Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (D-GA) spearheaded a bipartisan letter with Congressman Peter King (R-NY) in support of the Department of Defense (DoD) Peer-Reviewed Prostate Cancer Research Program (PCRP). The funds will be directed to identify new methods to diagnose prostate cancer, develop new targeted Medicare and vaccines, and increase access to clinical trials. Seventy-one of his colleagues, including Congressman King, signed the letter in support of the initiative.
"The Peer-Reviewed Prostate Cancer Research Program has produced some of the most cutting edge research on prostate cancer in the United States," said Congressman Bishop. "Without sufficient funding, this innovative and vital program will be unable to conduct important clinical trials that will help to translate the program's important research into treatments for the disease."
This year, nearly 238,590 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer and over 29,000 men will die from the disease. African American men are at special risk for the disease, with the highest rate of prostate cancer in the world. Prostate cancer is the most frequently diagnosed non-skin cancer in the United States and the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men. Although prostate cancer results in 15 percent of cancer deaths in men annually, only 5 percent of our nation's cancer research budget is devoted to the study of this disease.
Since 1996, the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee has been instrumental in advancing prostate cancer research by funding the DoD Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program for prostate cancer. The DoD has a long history of performing medical research studies and because of its administrative structure has demonstrated an ability to be flexible and quickly adjust responses to changing needs and priorities. The PCRP is the gold standard in prostate cancer research and an integral part of the national fight against this deadly disease.