Research Summary

Health Services

Both clinician and patient decisions influence the choices about the type of treatment a patient will receive for localized prostate and kidney (renal) cancer. Matthew Cooperberg, MD, MPH is conducting an ongoing research program to study national prostate cancer management trends, based on data from CaPSURE and other sources. His analyses have looked at changes in cancer risk over time, testing and treatment for prostate cancer, local variation in treatment, and the impact of socio-demographic factors on type of treatment and outcomes. Through the creation of a San Francisco General Hospital (SFGH) prostate cancer patient registry, preliminary analysis show that low socioeconomic status patients are treated for a higher percentage of high-risk disease than patients with a higher socioeconomic status. Using data from CaPSURE, the NCDB, SFGH and in collaboration with the Urologic Diseases in America project he continues to explore these topic in depth.

Prostate Cancer Risk Assessment and Comparative Effectiveness Research

Properly treating prostate cancer requires determining how likely is it that the cancer will progress. Cooperberg led the team that developed the UCSF-CAPRA score, a prostate cancer risk assessment tool that has been validated in several multi-institutional studies in the U.S. and Europe. CAPRA predicts biochemical recurrence-free survival (PSA level does not rise) after radical prostatectomy with an accuracy at least as good as more mathematically complex nomograms that require complex tables or computer software to calculate and other risk assessment instruments. The score is easy to calculate, and can be used to predict an individual's likelihood of metastasis, cancer-specific mortality, and overall mortality after treatment by surgery, radiation therapy, or androgen deprivation therapy.

Cooperberg is currently developing a post-operative extension of the CAPRA score (CAPRA-S). After surgery additional information is available from the pathologist's analysis of the removed prostate. This information can help identify men who will benefit from additional therapy such as radiation and/or hormonal therapy after surgery. CAPRA-S will help in that decision making process. Cooperberg is also collaborating with a group of Japanese scientist to develop a prediction instrument specifically applicable to high-risk patients and patients receiving androgen deprivation therapy (J-CAPRA). As new biomarkers, such as genomic and advanced imaging data, are proven valid by UCSF Urology and collaborating laboratory investigators, Cooperberg plans to integrate the information into the current standard measures of risk and outcomes to improve risk assessment. These findings will help men determine with greater confidence whether active surveillance, surgery, radiation, hormonal therapy, or some combination may be most appropriate for them.

Because accurate risk assessment is essential to compare the effectiveness of different prostate cancer treatments, Cooperberg is currently conducting such comparison studies using CaPSURE data. These data will provide a unique source of insight for future comparative effectiveness research.


Cooperberg is collaborating on a project that will lead to better clinical care for cancer survivors. His efforts have helped to develop UCSF’s Urologic Oncology Database (UODB) into a comprehensive data repository for clinical information about patients treated for prostate, bladder, and renal cancers. With the Urology Department’s information experts Cooperberg is developing an automated process to further augment UODB by automatically transferring data from the UCSF Medical Center’s information system into UODB. In collaboration with UCSF Breast Oncology and a health care web services company Cooperberg is developing an electronic survey for cancer patients. Patients will complete a health history and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) survey prior to their first visit to the clinic and at defined intervals after treatment. This effort is expected to help patients and clinicians track HRQOL outcomes, such as urinary and sexual function, after treatment. The survey will help physicians to identify those patients who may need to be seen in clinic more or less frequently.

Small Renal Masses

In collaboration with the laboratory of John Kurhanewicz, PhD, Cooperberg is conducting a study to see if magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) can be used to non-invasively diagnosis small renal tumors. MRS is a specialized technique associated with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). MRS equipment can be used to pick up signals from different chemical nuclei within the body. A preliminary laboratory study is using tissue to identify the specific MRS signals associated with a variety of renal tumors. Once renal tumor signals have been identified, Cooperberg plans to test the ability of MRS to accurately analyze renal tumors in patients. This will be done by using MRS imaging technology on patients who are already scheduled for renal cancer surgery prior to their operation. The pre and post surgery information can be analyzed to determine if the information collected non-invasively by the MRS technology matches the histology and grade of the actual tumor.

