After completing my first full year leading the Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) community of patients, families, researchers, and clinicians, I’m delighted to share with you just how much has happened at PCF in 2022, as we also look ahead to 2023.
As you may have seen, we have rebranded PCF as the “Global Public Square of Prostate Cancer”: a place where we fund research, educate, communicate, and support men and families confronting the disease.
And, in order to reduce the death and suffering from prostate cancer, PCF has re-dedicated itself to four strategic imperatives:
- Funding research on the biology of prostate cancer and its treatment
- Identifying and closing gaps in prostate cancer treatment implementation for diagnosed patients
- Driving better patient outcomes through screening, early detection, and disease awareness
- Promoting a healthy lifestyle for prostate cancer patients through diet and exercise
To support these priorities, we launched new initiatives in 2022 and saw the output of our collective vision, investment, and hard work lead to impact in many ways. Among the highlights:
- We saw a new first-in-class therapy approved by the FDA for patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. The approval of this PSMA-based treatment (known as Lutetium vipivotide tetraxetan, or LU 177, with the brand name PLUVICTO™) marks the culmination of many decades of PCF involvement – we’ve invested over $28 million in research on PSMA (Prostate Specific Membrane Antigen, a protein found on the surface of prostate cancer cells), helping define it as a unique and opportune therapeutic target.
- Our new TACTICAL research award program, PCF’s largest and boldest “Team Science” grantmaking mission ever, pushes our proven Team Science model to the next level. TACTICAL (Treatment ACceleration To Intercept CAncer Lethality) research focuses solely on the development of new therapies and arises from the success of identifying key drivers of how prostate cancer goes from treatable to lethal. In 2022, PCF funded four of these new teams of researchers from around the world, incorporating more than 10 different institutions – this is Team Science at its best, and we expect great progress from this program.
- PCF launched new broad-ranging communications efforts through our partnership with Digital Sciences Press. We now host monthly patient webinars on PCF.org, and in 2022 PCF held its first ever Prostate Cancer Patient Summits in Milwaukee and New Orleans – with more to come in 2023. You can now find hundreds of new informational videos at PCF.org as well as at our partner site Urotoday.com, covering the latest news and progress in the field. These heightened communications efforts now routinely reach patients, families, researchers, and clinicians around the world, helping PCF serve as a true global public square.
Meanwhile, 2023 marks PCF’s 30th anniversary. PCF was founded in 1993 to keep a diagnosis of prostate cancer from being a death sentence. Today average survival expectations for men with hormone-resistant prostate cancer have increased thanks to PCF, from only about 11 months in 1993 to well over four years today, with some exceptional responders living much longer.
We can celebrate the fact that, 30 years later, PCF’s mission now includes the promotion of quality survivorship. Because men now are living longer after a prostate cancer diagnosis, and new issues surround the day-to-day effort by patients to live one’s best life during or after treatment.
And today, thanks to advances in precision medicine, PCF-funded discoveries now impact patterns, pathways, and processes that drive not only prostate cancer, but many other cancers as well.
Without a doubt, more challenges lie ahead. Too many of our fathers, sons, and brothers are still diagnosed with and dying from prostate cancer every day.
But none of PCF’s work – from the past year, or the past 30 years, to the next 30 years – would be possible without a community that includes you. We do our work so that you can live longer and live better.
I look forward to leading PCF through 2023 and beyond – with you as our partner.
With best wishes,
Charles J. Ryan, MD
President and CEO
P.S. Should you have the means and the inclination to help us in this challenging year, please use this link for your tax-deductible gift. All gifts are matched dollar for dollar – your kindness will go twice as far when you support PCF this holiday season.