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National supermarket chain Safeway has raised $10.3 million for prostate cancer research during its most recent month-long, chain-wide campaign.
For the 13th year in a row, Safeway dedicated an entire month to raising money and increasing awareness for the fight against prostate cancer, which currently affects more than two million American men and remains the second-leading cause of cancer death for men in the United States. To date, Safeway's customers have donated nearly $86.8 million to the cause.
"We'd like to express our gratitude to our customers who have, year after year, shown commitment to this important cause by contributing and helping to save lives, one dollar at a time," said Larree Renda, Safeway EVP and chair of the Safeway Foundation.
To identify the most promising and groundbreaking prostate cancer research projects for funding, Safeway and The Safeway Foundation partner with a range of cancer research organizations such as the Prostate Cancer Foundation, Stand Up to Cancer and the University of California at San Francisco. The donations have funded more than 1,600 research projects, yielding several leading-edge, life-saving treatments.
Over the past three years alone, six new prostate cancer drugs were approved by the Food and Drug Administration and dozens of new drugs are currently in trials due to Safeway's support. Safeway's support has also led to a treatment that may decrease cancer deaths by 20 percent per year by deploying new combinations of surgery and medications early in the course of the disease, according to the grocer.
A new advancement in early detection that was funded by Safeway and The Safeway Foundation is a simple test to detect a unique piece of DNA found only in prostate cancer cells. The test gives doctors the potential to catch prostate cancer many years earlier than previously possible. When used with a standard Prostate-Specific Antigen test and a checkup, doctors can not only determine if a patient has prostate cancer, but can also predict how aggressive the cancer might be and potentially avoid biopsies and radical treatments, such as chemotherapy, radiation and surgery.
Pleasanton, Calif.-based Safeway operates 1,412 stores in the United States and 223 stores in Canada.