Research Funding

  • August 10, 2016 - July 31, 2021 - Improving Prostate Cancer Outcome Prediction Through Noninvasive exRNA Assessment , Principal Investigator . Sponsor: NIH, Sponsor Award ID: R01CA198145
  • August 8, 2012 - May 31, 2017 - Prospective validation of a multi-marker prostate cancer prediction model , Co-Principal Investigator . Sponsor: NIH, Sponsor Award ID: R01CA160816


Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, BA, 1991-95, English
Yale University, New Haven, CT, MD, MPH, 1995-00, Medicine, Health Policy

Honors & Awards

  • 1995
    College honors: summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, high honors in major, Presidential Scholar, Rufus Choate Scholar, B. William Hochman Prize in American Literature
  • 1996
    American Cancer Society Research Fellowship
  • 1999
    AMA John Conley Ethics Essay Contest, honorable mention
  • 2003
    UCSF Prostate Cancer Research Symposium, 2nd place, Clinical Research
  • 2004
    UCSF Prostate, Breast, Prostate SPORE Scientific Retreat, honorable mention, Clinical Research
  • 2005
    Northern California Urology Resident Research Symposium, 1st place, Clinical Research
  • 2006
    Northern California Urology Resident Research Symposium, 3rd place, Clinical Research
  • 2007
    AUA Gerald P. Murphy Prostate Scholar
  • 2007
    Northern California Urology Resident Research Symposium, 2nd place, Clinical Research
  • 2007
    Western Section AUA Miley B. Wesson Resident Essay Contest, 3rd place
  • 2008
    Society of Urologic Oncology Poster Session, 3rd place overall
  • 2008
    Western Section AUA Miley B. Wesson Resident Essay Contest, 3rd place
  • 2008
    Western Section AUA Poster Session I, 1st place
  • 2017
    2016 physician award, Marin Prostate Cancer Information and Support Group

