2020
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Scientists Come Up with Innovative Way to Raise Vital Funds for Cancer Research

Leading cancer researchers from across Wales are set to take on a series of mammoth challenges to raise money for charities impacted by the coronavirus crisis.

Led by Dr Alan Parker and his colleagues at Cardiff University, the ‘baton4cancer’ initiative will see Dr Parker and his team attempt to run 1,000 miles in May before handing over a virtual ‘baton’ to other cancer research groups to take on their own fundraising effort.

The Cardiff University research group, who’ve hit headlines around the world with their work on reprogramming viruses to help fight cancer, has already raised more than £1,600 before the challenge started on Friday 1st May.

Dr Parker said:

“As a cancer researcher leading a group at Cardiff University, we are extremely fortunate to be funded by several wonderful charities including Tenovus Cancer Care and Cancer Research Wales, who have been amazing in their support of our research.

“We recognise how difficult these times are for the charity sector and are keen to do our bit and raise much-needed funds for these fantastic charities.

“We came up with the ‘baton4cancer’ initiative, so we can give back to the fundraisers who work so hard to support our work. The idea is that we take the baton from the fundraisers and run researcher-led fundraising activities for those charities.

“My team and I will be looking to run 1000 miles in May. My personal target is an eye-watering 200 miles and for someone who couldn’t run for five minutes at the start of the year, this is going to be quite a challenge!”

Since the coronavirus crisis began Dr Parker and his team have been using their skills as part of the worldwide effort to fight COVID-19. They are currently working on modifying viruses that could be used to administer a vaccine for the virus.

Judi Rhys, Tenovus Cancer Care Chief Executive said:

“We’re incredible grateful to Dr Alan Parker and his team for coming up with this initiative to raise vital funds for the charity.

“We’re experiencing some of the most challenging conditions the charity has faced in its 77-year history, but it’s been heart-warming to see how eager people have been to help out in any way they can.

“Tenovus Cancer Care has a long history of cancer research and we’re very determined to continue to fund vital research for many years to come.”

The proceeds from this challenge will be split between Tenovus Cancer Care and Cancer Research Wales. You can donate or read more about the challenge via the group’s donation page:, and catch up with all their activities on twitter: