When Kathy Martin’s doctor suggested that the longtime smoker be tested for lung cancer, the 62-year-old resident of Graham, located about 80 miles from Fort Worth, didn’t have to travel far to be screened.
Thanks to a program funded in 2018 by the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas, or CPRIT, Martin was able to have the necessary scans at her hometown hospital at no cost to her. To her surprise, the screening revealed that she had early-stage cancer. She un-derwent surgery to remove a tumor.
Martin is one of thousands of North Texans who have been diagnosed and treated for cancer through programs funded by CPRIT, a state agency created with the approval of Texas voters in 2007. Authorized to issue $3 billion in bonds, CPRIT has funded groundbreaking cancer re-search and prevention programs in Texas, making our state a leader in the ght against this deadly disease.
Thus far, more than $2.4 billion has been awarded to 108 academic institutions, nonpro t or-ganizations and private companies in Texas. With the balance running down, Texans are be-ing asked to approve more funding for CPRIT in a ballot initiative next month. This worthy investment in the health of Texans deserves your support.
CPRIT has been a game-changer for cancer care in Texas. The infusion of state funds has en-abled our health care system to build a cancer- ghting infrastructure by recruiting top re-searchers to the state, expanding lifesaving clinical trials, extending cancer prevention pro-grams into rural areas and supporting the development of new drugs and medical devices. At M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, a CPRIT grant helped to recruit immunologist Jim Allison, who last year was honored with the Nobel Prize for discoveries that led to the de-velopment of immunotherapy treatments.
In Dallas, our community has bene ted widely from CPRIT. UT Southwestern Medical Center has been a top bene ciary, receiving nearly $460 million in grants. The funding has helped attract more than 50 top researchers to Dallas, enhancing the quality and accessibility of in-novative cancer care throughout the region.