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Notes From the Field: Seeing Research in Action

May 15, 2023

More than 1,000 supporters gathered in Fairmont Park for PanCAN PurpleStride Philadelphia 2023 to support the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network (PanCAN). Wistar’s Dr. Rahul Shinde is a PanCAN research grant recipient, and our lab was honored to attend the event and represent the scientific community. People of all ages wore purple to show support with many teams commemorating loved ones lost. I, too, walked in memory of a good friend and uncle who both lost their battles with pancreatic cancer. 

The atmosphere was emotional and inspiring as we heard from a 19-year survivor who described his journey through treatment and recovery. The 5-year survival rate has increased from 10% to 12% in the last few years due in part to PanCAN research and funding. It is their goal to reach a 20% survival rate by 2030.

PanCAN PurpleStride Philadelphia raised over $600,000 with 60 similar events held nationwide. The funds support services for patients and their families, along with research grants to improve early detection and treatment of pancreatic cancer. The Shinde Lab raised more than $1,000 thanks to the support of family and friends. 

Walking among this Philadelphia community of supporters reminds us all of our responsibility to make our research count. PanCAN PurpleStride Philadelphia was a realization of how meaningful our work is. There is heartbreak surrounding pancreatic cancer, but also considerable hope in scientific advancement. 

Notes From the Field Series is written by a member of Wistar’s scientific community and reflects on life, both in and out of a busy biomedical research lab. SK Reiser is a graduate student in the lab of Dr. Rahul Shinde.