MADISON, Wis (SPECTRUM NEWS) -- Sunday morning, more than 1700 will participate in this year's 'The Ride.'  A fundraiser for the Carbone Cancer Center.  Ahead of the cycling event — UW Health Oncologist Dr. Josh Lang welcomed one cyclist into his lab to learn how seed money from last year's benefit, helped his lab do something novel.  Dr. Lang showed Verona's Jake Baker a special device UW created to pull tumor cells from a patient blood draw. 

"The problem is they [tumor cells] are extremely there is one one tumor cell for every billion blood cells…and we have developed micro-fluidic technology that allows us to do just that," Dr. Lang said.

The researcher learned the collected cancer cells also carried a special signature.  Dr. Lang’s lab recently was awarded $3 Million from the National Cancer Institute to perform further testing on those unique cells this October.

He hopes to focus the study on prostate cancer patients whose cancer has become resistant to treatment.

But Dr. Lang says none of this would be possible with funding from 'The Ride'.

"We would hope to get funding somewhere else, it really slows down the pace of research, really slows down these ideas,"he explained.

You can learn how to donate or participate in the event here.