Cancer Moonshot US


Today, the White House declared a renewed commitment to the Cancer Moonshot initiative, originally launched in 2016 during Joe Biden’s tenure as Vice-President. The overarching mission of the Cancer Moonshot is to expedite progress in the fight against cancer. In this latest announcement, President Biden outlines an ambitious objective of reducing the death rate from cancer by half within the next 25 years.

The aim of the Cancer Moonshot, US project is to dramatically accelerate efforts in cancer research. Within 7 years, the goal is to accelerate the results and findings that would normally require twice the amount of time. The initiative will closely interact with patients, patient organisations, cancer researchers, cancer centers, universities, governments, and the private and philanthropic sectors. In this collaboration, the aim is to prevent, diagnose, and treat cancer.

Since the initial launch of the Cancer Moonshot in 2016, the cancer community has made measurable progress toward three ambitious goals: to accelerate scientific discovery in cancer, foster greater collaboration, and improve the sharing of cancer data. Early in 2022, President Biden announced a reignition of the Cancer Moonshot, highlighting new goals: to reduce the cancer death rate by half within 25 years and improve the lives of people with cancer and cancer survivors.

By focusing on areas of cancer research that are most likely to benefit the American people as a result of new investment, the Cancer Moonshot has brought together a large community of patients, advocates, researchers and clinicians who are dedicated to advancing research to end cancer as we know it.


2022-2027. The Biden-Harris Administration Sets Goal of Reducing Cancer Death Rate by at least 50 Percent Over the Next 25 Years, and Improving the Experience of Living with and Surviving Cancer.Biden-Harris

Over the first 20 years of this century, the age-adjusted death rate from cancer has fallen by about 25 percent, which means more people are surviving cancer and living longer after being diagnosed with cancer. That was enabled by progress on multiple fronts:

  • Science brought us treatments that target specific mutations in many types of cancer –for example, in certain types of lung cancer, leukemia, and skin cancers.
  • It has also provided therapies that use our immune system to detect and kill cancer cells and these immunotherapies are making a big difference in certain skin cancers, blood cancers, and others.
  • We also have cancer vaccines – like the HPV vaccine –which prevents the cause of up to seven kinds of cancer.
  • We developed tools, like low-dose CT scans and refined use of colonoscopies, which help us detect lung cancer and colorectal cancers early when there are better treatment options.
  • Starting in the early 1990s, we also made progress against tobacco use through targeted public health education campaigns as well as new, more effective approaches to smoking cessation. We have seen a 50 percent decrease in adult long-term cigarette smoking and a 68 percent drop in smoking rates among youth.

Five years ago, with the bipartisan passage and enactment of the 21st Century Cures Act, Congress invested $1.8 billion, providing seven years of new funding for cancer research in many areas including studies on cancer disparities, new clinical trial networks to drive drug discovery, and innovative projects examining childhood cancer. The law streamlined cancer-related decision-making at the FDA through the formation of an Oncology Center of Excellence, so that effective treatments can be approved faster and patients can have more direct access to information about the regulatory process.

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In June 2016, President Obama called on Vice President Biden to lead this Cancer Moonshot initiative. A cancer task force was established, and an action plan was initiated to address the following key topics

  • Reach funding of USD 1.8 billion
  • Develop and use a super-computer called Watson (to gather all relevant information, and act as an open cancer repository related to cancer patients)
  • Establish a network for direct patient involvement
  • Research and development within 13 different areas, see examples below:
    • Reduce the risk of therapy resistance
    • Childhood cancer
    • Reduce the side effects during cancer treatment
    • Increase knowledge on prevention and early detection of cancer
    • Develop new technologies to characterise tumours and test therapies

One of the most important messages that was stated by the former Vice President Joe Biden was the need to “break down the silos and start to collaborate”. This urgent declaration is directed towards all researchers, clinicians, organisations, institutes (both academic and within the private sector) that are working in the field of cancer. This statement is of utmost importance because we are looking for as many ways as possible to cure cancer.



Cancer Moonshot: 5 things to know –