Urothelial carcinoma remains one of the most common malignancies, with about 81,000 new diagnoses and approximately 17,000 associated deaths in 2022 alone.1 Survival numbers are dependent on early diagnosis and drop with delayed diagnosis and/or advanced stages of disease.1 Both muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC) and non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) are associated with substantial morbidity and reduced quality of life.2,3
Bladder cancer continues to afflict more than 80,000 patients in the United States and at least 550,000 persons globally.1,2 Although the scientific community could not meet in person last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this did not stop the ongoing exchange of ideas, research, and clinical trials. In this article, I highlight some of the most important advances in non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC) and the key data to anticipate in 2021.
In 2019, more than 80,000 Americans will be diagnosed with bladder cancer, and more than 17,000 patients will die from it.1 Whether it’s the neighbor we greet each morning, the aunt we joke with at family reunions, or even the face we see each day in the mirror, bladder cancer affects us all. It is a complex, challenging disease, and its prognosis has improved only recently after three decades of relative stagnancy.
It is with great pleasure that I welcome you to the Center of Excellence on Bladder Cancer. “The time is now”. This is an often used phrase in literature, often enough to be considered a cliché. Yet it is exactly this term which applies to the field of bladder cancer research today.

After decades of relative stagnation our field is moving at a dizzying pace toward meaningful improvements in patient care for those suffering from this disease. From better understanding of variant histology, knowledge of the genetic profile of tumors, identification of key signaling pathways, advances in immunotherapy, the adoption of enhanced recover pathways, and more, we now have the tools to make truly meaningful improvements in our patients’ outcomes.

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