Magnum P.E.I.

Wayne Thibodeau
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Premiers Ghiz, Wall to compete for Movember fundraiser

Premier Robert Ghiz, left, idolized Magnum PI (Tom Selleck's TV character from the 1980s show of the same name) when he was too young to grow a mustache. Now Ghiz is facing off against Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall in a Movember mustache-growing effort.

November may be a hairy month for Prince Edward Island Premier Robert Ghiz.

Ghiz has accepted a challenge from Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall, who is a friend, to grow a moustache as part of the Movember campaign.

“I was texting with him last night back and forth and I said, ‘you can count on me for a donation but I’m also going to raise some money myself,” Ghiz told The Guardian on Tuesday.

Wall called on Ghiz to make a donation to help him reach his goal of raising $3,000 by Nov. 1. By Monday, the Saskatchewan premier was closing in on $4,000.

Ghiz said he’s not setting a fundraising target.

However, he’s already hit social media, including Facebook, in an effort to raise donations.

“We’re also going to see who can grow the better moustache,” he said. “The only time that I was interested in growing a moustache was when I was a kid and I idolized Magnum P.I. I was too young then to grow a moustache.”

Movember encourages clean-shaven men to grow a moustache in November to raise funds for prostate cancer and men’s mental health. Last year, Canadians raised $42 million.

Ghiz said he’s anticipating some comments as he tries to grow a moustache.

The premiers are meetings in Halifax in late November, so that will give Ghiz and Wall a chance to compare growth.

Ghiz will also have to go through a fall legislative session, including being front and centre during question period daily and in front of the TV cameras, so Islanders will also be able to keep track of his new facial features.

“I don’t know how a moustache is going to look,” he said. “If I’m away on vacation with my wife, I may leave a beard for a few days. She’ll tell me to leave the moustache just to make fun of me a little bit. I don’t think it will be the most complimentary thing in the world but it’s for a good cause and if you get to have a little fun with it along the way, that’s a bonus.”

Geographic location: Saskatchewan, Prince Edward Island, Halifax

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Recent comments

  • CrazyTalk
    October 31, 2012 - 17:56

    Wow. Even when the Premier does something that is in no way political - you all just can't help yourselves. You just have to say nasty and ignorant things. Really, sometimes you just have to go with the old standard - If you have nothing nice to say then say nothing. Oh and "grow up" might be a good way to go too.

  • dm
    October 31, 2012 - 13:43

    should he not be spending more time governing the province instead of socializing with the rest of Canada's politicians seems he dose a lot of that and being premier is just so figure head job for him

  • they found a cure
    October 31, 2012 - 13:27

    Simple, cheap drug holds cancer treatment promise Text: Share on print Share on email .Photos The University of Alberta's Dr. Evangelos Michelakis and a colleague look at a brain scan in Edmonton, Wednesday, May 12, 2010. Dr. Evangelos Michelakis of the University of Alberta's Department of Medicine speaks with CTV News in Edmonton, Wednesday, May 12, 2010. More Details Health Canada approves first human trial for DCA Cancer Society worried by self-medication reports Small molecule offers hope for cancer treatment News Staff Published Wednesday, May. 12, 2010 9:48PM EDT An inexpensive drug already in use for other diseases might hold the key to a completely new way of treating cancers -- not by killing off cancer cells, but by simply reprogramming them. The finding comes from some exciting Canadian research on patients with brain tumours. The study found that DCA -- or dichloroacetate -- can shrink the tumours by altering a cancer cell's metabolism. While the study was small -- just five patients were studied -- the researchers say their findings are "proof in principle" that the treatment approach works. Cancer cells are notoriously resistant to death, because of their tendency to kick their own cell metabolism into high gear and gobble up lots of nutrients. Cancer cells can also suppress mitochondria, which are the tiny powerhouses inside cells that convert food into energy and which can kill off its own host cell if it demands too much energy. Back in 2007, Dr. Evangelos Michelakis, a professor at the University of Alberta department of medicine, discovered along with and colleagues that DCA might help slow cancer growth. DCA is a common compound that has been used for years to treat children with inborn mitochondrial diseases, by "boosting" and normalizing their mitochondria. Michelakis wondered whether DCA could also help repair the damage cancer causes to mitochondria. In test of lab rats, his team found that DCA did help reprogram cancer cell mitochondria, thereby stunting the growth of lung, breast and brain tumours in both rats and in human tissue samples. What's more, the drug left healthy cells healthy, unlike other cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation. Because healthy cells don't have the same mitochondrial changes as cancer cells, the DCA left them unchanged. Now, Michelakis has led a team to test the effects of DCA on patients with glioblastomas, a highly aggressive type of brain cancer that has few other treatments. They treated five glioblastoma patients with DCA, seeking only to find out if the compound was safe and reacted as it should. Even though this trial was not meant to determine whether compound slowed the cancer, in fact, they found it did. Brain imaging scans revealed that in four of the patients, no further cancer growth was seen for 15 months after initial treatment. In three of the patients, the tumours actually shrank. Follow-up studies on cells taken from these patients showed that the DCA helped normalize cancer mitochondria to they could kill off cancer cells, along with other anti-tumour effects. What's more, none of the patients reported significant side effects when taking DCA at the level prescribed. "We showed that DCA was killing the brain cancer cells," Michelakis told CTV News. "But more importantly, we had evidence that DCA might be doing the same thing in cancer stem cells, which are the mother of all cancer cells." A 'new frontier' for cancer treatment Michelakis say he's delighted with the results, which are published in the journal, Science Translational Medicine. "It's now clear that targeting metabolism for cancer might be a new frontier for cancer," he said. Dr. Joseph Megyesi, a neurosurgeon who is the chair of the board of directors for the Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada, expressed cautious optimism about the study, noting that false hopes have been raised before. "There have been other new ways of approaching glioblastoma that when tested over longer period of time didn't turn out to be as good as initially suggested," he told CTV. But Megyesi also said that patients "should be cautiously optimistic that this potential treatment may be effective down the road." Researchers' biggest challenge: no industry support Still, he said, if DCA is shown in further studies to be effective, the fact that it is already being used to treat mitochondrial diseases would make it easier for it to be approved for a new use. Michelakis notes that all of the studies they've undertaken thus far on DCA have come with the support of the University of Alberta and public donations. That's in part because DCA is a commonly available compound that is not patented or owned by any drug firm. Pharmaceutical companies have not been interested in funding further research on DCA since the treatment won't make them a profit. "That was the biggest challenge in the beginning: no industry support, no clinical applications," Michelakis said. "We showed that, yes, you can take a generic drug, and if you have the right support, from the university and from the health authority and you have the generous support of donors and funding agencies, you can make it happen," he said. He also notes that similar studies will soon start on the use of DCA for treating breast cancer, and could be extended to other cancers, too. The University of Alberta continues to solicit funds to advance the research on DCA. Anyone who would like to donate to the university's DCA Cancer Research Fund can do so online, or by contacting the university's Faculty of Medicine. With a report from CTV's Avis Favaro and Elizabeth St. Philip .. Read more:

