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$25,000 Awarded to Nikolaus Schultz, PhD for Work on cBioPortalPCF Invites Global Applicants for Future Prizes


SANTA MONICA, CA April 20, 2015—The Prostate Cancer Foundation(PCF) is pleased to announce the Stupski Prize in Prostate Cancer Computational Oncology, a first-in-field initiative designed to attract novel ideas to the rapidly changing field of large-scale cancer bioinformatics. These solutions will help clinicians and researchers optimize treatment for individual prostate cancer patients and may also lead to breakthroughs in other cancers as common molecular drivers and pathways are uncovered. A total of five $25,000 prizes will be awarded over the next two years.

“The Stupksi Prize creates prize philanthropy for cancer bioinformaticians in the same way we celebrate molecular biologists and clinical investigators who improve the patient’s future. The Stupski Prize heightens the visibility of math and engineering in the health sciences, and underscores the importance of computational oncology for the treatment of genomically complex, life-threatening illnesses,” says Jonathan W. Simons, MD, president and chief executive officer of PCF. “This initiative is truly a next-generation approach to saving lives.”

Nikolaus Schultz, PhD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, was named the inaugural Stupski Prize winner. Dr. Schultz’s award recognizes his work in developing the cBioPortal for Cancer Genomics, a revolutionary web-based tool that provides visualization, analysis and download of large-scale cancer genomics data sets. He will be discussing the results of his work on Tuesday, April 21, 2015 at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research in Philadelphia, PA.

Dr. Schultz, who was named the 2014 John A. Paulson-PCF Young Investigator, is currently designing a computational software system that leverages the infrastructure of the cBioPortal to integrate patient-specific information, including genetic alterations, pathology results and treatment history, with population-scale cancer genome data. The resulting software will enable oncologists everywhere to identify relevant targetable alterations in individual prostate cancer patients, find available clinical trials for each patient and identify mechanisms of treatment resistance.

The next four prizes will be awarded as a result of global, crowdsourced competitions. PCF is calling for prospective participants to sign up for notifications on upcoming competitions through its website.

Sign up to be notified of future Stupski Prize competitions:https://www.pcf.org/stupski/email

This “crowdsourcing” competitive model of problem solving has shown great success in private enterprises. PCF is the first research foundation to implement such a program globally. Stupski Prize global competitions will accelerate the development of algorithms, software and apps that will help doctors personalize treatments for individual patients with unique tumor biology. Competitions will be open to the global community of computer scientists, engineers, financial services modelers, physicists, video gamers and mathematicians worldwide. This approach encourages talent beyond the oncology research community to broaden participation and promote diversity in the field of prostate cancer research.

The Stupski Prize celebrates the legacy of visionary philanthropist Lawrence J. Stupski, the former president and chief operating officer of Charles Schwab Corporation. In his memory, the Stupski Foundation has provided funds for the Stupski Prize. The competition for the second Stupski Prize will be announced to the public later this year.

About the Prostate Cancer Foundation

The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) is the world’s leading philanthropic organization funding and accelerating prostate cancer research. Founded in 1993, PCF has raised more than $615 million and provided funding to more than 2,000 research programs at nearly 200 cancer centers and universities. The PCF global research enterprise now extends to 19 countries. PCF advocates for greater awareness of prostate cancer and more efficient investment of governmental research funds for transformational cancer research. Its efforts have helped produce a 20-fold increase in government funding for prostate cancer.