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Cyclist’s Story Highlights
Work of COL

Dr. Derek Fox gives a customized jersey to professional cyclist Floyd Landis to thank him for his presentation during the COL’s biennial benefit.

Dr. Jimi Cook, director of the Comparative Orthopaedic Laboratory at MU, chats with Joe and Jennifer Holzhauer of St. Louis during a benefit for the COL held at Orr Street Studios in Columbia.

Dr. Jimi Cook discusses some of the research
under way at the COL.

Professional cyclist Floyd Landis addresses the audience about his own hip resurfacing procedure during the
benefit for the COL.

Dr. Jimi Cook shares a laugh with MU orthopaedic surgeon Dr. Sonny Bal, with whom he has collaborated on research projects to benefit both human and animal health.

Professional cyclist Floyd Landis’ability to push the pace up mountains contributed to the wins the U.S. Postal Team enjoyed during three consecutive Tours de France. What many casual racing fans did not know about the “Master of the Mountains” was that he crashed his bike during a training ride after the 2002 Tour and fractured his hip. From 2003 through 2006, while he continued racing, he was battling debilitating pain brought on by severe degeneration of his hip with complete loss of articular cartilage.

During two years away from professional racing, he underwent a state-of-the-art hip resurfacing procedure. Since that surgery he has ridden more than 25,000 miles. Landis visited Columbia, Mo., on Nov. 14 to talk about his accident, recovery and return to elite cycling during the biennial Comparative Orthopaedic Laboratory’s Arthritis Benefit.

The COL is one of the University of Missouri’s initiatives to develop collaborations between physicians, veterinarians, and other scientific-health related disciplines, to benefit both human and animal health. The COL has a three-fold mission:  To design and conduct the highest quality hypothesis-driven research focused on orthopaedic disorders of diarthrodial joints; to implement a comparative approach to investigation of joint disease in order to most efficiently and comprehensively address identified problems; and to apply basic science research to the clinical situation in order to span the gap that often limits the usefulness of scientific discoveries.

Research like that conducted in the COL is what resulted in the technology needed for Landis’ hip resurfacing procedure.

The benefit event drew approximately 75 attendees to the Orr Street Studios art gallery for an evening that included Landis’ presentation, a silent auction, door prizes and dinner.

Dr. Jimi Cook, director of the Comparative Orthopaedic Laboratory, presented an overview of the COL and discussed the inspiration for his work – his grandfather, whose multiple joint replacement surgeries  spurred Cook’s desire to develop improved techniques, materials and procedures to help people with arthritis. Cook’s presentation delved into the prevalence of arthritis as the most common cause of disability, the financial cost to society, how all species are affected by degenerative joint conditions, and how the COL team is making major strides in early diagnosis and biologic treatments for arthritis.

Dr. Derek Fox, COL associate director, then introduced keynote speaker Flandis, who discussed his own experience with osteoarthritis, what it was like being unable to ride during his recovery and the process of resuming training. He also answered audience members’ questions that centered around his racing experiences and the rigors involved in succeeding as a professional cyclist.

Among the silent auction items donated for the event was an OUCH Pro Cycling Team jersey that Landis and the Ouch Team donated. Cook was the successful bidder for the jersey, which he then gave to Fox, a cycling enthusiast. Fox, in turn, presented Landis with a cycling jersey emblazoned with the COL logo.

The benefit’s major sponsors were Smith and Nephew, Dana and Sonny Bal Orthopaedic Endowment, Zimmer, and Arthrex.  Others providing sponsorship donations to the event were Ed and Bev Estabrook, David and Barbara Fox, Ann and Hans Juengemann, JoAnne Kramer, and Hall Griffin of IMEX Veterinary Inc.

Donating auction items in addition to Landis and team OUCH were Big Shark Bicycle Co., Jimi and Cristi Cook, Jane Gordon Cook, Kei Kuroki, Kevin Marberry, Les Bourgeouis Winery, Leslie McCullough-Payne, Jennifer Perlow of PS Gallery, Roger and Bonnie Poythress, Amy Roller, Danya Roselle and the MU CVM Mule Club.

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Last Update: February 24, 2012