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The Prostate Cancer Foundation Announces 2022 Challenge Awards Totaling More Than $12 Million for Prostate Cancer Research

LOS ANGELES, Calif., January 31, 2023 – The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) today announced the 2022 Class of PCF Team Challenge Award recipients and a total of more than $12 million in funding for innovative prostate cancer research.

PCF Challenge Awards fund international, multi-institutional, cross-disciplinary teams of investigators conducting highly innovative research with the greatest potential for accelerating new and improved treatments for advanced prostate cancer. Following a rigorous peer review process that assessed each project’s scientific merit and potential patient impact, 15 highly coveted PCF Challenge Awards totaling more than $12 million were granted to teams at some of the world’s leading cancer research institutions.

For full project descriptions visit https://www.pcf.org/c/challenge-awards-class-of-2022/

2022 Movember-PCF Challenge Award
Project Title: The Rate Elements Skewing Outcomes Linked to Veteran Equity in PCa (RESOLVE PCa) Consortium: Multilevel Modeling to Predict Prostate Cancer Incidence and Aggressiveness
(Utilizing clinical, demographic, and genetic data from over 500,000 Veterans, to identify social and environmental vs. genomic/genetic factors that contribute to prostate cancer racial disparities and develop improved patient screening and management strategies.)
Team Leaders: Isla Garraway, MD, PhD (University of California, Los Angeles; Greater Los Angeles VA Healthcare System); Kara Maxwell, MD, PhD (University of Pennsylvania; Corporal Michael J. Crescenz VA Medical Center); Kosj Yamoah, MD, PhD (Moffit Cancer Center); Timothy Rebbeck, PhD (Dana-Farber Cancer Institute; Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health); Brent Rose, MD (University of California, San Diego)

2022 Movember-Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride-PCF Challenge Award
Project Title: IRONMAN: Enhancing Survivorship in Patients with Advanced Prostate Cancer
(Using clinical and patient-reported data from the global IRONMAN registry to identify strategies to reduce disparites and improve quality of life and outcomes in patients with advanced prostate cancer.)
Team Leaders: Lorelei Mucci, ScD, MPH (Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health); Daniel George, MD (Duke University)

2022 Michael & Lori Milken Family Foundation-PCF Challenge Award
Project Title: Mechanisms of Response and Resistance to DLL3-Targeted T Cell Engager Therapy
(Investigating a new DLL3-targeted immunotherapy for neuroendocrine prostate cancer and identifying strategies to improve patient selection and treatment efficacy.)
Team Leader: Himisha Beltran, MD (Dana-Farber Cancer Institute)

2022 Stewart Rahr Foundation-PCF Challenge Award

Project Title: Hormonal Shock Therapy for Metastatic Castrate Resistant Prostate Cancer
(Studying the mechanisms and efficacy of a new treatment approach that combines bipolar androgen therapy (BAT) with a therapy that targets the polyamine pathway in patients with metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer.)
Team Leaders: Samuel Denmeade, MD (Johns Hopkins University); Robert Casero, PhD (Johns Hopkins University); Erika Pearce, PhD (Johns Hopkins University)

2022 John Black Charitable Foundation-PCF Challenge Award
Project Title: First-In-Man PARP1-Selective Inhibitor in Lethal Prostate Cancer: Mechanisms of Action and Biomarkers of Therapeutic Response
(Elucidating the biology of a combination PARP-inhibitor with anti-androgen therapy and developing a blood test to select which patients are most likely to benefit from this therapy.)  
Team Leaders: Harveer Dev, MD, PhD (University of Cambridge); Simon Pacey, MD, PhD (University of Cambridge); Charlie Massie, PhD (University of Cambridge)

2022 Stupski Foundation-PCF Challenge Award
Project Title: Debunking the Frailty-SarcopenIa-ADT Axis in MEtastatic Prostate CanceR with MultiCompenent Exercise: The FIERCE Trial
(Testing the impact of a multicomponent exercise intervention on frailty and sarcopenia in men undergoing treatment with androgen deprivation therapy and identifying biomarkers of response and mechanisms by which exercise improves these functions.)
Team Leader: Christina Dieli-Conwright, PhD, MPH (Dana-Farber Cancer Institute)

2022 Patrice & Precious Motsepe-PCF Challenge Award
Project Title: Developing and Translating Innovative Strategies to Therapeutically Target Prostate Cancer Lineage Plasticity
(Testing the ability of several therapeutic approaches to prevent lineage plasticity and the development of castration resistant prostate cancer.)
Team Leaders: David Goodrich, PhD (Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center); Gurkamal Chatta, MD (Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center); Dean Tang, PhD (Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center); Dominic Smiraglia, PhD (Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center)

