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Roswell Park Cancer Institute
National Cancer Institute; National Comprehensive Cancer Network
Location Buffalo, Erie County, New York, United States
Care system Medicare
Hospital type Teaching, Specialist, Research, Education, comprehensive cancer care
Affiliated university State University of New York
Emergency department n/a
Beds 112
Founded 1898
Lists Hospitals in New York

The Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) is a comprehensive cancer research and treatment center located in Buffalo, New York. Founded in 1898 by Dr. Roswell Park, it was the first dedicated medical facility for cancer treatment and research in the United States. The facility is involved in drug development and conducts clinical research for cancer treatment.

Roswell Park Cancer Institute is the only upstate New York facility to hold the National Cancer Center designation of "comprehensive cancer center" and to serve as a member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network.

The campus spans 27 acres in downtown Buffalo and includes 1.5 million square feet of space equally distributed between clinical programs and research/education functions. A hospital building, completed in 1998, houses a comprehensive diagnostic and treatment center. In addition, the Institute built a medical research complex and renovated existing education and research space to support its future growth and expansion.

Roswell Park Cancer Institute is dedicated to providing total care to the cancer patient; to conducting research into the causes, treatment and prevention of cancer; and to educating the public and the next generation of those who study and treat cancer.

The Institute offers:

  • Innovative research which provides fundamental new understandings of the prevention, causes, control and cure of cancer
  • Access to promising new treatments for patients who develop cancer
  • Unique cancer treatments for patients who develop cancer
  • Unique cancer treatment services which ultimately will lead to better quality of life outcomes
  • Educational resources for the medical professional, para-professional and allied health worker
  • Community outreach programs throughout Western New York, with special emphasis on minority and high-risk populations
  • Solutions in cancer prevention and education leading to a healthier population and reduced public expenditure for preventable cancers and related illnesses

RPCI’s multidisciplinary centers include: the Breast Service; Chemotherapy/Infusion; Dermatology, Soft Tissue Melanoma, Thoracic; Lower Gastrointestinal; Upper Gastrointestinal; Genito-Urology; Head & Neck; Pediatric; Gynecology and Hematology/Neurology/Pain. Supporting these Centers are important clinical resources that include, but are not limited to: Anesthesiology & Critical Care Medicine; Blood Bank/Plateletpheresis; Clinical Research Services; Community Cancer Resource Center; Diagnostic Imaging; Genetics Counseling/Testing; Infectious Disease Service; Nursing; Pain Medicine; Pathology & Laboratory Medicine; Patient Advocacy; Photodynamic Therapy; Psychosocial Support; Radiation Oncology; Rehabilitation (physical, occupational and speech therapy); and Therapeutics (experimental).

RPCI also offers specialized treatments, services and therapies including: High-dose Chemotherapy; Photodynamic Therapy; Gamma Knife; Follow-up Clinic for Long- term Survivors of Childhood Cancer; a Regional Center for Maxillofacial Prosthetics; the Buffalo-Niagara Prostate Cancer Consortium; Clinical Genetics Testing and Counseling; the Center for HIV-related Malignancies; Lymphedema Clinic; Balloon Kyphoplasty; Brain Mapping; Cancer Pain Management Service; High Risk Breast Clinic; Intraoperative MRI; Minimally Invasive Surgical Suite; Mohs’ Surgery; Robotic Surgery and Colorectal Cancer Risk Management Clinic.

Roswell Park has five major basic and translational programs that work to develop new and improved therapies and state-of-the-art diagnostic technology; identify and apply innovative approaches to cancer prevention and early detection; and understand the mechanisms that cause, prevent and control disease. These programs are Biophysical Therapies, Cancer Prevention, Genetics, Therapeutics and Tumor Immunology. Research departments include Biostatistics; Cancer Biology; Cancer Genetics; Cancer Prevention & Population Sciences; Cell Stress Biology; Immunology; Molecular and Cellular Biology; and Pharmacology and Therapeutics.

Previous names:

  • State Pathological Laboratory of the University of Buffalo, 1898-1911
  • State Institute for the Study of Malignant Diseases, 1911-1946
  • Roswell Park Memorial Institute (RPMI), 1946-1992

Historical Firsts:

  • America’s First Cancer Center
  • First example of direct government interest (New York State) in cancer research
  • Developed the world’s first chemotherapy program in 1904
  • Pioneered the prostate specific antigen (PSA) test
  • Pioneered Photodynamic Therapy
  • Pioneered 5-FU and Leucovorin for colorectal cancer – the gold standard chemotherapy for this disease
  • Collaborated on the landmark studies of the Human Genome project
  • Leads the nation in the number of robotic cystectomies performed

Vital Statistics:

