Marin Residents Lead Charge to Cure the Deadliest Childhood Cancer With the PNOC Foundation


For any parent whose child is diagnosed with brain cancer, life is forever changed. For Marin County locals Bruce and Allyn Campbell, their sons diagnosis was a call to action. 

For too many parents, a pediatric brain tumor diagnosis ends in the loss of their child,” Allyn states. We wanted to help accelerate research and find cures so that fewer families would suffer devastating loss, and to improve treatments that will help lessen the long-term impacts on surviving children like our son.” 

The Campbells learned that research and clinical trials are grossly underfunded. Relatively speaking pediatric brain cancer gets a disproportionate amount of the national cancer research budget, despite being the deadliest cancer for children.

Thus, they founded the nonprofit PNOC Foundation to raise awareness for pediatric brain cancer and to support PNOC, which they describe as the most innovative and collaborative pediatric brain cancer research effort the world has ever seen.” 

A pediatric patient. Photo: Kate Nagle.

The Pacific Pediatric Neuro-Oncology Consortium was founded in 2012 at UCSF by two visionaries, Dr. Michael Prados and Dr. Sabine Mueller. PNOC is dedicated to bringing new therapies to children and young adults with brain tumors, and its goal is to improve patient outcomes by translating the latest findings in brain tumor biology into better treatments. 

Since PNOC was established, more progress has been made towards the understanding of the biology of the most highly malignant brain tumors than over the past 40 years combined,” states Prados, a fellow Marin County resident.  

From hopeful Bay Area beginnings, PNOC has rapidly grown to bring promising new treatments to the best childrens hospitals across the U.S. — and now across the world. Every child should be afforded the opportunity to have a clinical trial; thats their right as far as Im concerned,” Prados says. 

Join Marins philanthropic community and the esteemed doctors of PNOC to raise critical funding for PNOC on Nov. 13 at the PNOC Foundation Gratitude Gala at Cavallo Point. Tickets for the gala are now available.