2022 PCF Challenge Award
Project Title: Targeting Lipid Metabolism and Diet in Patients with Locally Advanced Prostate Cancer
(Testing the effects of combining a treatment targeting the enzyme FASN with a diet that modulates the levels of dietary lipids used in metabolic pathways that fuel prostate cancer.) 
Team Leader: Massimo Loda, MD (Weill Cornell Medicine)

2022 John Black Charitable Foundation-PCF Challenge Award
Project Title: Epitranscriptomic Determinants of Treatment Resistance in Prostate Cancer
(Determining whether aberrant regulation of RNA methylation is a driver of enzalutamide resistance, and whether therapies targeting methylation may overcome it.)
Team Leader: Nigel Mongan, PhD (University of Nottingham)

2022 Michael & Lori Milken Family Foundation-PCF Challenge Award
Project Title:  Activating the NLRP3 Inflammasome to Treat Advanced Prostate Cancer
(Demonstrating the mechanisms and potential for NLRP3-activation as a new immunotherapeutic strategy, alone or in combination with androgen deprivation therapy and/or checkpoint immunotherapy.)
Team Leaders: Akash Patnaik, MD, PhD (University of Chicago); Amy Moran, PhD (Oregon Health & Science University); David Sykes, MD, PhD (Massachusetts General Hospital)

2022 Igor Tulchinksy-Leerom Segal-PCF Challenge Award
Project Title: Leveraging Poison Introns for Therapeutics and Diagnostics of Lethal Prostate Cancer
(Understanding the impact of minor intron splicing on prostate cancer biology and therapy resistance and its potential as a risk assessment biomarker.)
Team Leaders: Mark Rubin, MD (University of Bern); Gunnar Rätsch, PhD (ETH Zurich); Rahul Kanadia, PhD (University of Connecticut)

2022 PCF Challenge Award
Project Title:  Enhancing Antigen Presentation and Anti-Tumor Immunity for Prostate Cancers through an Intratumorally Delivered, Fc-Enhanced Anti-CD40 Antibody Therapy
(Studying the efficacy and mechanisms of action of a novel immunotherapy that targets the key immune activation pathway CD40 in patients with prostate cancer.)
Team Leaders: Howard Scher, MD (Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center); Behfar Ehdaie, MD, MPH (Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center); David Knorr, MD, PhD (Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center); Matthew Dallos, MD (Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center)

2022 PCF Challenge Award
Project Title: Targeting B7-H3 in Aggressive Variant Prostate Cancer
(Determining the role of B7-H3 in aggressive forms of metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer and its potential as a therapeutic target.)
Team Leaders: Di Zhao, PhD (The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center); Ana Aparicio, MD (The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center); Sangeeta Goswami, MD, PhD (The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center)

2022 Janssen – PCF Special Challenge Award
Project Title: Advancing the Drug Development Process in Metastatic Prostate Cancer through Machine Learning
(Using a machine learning approach to identify novel kinetic, multi-dimensional biomarkers that can accurately predict overall survival and can serve as intermediate clinical endpoints to speed clinical trials in metastatic prostate cancer.)
Team Leaders: Eric Small, MD (University of California, San Francisco); Rahul Aggarwal, MD (University of California, San Francisco); Julian Hong, MD, MS (University of California, San Francisco); David Quigley, PhD (University of California, San Francisco)

2022 Count Me In – PCF Special Challenge Award for Metastatic Prostate Cancer
Project Title: Metastatic Prostate Cancer (MPC) Project
(Using data from over 1,000 patients to comprehensively profile the genomic landscape of metastatic prostate cancer to discover new biology and inform treatment strategies.)
Team Leader: Eliezer Van Allen, MD (Harvard: Broad Institute of MIT & Harvard)

About the Prostate Cancer Foundation
The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) is the world’s leading philanthropic organization dedicated to funding life-saving prostate cancer research. Founded in 1993 by Mike Milken, PCF has been responsible for raising close to $1 billion in support of cutting-edge research by more than 2,200 research projects at 245 leading cancer centers in 28 countries around the world. Since PCF’s inception, and through its efforts, patients around the world are living longer, suffering fewer complications, and enjoying better quality of life. PCF is committed to creating a global public square for prostate cancer, in service to our mission of ending death and suffering from the disease. Learn more at pcf.org.

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Staci L. Vernick
Prostate Cancer Foundation
[email protected]
[email protected]