Much has changed since the nonprofit Cowtown Cruisin' for a Cure was founded in 2002 by prostate cancer survivor Chris Goetz to raise awareness of the disease in Tarrant County.
The annual car show, fundraiser and cancer-screening event has grown from about 350 cars and 5,000 people to drawing now almost 500 cars and 20,000 people.
What hasn't changed is the organization's unwavering support of UNT Health Science Center's prostate cancer treatment research. Cowtown Cruisin' for a Cure has donated more than $100,000 in proceeds to support the research of Andras Lacko, PhD.
Dr. Lacko's research explores using nanoparticles to deliver anti-cancer medications directly to cholesterol-hungry cancer cells while avoiding damage to healthy cells. This could prevent the devastating effects of chemotherapy, such as nausea, hair loss, sores in the mouth and throat, and bone-marrow suppression.
"We have been very impressed by the exceptional research at the UNT Health Science Center and, specifically, Dr. Lacko's work," said Terry Mann, Cowtown Cruisin' for a Cure President. "His research is very promising and fits perfectly with our goal to raise money to promote a cure for prostate cancer."
At a ceremony on Sept. 11 at the Moncrief Cancer Institute, Cruisin' for a Cure will give Dr. Lacko its Classic Heroes Award of Gratitude for his work.
Dr. Lacko, Professor of Integrative Physiology and Anatomy, called the nonprofit group one of the "most generous and ardent supporters" of his research. That support is especially important because of steady declines in available federal funding dollars for research.
"Without the support of Cowtown Cruisin' for a Cure, our program could not have survived these difficult times," Dr. Lacko said. "We are most appreciative of their support and hope to contribute to the cure of prostate cancer in the near future."
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