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In July 2003, Drs. James Watson and William Manger met at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory to discuss the importance of attempting to differentiate malignant from benign pheochromocytomas on a molecular basis. The workshop held during the 16th-18th November 2003 at Banbury Conference Center, Cold Spring Harbor brought together a select group of experts in the field to present data and discuss the current state of knowledge and research about malignant pheochromocytoma. The workshop focused on applications of new genomics-based tools for establishing the pathways involved in the development of pheochromocytoma and for identifying molecular targets for diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment of malignancy in patients with these neuroendocrine tumors. An important objective of the workshop was to establish a consortium of investigators for a coordinated and concerted evidence-based approach to future studies of pheochromocytoma. PRESSOR, was established over the months that followed the workshop at Cold Spring Harbor.
In December 2008, founders and members of PRESSOR established a new executive committee and a formal organizational constitution. Also, working groups on specific topics of pheochromocytoma research were put in place and national representatives were identified.