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Inspiring a New Generation to Defy the Bounds of Innovation: A Moonshot to Cure Cancer

buzzz worthy. . .

From Vice President Joe Biden

Three months ago, I called for a “moonshot” to cure cancer.
Tonight, the President tasked me with leading a new, national mission to get this done.
It’s personal for me. But it’s also personal for nearly every American, and millions of people around the world. We all know someone who has had cancer, or is fighting to beat it. They’re our family, friends, co-workers.

Today, cancer is the leading cause of death worldwide. And that’s only expected to increase in the coming decadesunless we make more progress today.
I know we can.

From my own personal experience, I’ve learned that research and therapies are on the cusp of incredible breakthroughs. Just in the past four years, we’ve seen amazing advancements. And this is an inflection point.

Over the course of the past few months, I’ve met with nearly 200 of the world’s top cancer physicians, researchers, and philanthropists. 

And the goal of this initiativethis “Moonshot”is to seize this moment. To accelerate our efforts to progress towards a cure, and to unleash new discoveries and breakthroughs for other deadly diseases

The science is ready. 
Several cutting-edge areas of research and careincluding cancer immunotherapy, genomics, and combination therapiescould be revolutionary. Innovations in data and technology offer the promise to speed research advances and improve care delivery.

But the science, data, and research results are trapped in silos, preventing faster progress and greater reach to patients. It’s not just about developing game-changing treatmentsit’s also delivering them to those who need it.

Right now, only 5 percent of cancer patients end up in in a clinical trial. Most aren’t given access to their own data. At the same time, community oncologistswho treat more than 75 percent of cancer patientshave more limited access to cutting-edge research and advances.

So I plan to do two things.
1.) Increase resourcesboth private and publicto fight cancer.
2.) Break down silos and bring all the cancer fighters togetherto work together, share information, and end cancer as we know it.
And the goal of this initiative is simpleto double the rate of progress. To make a decade worth of advances in five years.

Here’s how we can do it:
Over the next year, I will lead a dedicated, combined effort by governments, private industry, researchers, physicians, patients, and philanthropies to target investment, coordinate across silos, and increase access to information for everyone in the cancer community.

Here’s what that means: The Federal government will do everything it possibly canthrough funding, targeted incentives, and increased private-sector coordinationto support research and enable progress.

We’ll encourage leading cancer centers to reach unprecedented levels of cooperation, so we can learn more about this terrible disease and how to stop it in its tracks.

Data and technology innovators can play a role in revolutionizing how medical and research data is shared and used to reach new breakthroughs.

We will help the oncology community improve communication with doctors across the United States and around the world, so the same care provided to patients at the world’s best cancer centers is available to everyone who needs it.

And we will ensure that the patient community is heardso patients and their families are treated as partners in care, with access to their own data and the opportunity to contribute to research.

And we’re getting started right away.
This Friday, I’ll head to the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine to talk to their physicians and researchers and continue this national dialogue.
Next week, at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, I’ll meet with a group of international experts to discuss the current state of cancer research and treatment, and opportunities to accelerate this fight.

And later this month, I’ll convene and chair the first of several meetings with cabinet secretaries and heads of all relevant agencies to discuss ways to improve Federal investment and support of cancer research and treatment.

Fifty-five years ago, President John F. Kennedy stood before a joint session of Congress and said, “I believe we should go to the moon.”
It was a call to humankind. 

And it inspired a generation of Americansmy generationin pursuit of science and innovation, where they literally pushed the boundaries of what was possible.
This is our moonshot. 

I know that we can help solidify a genuine global commitment to end cancer as we know it todayand inspire a new generation of scientists to pursue new discoveries and the bounds of human endeavor.

That is the history of the journey of this country. If there’s one word that defines who we are as Americans, it’s possibility. These are the moments when we show up.
We must move forward, right now. I know we can.