Pancreatic Cancer Action Network Press Release NCI Progress Report

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September 14, 2010

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

NATIONAL CANCER INSTITUTE’S PROGRESS REPORT AND ACTION PLAN FOR PANCREATIC CANCER RESEARCH:
A STATEMENT FROM THE PANCREATIC CANCER ACTION NETWORK

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. – (September 24, 2010) – The following is a statement in response to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Investment in Pancreatic Cancer Research Action Plan for Fiscal Year 2011 and Pancreatic Cancer: A Summary of NCI’s Portfolio and Highlights of Recent Research Progress (September 2010) from Julie Fleshman, president and CEO of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, the only national organization creating hope in a comprehensive way through research, patient support, community outreach and advocacy for a cure.

“The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network commends the NCI for conducting a review of its pancreatic cancer research portfolio and releasing the Progress Report and Fiscal Year 2011 Action Plan. This represents an important initial step towards a long term plan and investment by the NCI to better understand the disease and why it develops, and to identify detection methods and therapies to treat the disease once a patient has been diagnosed.

“While the NCI has continued to increase funding for pancreatic cancer research in recent years, from $20 million in 2000 to $89.7 million in 2009, the fact remains that funding for pancreatic cancer research lags far behind that for the other top five causes of cancer death in the U.S. The lack of investment in pancreatic cancer research is reflected in the dismal five-year survival rate of six percent, which has remained largely unchanged in nearly 40 years. This statistic is especially troubling given that the overall five-year survival rate for all forms of cancer combined has increased from 50 percent to 68 percent in the same time period. Pancreatic cancer is now the only top ten cancer killer with a five-year survival rate in the single digits.

“The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network hopes that the NCI will use the Fiscal Year 2011 Action Plan as a basis to develop a comprehensive long-term action plan—backed by robust, sustained resources—and stands ready to work with the Institute in this endeavor. We will also continue to do our part to advance research by collaborating with researchers, patients, families and volunteers to ensure that progress is made against pancreatic cancer and that survival rates improve substantially.”

The full NCI reports can be found online at: http://www.cancer.gov/researchandfunding/priorities.

About the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network:
The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is the only national organization creating hope in a comprehensive way through research, patient support, community outreach and advocacy for a cure. The organization raises money for direct private funding of research—and advocates for more aggressive federal research funding of medical breakthroughs in prevention, diagnosis and treatment of pancreatic cancer.

The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network fills the void of information and options by giving patients and caregivers reliable, personalized information they need to make informed decisions. It creates a sense of hope and community so no one has to face pancreatic cancer alone. The organization helps support individuals and communities all across the country to work together to raise awareness and funds to find a cure for pancreatic cancer.

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MEDIA INQUIRIES ONLY CONTACT:
Jennifer Rosen
Senior Manager, Public Relations
Pancreatic Cancer Action Network
Direct: 310-706-3362
Email:jrosen@pancan.org

ALL OTHER INQUIRIES, PLEASE CALL THE PANCREATIC CANCER ACTION NETWORK AT 877-272-6226 OR EMAIL INFO@PANCAN.ORG.

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