Selected Publications

  1. Tallman JE, Wallis CJD, Zhao Z, Huang LC, Penson DF, Koyama T, Goodman M, Hamilton AS, Wu XC, Paddock LE, Stroup A, Cooperberg MR, Hashibe M, O'Neil BB, Kaplan SH, Greenfield S, Hoffman KE, Barocas DA. Correction to: Prostate volume, baseline urinary function, and their association with treatment choice and post-treatment urinary function in men treated for localized prostate cancer. Prostate Cancer Prostatic Dis. 2023 Mar 08.  View on PubMed
  2. Shee K, Cowan JE, Balakrishnan A, Escobar D, Chang K, Washington SL, Nguyen HG, Shinohara K, Cooperberg MR, Carroll PR. Limited Relevance of the Very Low Risk Prostate Cancer Classification in the Modern Era: Results from a Large Institutional Active Surveillance Cohort. Eur Urol. 2023 Mar 02.  View on PubMed
  3. Sabbagh A, Washington SL, Tilki D, Hong JC, Feng J, Valdes G, Chen MH, Wu J, Huland H, Graefen M, Wiegel T, B?hmer D, Cowan JE, Cooperberg M, Feng FY, Roach M, Trock BJ, Partin AW, D'Amico AV, Carroll PR, Mohamad O. Development and External Validation of a Machine Learning Model for Prediction of Lymph Node Metastasis in Patients with Prostate Cancer. Eur Urol Oncol. 2023 Mar 01.  View on PubMed
  4. Cooperberg MR, Meeks W, Fang R, Gaylis FD, Catalona WJ, Makarov DV. Time Trends and Variation in the Use of Active Surveillance for Management of Low-risk Prostate Cancer in the US. JAMA Netw Open. 2023 Mar 01; 6(3):e231439.  View on PubMed
  5. Nik-Ahd F, Waller J, De Hoedt AM, Garcia MM, Figueiredo JC, Carroll PR, Cooperberg MR, Freedland SJ. Seeing the unseen: how can we best identify transgender women within the Veterans Affairs healthcare system's electronic medical record? J Sex Med. 2023 Feb 22.  View on PubMed
  6. Szymaniak JA, Washington SL, Cowan JE, Cooperberg MR, Lonergan PE, Nguyen HG, Meng MV, Carroll PR. The natural history of a delayed detectable PSA after radical prostatectomy. Prostate Cancer Prostatic Dis. 2023 Feb 10.  View on PubMed
  7. Leapman MS, Wang R, Loeb S, Seibert TM, Gaylis FD, Lowentritt B, Brown GA, Chen R, Lin D, Witte J, Cooperberg MR, Catalona WJ, Gross CP, Ma X. Use of Monitoring Tests Among Patients With Localized Prostate Cancer Managed With Observation. J Urol. 2023 Feb 08; 101097JU0000000000003159.  View on PubMed
  8. Cooperberg MR. Active Surveillance in Michigan: What Is Possible When Payers Partner with Physicians. Eur Urol. 2023 Jan 27.  View on PubMed
  9. Moore CM, King LE, Withington J, Amin MB, Andrews M, Briers E, Chen RC, Chinegwundoh FI, Cooperberg MR, Crowe J, Finelli A, Fitch MI, Frydenberg M, Giganti F, Haider MA, Freeman J, Gallo J, Gibbs S, Henry A, James N, Kinsella N, Lam TBL, Lichty M, Loeb S, Mahal BA, Mastris K, Mitra AV, Merriel SWD, van der Kwast T, Van Hemelrijck M, Palmer NR, Paterson CC, Roobol MJ, Segal P, Schraidt JA, Short CE, Siddiqui MM, Tempany CMC, Villers A, Wolinsky H, MacLennan S. Best Current Practice and Research Priorities in Active Surveillance for Prostate Cancer-A Report of a Movember International Consensus Meeting. Eur Urol Oncol. 2023 Jan 27.  View on PubMed
  10. Cooperberg MR, Mbassa R, Walker D, Meeks W, Lockefeer A, Jiang B, Li T, Johnston K, Fang R. Insights from the AQUA Registry: a retrospective study of anticholinergic polypharmacy in the United States. Ther Adv Urol. 2023 Jan-Dec; 15:17562872221150572.  View on PubMed
  11. Nik-Ahd F, Cooperberg MR, Freedland SJ. Reply to Sandra Patricia Garc�a Nader, Sebasti�n Pe�a Rodr�guez, and Cesar Alejandro Diaz Ritter's Letter to the Editor re: Farnoosh Nik-Ahd, Andrew Jarjour, Jane Figueiredo, et al. Prostate-specific Antigen Screening in Transgender Patients. Eur Urol. 2023;83:48-54. Eur Urol. 2023 Jan 16.  View on PubMed
  12. Chu CE, Leapman MS, Zhao S, Cowan JE, Washington SL, Cooperberg MR. Prostate cancer disparities among American Indians/Alaskan Natives in the United States. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2023 Jan 11.  View on PubMed
  13. Van Blarigan EL, Chan JM, Sanchez A, Zhang L, Winters-Stone K, Liu V, Macaire G, Panchal N, Graff RE, Tenggara I, Luke A, Simko JP, Cooperberg MR, Carroll PR, Kenfield SA. Protocol for a 4-arm randomized controlled trial testing remotely delivered exercise-only, diet-only, and exercise + diet interventions among men with prostate cancer treated with radical prostatectomy (Prostate 8-II). Contemp Clin Trials. 2023 Jan 05; 125:107079.  View on PubMed
  14. Shore ND, Cooperberg MR, Tomlins SA. Antiandrogen Treatment vs Active Surveillance for Patients With Prostate Cancer-Reply. JAMA Oncol. 2023 Jan 01; 9(1):150-151.  View on PubMed
  15. Tallman JE, Wallis CJD, Zhao Z, Huang LC, Penson DF, Koyama T, Goodman M, Hamilton AS, Wu XC, Paddock LE, Stroup A, Cooperberg MR, Hashibe M, O'Neil BB, Kaplan SH, Greenfield S, Hoffman KE, Barocas DA. Prostate volume, baseline urinary function, and their association with treatment choice and post-treatment urinary function in men treated for localized prostate cancer. Prostate Cancer Prostatic Dis. 2022 Dec 08.  View on PubMed
  16. Eggener SE, Berlin A, Vickers AJ, Paner GP, Wolinsky H, Cooperberg MR. Reply to M. Baboudjian et al. J Clin Oncol. 2022 Dec 02; JCO2202061.  View on PubMed
  17. De B, Pasalic D, Barocas DA, Wallis CJD, Huang LC, Zhao Z, Koyama T, Tang C, Goodman M, Hamilton AS, Wu XC, Paddock LE, Stroup A, Cooperberg MR, Hashibe M, O'Neil BB, Kaplan SH, Greenfield S, Penson DF, Hoffman KE. Reply by Authors. J Urol. 2022 12; 208(6):1239.  View on PubMed
  18. Nik-Ahd F, Jarjour A, Figueiredo J, Anger JT, Garcia M, Carroll PR, Cooperberg MR, Vidal AC, Freedland SJ. Prostate-Specific Antigen Screening in Transgender Patients. Eur Urol. 2023 Jan; 83(1):48-54.  View on PubMed
  19. Samora NL, Wallis CJD, Huang LC, Tallman JE, Zhao Z, Hoffman K, Morgans A, Cooperberg M, Goodman M, Greenfield S, Hamilton AS, Hashibe M, Kaplan S, O'Neil B, Paddock LE, Stroup A, Wu XC, Koyama T, Penson DF, Barocas DA. Association between body mass index and localized prostate cancer management and disease-specific quality of life. BJUI Compass. 2023 Mar; 4(2):223-233.  View on PubMed
  20. Joyce DD, Wallis CJD, Huang LC, Hoffman KE, Zhao Z, Koyama T, Goodman M, Hamilton AS, Wu XC, Paddock LE, Stroup A, Cooperberg MR, Hashibe M, O'Neil BB, Kaplan SH, Greenfield S, Penson DF, Barocas DA. The Association Between Financial Toxicity and Treatment Regret in Men With Localized Prostate Cancer. JNCI Cancer Spectr. 2022 11 01; 6(6).  View on PubMed

Go to UCSF Profiles, powered by CTSI