The Northwell Health Cancer Institute announced today that it will serve as the presenting sponsor for the five Lustgarten Pancreatic Cancer Research Walks in the New York metropolitan area. Northwell will team with the Lustgarten Foundation in supporting community walks to increase awareness of the disease and promote innovative research.
The shared goal is to cure pancreatic cancer, which has a five-year survival rate of only 9 percent. More than 56,000 people will be diagnosed this year nationally and almost 46,000 will people will die from it.
The Lustgarten Walks offer patients, survivors and loved ones a day of hope, where everyone in the community can come together in the shared goal of raising awareness and funding for this incredibly challenging disease. The family-friendly walks, which include food, raffles and prizes from vendors, offer a sense of community to those who are battling this disease and a support system for survivors.
“With such low survival rates, there’s a tremendous need to collaborate with experts in this oncology specialty,” said Richard Barakat, M.D., physician-in-chief and director of the Northwell Health Cancer Institute, and senior vice president of the health system’s Cancer Service Line. “We can only move toward a cure for pancreatic cancer with increased public awareness and collaboration on innovate research aimed at advancing more clinical trials for patients.”
Northwell will sponsor the following walks: March 31, New York City at Pier 62-63 at Hudson River Park; April 28, Westchester at Rye Playland Park; July 21, Brooklyn at Marine Park at Carmine Carro Community Center; Sept. 8, Staten Island at Franklin D. Roosevelt Boardwalk and Oct. 6, Long Island at Jones Beach State Park.
“We are delighted to be partnering with Northwell Health for our walks in the New York metropolitan area,” said Kerri Kaplan, president and CEO of the Lustgarten Foundation.
David Tuveson, M.D., P.h.D., Lustgarten’s chief scientist and the director of the Cancer Center and the Lustgarten Foundation Laboratory at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL), and his team are collaborating with Northwell physicians to create pancreatic cancer organoid models from patient tumors. Organoids, which were developed by the Lustgarten Foundation Laboratory at CSHL, are three-dimensional cell culture systems that reproduce a patient’s tumor and test it repeatedly.
The Northwell Health Cancer Institute is in the early stages of developing a comprehensive pancreatic cancer center. The program’s major components will include surgical, radiation and medical oncology, interventional gastroenterology, pathology, radiology, endocrinology, palliative oncology, cancer genetics, nutritional counseling, social work and other services.
To register for any of the walks, visit www.lustgarten.org/walk-for-research or call 866-789-1000.
—Submitted by Northwell Health