stepNout draws record participants and funding for TGen's pancreatic cancer research

$1 million raised over 9 years; presenting sponsor Mattress Firm and new venue at Scottsdale Sports Complex trigger huge response for 5K

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - Dec. 19, 2014 - The 9th annual stepNout Run Walk Dash set records for most participants and most dollars raised, benefitting pancreatic cancer research at the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen).

The nearly 1,200 participants at the Nov. 2 event raised $250,000, including $100,000 from Mattress Firm through the company's inaugural role as "presenting sponsor," bringing the total raised by stepNout since it began in 2006 to more than $1 million.

The new venue for the Nov. 2 event - held for the first time at the Scottsdale Sports Complex - was so successful that organizers already have scheduled stepNout's 10th anniversary race at the same location. Mark your calendars for Nov. 1, 2015.

StepNout - which features fun, competitive races for all ages and abilities, including the event's signature 5K run - this year was presided over by Arizona Diamondbacks President and CEO Derrick Hall, the event's honorary chair.

"Thanks to Derrick Hall, Mattress Firm and thousands of TGen supporters, survivors and volunteers, this year's stepNout was our most successful ever," said Erin Massey, Vice President of Development for Cancer Programs at the TGen Foundation. "We are thrilled and thankful for everyone who has helped us raise more than $1 million for our fight against pancreatic cancer."

Mattress Firm began its partnership with TGen in 2011 to help fund the institute's aggressive search for early detection and the cure for pancreatic cancer.

"Many of our team members and customers have been personally touched by the disease and lost loved ones," said Steve Stagner, CEO of Mattress Firm. "Through our funding and awareness-building programs for TGen, we dream of a day in the near future when it will be possible to significantly extend the lives of our friends and family with this devastating disease."

Pancreatic cancer this year will take the lives of nearly 40,000 Americans, making it the nation's 4th leading cause of cancer-related death. For the more than 44,000 Americans who will be diagnosed this year with pancreatic cancer, the outlook is grim. More than 70 percent will die within the first year, and only 6 percent will survive more than five years.

It is the most deadly of all cancers because there is no method of early detection. It usually is not diagnosed until its late stages, often when it is too advanced for surgery and difficult to treat even with the latest drug compounds.

TGen is working on a method of early detection, and even better methods of treatment.

"Many other cancers have been cured. This one will be, too," said TGen Distinguished Professor and Physician-In-Chief Dr. Daniel D. Von Hoff, who leads TGen's pancreatic cancer research and is one of the nation's leading authorities on pancreatic cancer.

"Breakthroughs happen and often happen quickly," Dr. Von Hoff recently told readers of The Arizona Republic. "We must keep after it to defeat it."

For more information and to make donations, please visit:

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About Mattress Firm
With more than 1,500 company-operated and franchised stores across 36 states, Mattress Firm (NASDAQ:MFRM) has the largest geographic footprint in the United States among multi-brand mattress retailers. Founded in 1986, Houston-based Mattress Firm is the nation's leading bedding retailer with more than $1.2 billion in sales for 2013. The company offers a broad selection of both traditional and specialty mattresses, bedding accessories and other related products from leading manufacturers, including Sealy, Tempur-Pedic, Serta, Simmons, Stearns & Foster, Hampton & Rhodes and Atmos. Mattress Firm guarantees price, comfort and service with the ultimate goal of ensuring customers Save Money. Sleep Happy™. More information is available at

About TGen
Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is a Phoenix, Arizona-based non-profit organization dedicated to conducting groundbreaking research with life changing results. TGen is focused on helping patients with cancer, neurological disorders and diabetes, through cutting edge translational research (the process of rapidly moving research towards patient benefit). TGen physicians and scientists work to unravel the genetic components of both common and rare complex diseases in adults and children. Working with collaborators in the scientific and medical communities literally worldwide, TGen makes a substantial contribution to help our patients through efficiency and effectiveness of the translational process. For more information, visit:

Press Contact:
Steve Yozwiak
TGen Senior Science Writer
[email protected]

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