Oct. 11, 2013

Prostate Cancer advocate Norman R. Thoresen of Wauwatosa recently participated in the evaluation of research applications submitted to the Prostate Cancer Research Program (PCRP) sponsored by the Department of Defense. Norman was nominated for participation in the program by the Clement J. Zablocki VA Medical Center. As a consumer reviewer, he was a full voting member, along with prominent scientists, at meetings to help determine how the $80 million appropriated by Congress for Fiscal Year 2013 will be spent on future prostate cancer research.

Consumer reviewers are asked to represent the collective view of individuals with prostate cancer and patients, family members, and persons at risk for the disease when they prepare comments on the impact of the research on issues such as disease prevention, screening, diagnosis, treatment, and quality of life after treatment. Commenting on serving as a consumer reviewer, Thoresen said that “It is humbling to be a small part of an organization that is working to improve the lives of men affected by this disease.”

Consumer advocates and scientists have worked together in this unique partnership to evaluate the scientific merit of prostate cancer research applications since 1997. Colonel Wanda L. Salzer, M.D., Director of the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs, expressed her appreciation for the perspectives of the consumer advocates in the scientific review sessions. “The Consumer Reviewers on each panel are instrumental in helping the scientists understand the patient’s perspective and provide valuable insight into the potential impact of the proposed project. They bring with them a sense of urgency and remind all of the human element involved in medical research.”

Scientists applying propose to conduct innovative research aimed at lessening the impact and improving the lives of individuals living with prostate cancer. The PCRP fills important gaps not addressed by other funding agencies by supporting groundbreaking, high-risk, high-gain research while encouraging out-of-the-box thinking.

More information about the Department of Defense PCRP is available at the Website:

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