THOUSAND OAKS, Calif., May 11, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Amgen (NASDAQ: AMGN) today announced the launch of the Breakaway from Heart Disease™ campaign to help make heart health a priority. Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Montana, the American Heart Association and Schwinn are joining forces with Amgen to urge Americans to learn more about their family history of heart disease and get active through cycling. Montana wants others to take charge of their heart health and make meaningful lifestyle changes – just like his family did.
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As a former professional athlete and a father of four, staying active and living a healthy lifestyle is important to Montana and his wife, Jennifer. Heart disease runs in Montana's family, and Jennifer's father passed away from a heart attack at the age of 60. But, Montana didn't know just how much his family history could impact his own heart health.
"Being a lifelong athlete, I was surprised when my doctor diagnosed me with high cholesterol and high blood pressure, which are risk factors for heart diseasei," said Montana. "Heart disease was admittedly never top of mind for me, but after learning that my family history can influence the future health of my own family, I joined Amgen for Breakaway from Heart Disease. I want to motivate others to get active and let them know that they, too, can work to reduce the risk of heart disease for their families."
Breakaway from Heart Disease is an easy and fun way for Americans to support heart health and ride toward a better future through a series of bike and spin events. The first event kicks off on May 15, 2016, in San Diego during the Amgen Tour of California – the country's largest and most prestigious professional cycling race. The Heart Health Tour continues across America with bike and spin events as part of the American Heart Association's CycleNation™, among other opportunities in select cities across the United States (U.S.). Visit www.BreakawayfromHeartDisease.com to find out more about what you can do today to help improve your heart health for tomorrow.
"With more than 40 percent of U.S. adults projected to have some form of cardiovascular disease by 2030ii, heart disease continues to be a critical health concern for Americansiii," said Raymond C. Jordan, senior vice president of Corporate Affairs at Amgen. "By joining leading organizations in a shared commitment, Breakaway from Heart Disease aims to encourage everyone to learn more about their family history of heart disease and get active through activities, such as cycling."
People can also join the ride virtually by uploading a cycling photo and pledging their miles to www.BreakawayfromHeartDisease.com using #HeartHealthTour. Each time a photo is submitted through the website, participants will be entered to win a set of Schwinn bikes, as well as trigger a $1 donation from Amgen to the American Heart Association.
"While heart disease can run in your family, it is largely preventable through education, simple lifestyle changes, and action," said Suzanne Steinbaum, D.O., cardiologist, and spokesperson for the American Heart Association. "That's why American Heart Association's CycleNation™ is excited to join Breakaway from Heart Disease to provide Americans with critical tools and information to help break the cycle of heart disease, and hopefully, improve their cardiovascular health 20 percent by 2020."
About the Breakaway from Heart Disease™ Team
Amgen created Breakaway from Heart Disease™ as a complementary component to the Amgen Tour of California. The collective goal of the campaign is to fundamentally change the future of America's heart health by helping people to find out more about their family's history of heart disease and encouraging them to get active through cycling. Amgen has joined forces with leading advocates and organizations, including:
Joe and Jennifer Montana
As one of the most recognizable athletes in America, Joe has won at each level of his game, including four professional football championships in a nine-year stretch and a college football championship in 1977. He brings the same spirit of integrity, commitment and quiet enthusiasm to his responsibilities as a father of four, a husband to Jennifer and dedicated philanthropist. With a family history of heart disease, and high blood pressure and cholesterol himself, this year, Joe and Jennifer teamed up with Amgen on Breakaway from Heart Disease to encourage others to understand how their family's history may affect their present risk for heart disease and what they can do to help improve their heart health.
American Heart Association
The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke — the two leading causes of death in the world. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation's oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit www.heart.org or any of our offices around the country.
The American Heart Association has joined Breakaway from Heart Disease to help elevate the fight by providing critical tools and information to help Americans learn more about their family's heart history and ultimately how to take steps to positively impact health.
Amgen's Breakaway from Heart Disease campaign benefits the American Heart Association and Amgen Cardiovascular is a proud national sponsor of American Heart Association's CycleNation™. To learn more, visit www.CycleNation.org.
Schwinn, an American icon building some of the best-known and best-loved bicycles of all time, joins the campaign to encourage everyone to take advantage of cycling as a way to improve heart health.
Amgen is committed to unlocking the potential of biology for patients suffering from serious illnesses by discovering, developing, manufacturing and delivering innovative human therapeutics. This approach begins by using tools like advanced human genetics to unravel the complexities of disease and understand the fundamentals of human biology.
Amgen focuses on areas of high unmet medical need and leverages its expertise to strive for solutions that improve health outcomes and dramatically improve people's lives. A biotechnology pioneer since 1980, Amgen has grown to be one of the world's leading independent biotechnology companies, has reached millions of patients around the world and is developing a pipeline of medicines with breakaway potential.
About the Amgen Tour of California
The Amgen Tour of California is a Tour de France-style cycling road race created and presented by AEG that challenges the world's top professional cycling teams to compete along a demanding course that traverses hundreds of miles of California's iconic highways, byways and coastlines each spring. The teams chosen to participate have included Olympic medalists, Tour de France contenders and World Champions. Amgen Tour of California is listed on the international professional cycling calendar (2 HC, meaning "beyond category"), awarding important, world-ranking points to the top finishers. More information is available at www.amgentourofcalifornia.com.
CONTACT: Amgen, Thousand Oaks
Kristen Davis, 805-447-3008 (media)
Kristen Neese, 805-313-8267 (media)
i National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Lower Heart Disease Risk. Available at http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/hearttruth/lower-risk/risk-factors.htm. Accessed March 15, 2016.
ii Heidenreich PA, Trogdon JG, Khavjou OA, et al. Forecasting the Future of Cardiovascular Disease in the United States: A Policy Statement From the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2011; 123:933-944.
iii Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Heart disease facts. Heart disease in the United States. Available at www.cdc.gov/dhdsp/data_statistics/fact_sheets/fs_heart_disease.htm. Accessed March 14, 2016.
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