  • they found a cure
    October 31, 2012 - 13:14

    they found a cure in edmonton but the big corperations are trying to put a stop to the research because its not profitable ((( google it ))) thats where the money should go

  • not even close
    October 31, 2012 - 12:01

    Sorry Tom Selleck, on behalf of part of the population of PEI, Rest assured Mr Selleck, NO ONE will bump into you and mistakenly call you Robert.

  • Mell
    October 31, 2012 - 11:25

    Oh, please, do not put Ghiz in the same picture with Magnum PI- there is no comparison here!

  • voter
    October 31, 2012 - 10:58

    may i suggest that he just grow his eyebrows and pull them over his eyes ?

  • Seriously
    October 31, 2012 - 10:35

    There must be better news stories out there. Two days in a row stories about Robert Ghiz and his mustache.....who really cares?

  • Sylvia
    October 31, 2012 - 10:13

    I don't know how you can put Tom Selleck's photo beside Ghiz. This is ridiculous. This must be a very slow newsday. Seriously, this is beyond ridiculous. I've always been a fan of Tom Selleck and believe me, I'm not a fan of Robert Ghiz. Why don't you focus on someone other than a politician. How about Bruce of Matt Rainie.

  • Bill Kays
    Bill Kays
    October 31, 2012 - 09:48

    Excuse me but do you not need some (at least a trace amount) of testosterone in order to grow a mustache. What next? Is he also going to try to grow a set? I would investigate any charity these boys would want to contribute to. What peeves me off about all these cancer charities is this. Where does the money go exactly? They say these funds are for prostate cancer and men's mental health. Exactly where did the 42 million go from last year? WHO GETS THE MONEY? The rich corporations doing the so called research into these problems, they get the money, so they can line their own pockets with over paid salaries, incentives, and rich pensions. What is worse is that all this money gets spent with no oversight. It is not as though someone suffering from the effects of cancer gets access to these funds but they spin it as though you are helping a poor cancer ridden person when in fact all you are helping is the big corporations profits. The causes of cancer are well known but none of these premiers or our prime minister or MPs have the guts to do what is right and call their corporate masters as being the cause of these cancers and medical problems. Where are the real leaders who genuinely care about the suffering of the poor and the sick and those among us who cannot care for themselves. Put a mustache on that.

    • Sylvia
      October 31, 2012 - 11:11

      I often wonder where all the money goes that's collected for donations to cancer society, all the money from Terry Fox marathon, so many other events that are going on. I often wonder if drug manufacturers want a cure found as they must be making a fortune from drugs being used for cancer treatments. My husband is a cancer survivor and I would really like to know where all that money is going and what it's being used for.