  • One of Western New York’s top 20 employers
  • Cited as one of “The Best Places to Work” in WNY by Business First
  • More than 3,200 employees, including 256 physicians and senior scientists, and over 500 nurses
  • Average Length of Service: 9.26 years
  • Active employees who are members of the 25-Year Club (length of service > 25 years): 365
  • Members of The Jurassic Society (retired, but active senior faculty): 19
  • Hospital Admission: 4,539
  • Outpatient Visits: 168,845
  • Patients Under Active Care: 26,041
  • Patient Origin: 39 states, 7 foreign countries
  • Number of Beds: 112
  • Average Length of Stay: 7.1 days
  • Results of Patient Satisfaction Surveys: Over 98 percent of Roswell Park patients consistently rate the care at Roswell Park as excellent or very good and over 97 percent of patients say they would recommend Roswell Park to other cancer patients.
  • Grant monies (per annum): $89.1 million
  • Funded Research Projects: 522
  • License Agreements: 65
  • U.S. Patents: 119
  • Collaborations with Biopharmaceutical Companies: 169

Education Annually:

  • 250 clinical residents/oncology fellows
  • 100 postdoctoral research fellows
  • 196 predoctoral graduate students
  • 75 summer research students in high school and college, medical and dental schools
  • 40 exchange visitors - international research scholars

Biotech Spin-offs

  • AndroBioSys
  • Cleveland BioLabs, Inc.
  • Empire Genomics
  • PersonaDX

Affiliations/Satellites and Research Partners:

  • Amherst Center, Williamsville, NY (Chemotherapy and Infusion Satellite)
  • Bradford Regional Medical Center, Bradford, PA (Network Affiliate)
  • Cayuga Medical Center, Ithaca, NY (Radiation Oncology Satellite and Network Affiliate)
  • King Hussein Cancer Center, Amman, Jordan (Network Affiliate)
  • King Hussein Cancer Biotechnology Institute, Amman, Jordan (Network Affiliate; Research, Clinical and Education Programs)
  • Rochester General Hospital, Rochester, NY (Network Affiliate)
  • University of Puerto Rico Río Piedras Campus (Education)
  • WCA Hospital, Jamestown, NY (Radiation Satellite and Network Affiliate)
  • Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China (Research and Education Programs)


Roswell Park Cancer institute was established in 1898 by Dr. Roswell Park, who was a professor of surgery at the University of Buffalo School of Medicine. It was the first institute to focus on cancer treatment and research in the world. Dr Roswell Park saw that there was a need for cancer care and acted. [1]

Dr Park said that “Only through a deliberate well-planned, combined attack from various directions by means fitted for such work could real advances be made and further the relationship of laboratory work, clinical study and education must be closely associated. [2]

Research started in three rooms in the University of Buffalo School of Medicine. It did not take long to out grow those three rooms. Buffalo citizens saw the importance of cancer research and decided to donated money to purchase land and a new building. The biggest contributor was Mrs. William Gratwik who donated $25,000 dollars. The Gratwick Research Labratory of the University of Buffalo, was constructed in 1901. It was located on High and Elm in Buffalo, NY. [3]

Dr. Park was a busy man he wrote many books, gave lectures, and was the administrator at the cancer research center. In 1904 Dr. Park stepped down from and Dr. Harvey R. Gaylord took over as the 2nd Director of the institute. Dr. Park remained as the head chairmen of the board of trustees. [4]


National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Centers
The National Comprehensive Cancer Network Member Profile
Grad Schools Overview
National Marrow Donor Program Overview
US News & World Report Hospital Directory
Core Grant Renewed
Partnership with the University at Buffalo
Roswell Park Cancer Institute
We Are Roswell Park Institute Publication Version July 2008


  1. ^ Mirand, Dr. Edwin A., Legacy and History of Roswell Park Cancer Institute 1898-1998. Virginia Beach, VA: The Donning Company Publishers pg 9
  2. ^ Mirand, Dr. Edwin A., Legacy and History of Roswell Park Cancer Institute 1898-1998. Virginia Beach, VA: The Donning Company Publishers pg 9
  3. ^ Mirand, Dr. Edwin A., Legacy and History of Roswell Park Cancer Institute 1898-1998. Virginia Beach, VA: The Donning Company Publishers pg. 16
  4. ^ Mirand, Dr. Edwin A., Legacy and History of Roswell Park Cancer Institute 1898-1998. Virginia Beach, VA: The Donning Company Publishers pg 21

Legacy and History of Roswell Park Cancer Institute by Dr. Edwin Mirand
Roswell Park Cancer Institute (

External links[edit]

Category:1898 establishments Category:Cancer organizations Category:Hospitals in New York Category:Healthcare in Buffalo, New York Category:Medical and health organizations based in the United States