William J Catalona, M.D. is a researcher and prostate cancer surgeon. Dr. Catalona is known for having been the first to show that a simple blood test that measures levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) is the most accurate method for detecting prostate cancer and for having helped develop the "free" PSA test as a means of improving the accuracy of prostate cancer screening. Dr. Catalona established and directed the largest single-institution prostate cancer-screening program in the United States, including 36,000 men in the St. Louis area. He also led national studies that gained approval of the PSA and free PSA blood tests by the US Food and Drug Administration.
Dr. Catalona is currently conducting research in the genetics of prostate cancer. His multi-institutional research group has collected DNA samples and clinical data on hundreds of brothers with prostate cancer. Studies of these patients have revealed several new regions in the human genome that might contain prostate cancer susceptibility genes and genes that control prostate cancer aggressiveness. Identification of prostate cancer genes could lead to new tests for prostate cancer as well as possible new means for treating or preventing prostate cancer.
Dr. Catalona specializes in prostate cancer surgery and is recognized as an expert in performing the "nerve-sparing" radical prostatectomy that can preserve sexual potency. He has performed more than 5,000 of these operations, more than anyone else in the world. His patients have come from all 50 states in the United States, as well as from Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and Central and South America, and include baseball greats Joe Torre, Stan Musial, and Bob Watson. Dr. Catalona has received awards and honors, including the James Ewing Society Award for Cancer Research, the American Urological Association's Gold Cystoscope Award, Hugh Hampton Young Award, and Eugene Fuller Medal, and the American Association of Genitourinary Surgeons' James Stockwell Barringer Medal and Edward L. Keyes medal. He was elected to the Johns Hopkins Society of Scholars and the St. Louis Academy of Science. He has served on advisory boards of the National Kidney Foundation and American Cancer Society and the editorial boards of several medical journals. He has been principal investigator on grants or awards from the National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, American Cancer Society, and CaP CURE. He is medical director of the Urological Research Foundation, editor of its newsletter, Quest, and has developed a popular prostate cancer information website, drcatalona.com. He is author of more than 320 articles in scientific journals, books, and book chapters in medical texts. He has also made several award-winning videotapes of cancer operations.