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Fighting Cancer “Identity Theft”

September 27, 2018

A PCF Young Investigator takes on prostate cancer tumor cells that “change their identity”

Ping Mu is a research associate working at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and a PCF Young Investigator. But his work is like that of a police detective who wants to arm doctors with the best weapons possible to defeat prostate cancer. He likens prostate cancer cells to a criminal that can change its identity and mask it from treatment.

Ping grew up in China in a family of doctors and originally wanted to be a doctor himself. But, he began to notice his family was frustrated with the lack of “weapons” to fight cancer. So, he decided that he wanted to be the one providing the newest and best weapons to fight and defeat cancer.

Now, as a researcher, he uses the identity of cancer cell to target just the cancer and not hurt the other cells. But in some cancer patients, the cancer tumor cell can change or shift its “identity” making treatment less effective. This is why funding for prostate cancer research is so important: the funding is used to create more and better weapons to outwit cancer and kill it at last.

Over the last two plus decades, there has been huge progression/advancement in cancer treatment with targeted therapy. We’ve been around for a lot of these advancements, PCF has funded hundreds of cancer research projects just like Ping Mu’s for over 25 years.

There is a gap in funding young investigators, like Ping Mu, that have promising ideas and research. The PCF Young Investigators Award fills that gap. Donating now to PCF allows us to fund Ping Mu’s research and others like him