Vice President Joe Biden has proposed a
Cancer Moonshot initiative that lists research areas for which the administration desires
funding. If Congress approves the project, the monetary outlay will be
over and above current funds designated for cancer studies. The initiative’s
goal entails expediting progress against the disease through focusing
on topics scientists find most promising. Here are the areas of emphasis
Immunotherapy: This treatment doesn’t involve the toxicity of chemotherapy, and
it has shown value for some challenging types of cancer. The Moonshot
has recommended a national clinical trial to determine why the intervention
works for some patients but not for others.
Genetics: Researchers believe genetics accounts for the differences in cancer aggressiveness
and efficacy of treatment between patients. The initiative advocates the
creation of a national network to file genetic profiles of tumors. This
system would enable patients to share their data as well as volunteer
for new clinical trial remediations that may help them.
While the above two areas represent the primary focal points, the project
lists some additional topics of particular interest. These include a quest
to uncover factors that drive childhood cancer along with ways to reduce
the troubling side effects of treatment.
The Moonshot also proposes to perform genetic tests on newly diagnosed
colon cancer patients. As inherited genetic mutations stimulate the development
of 3 percent of these types of malignancies, family members of patients
who have the defect could discover if they are at risk. For more information
about this type of cancer, see
Newly-Diagnosed with Colorectal Cancer? Ask Questions!
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