What Is Neuroblastoma?
Neuroblastoma is one of the most complex and devastating of all pediatric cancers. It is a tumor of the sympathetic nervous system that quickly spreads throughout the entire body. It is a cowardly disease that primarily strikes young children before the age of 5. Neuroblastoma is extremely rare, with approximately 700 new cases a year seen in the U.S. Less that 30% of children diagnosed with high-risk disease survive.
Those fortunate enough to survive face a lifetime of treatment-related physical and emotional challenges, including the likelihood of developing a secondary malignancy. Only one hurdle stands between the unacceptable status quo and better treatments and a cure for this awful disease -- support for research.
A Few Facts To Consider...
- The National Cancer Institute allocates $200 million out of its annual $5.1 billion budget to pediatric cancer research. That is just 4%, despite the fact that pediatric cancer is the number one disease killer of children in the U.S.
- There is virtually no private pharmaceutical investment in neuroblastoma research due to a lack of market incentives.
- The American Cancer Society dedicates less that 1% of its $1 billion in annual public revenues to pediatric cancer research. No figure is publicly available for neuroblastoma.