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AACR Applauds Cancer Objectives in Healthy People 2020, Underscores Importance of Federal Funding for Research

December 3, 2010

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The American Association for Cancer Research commends the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on the establishment of science-based, 10-year objectives to reduce the incidence of cancer, which was included as part of the Healthy People 2020 initiative that launched yesterday.

The Healthy People 2020 framework points out that “continued advances in cancer research, detection and treatment have resulted in a decline in both incidence and death rates for all cancers.”

“This particular statement underscores the importance of federal funding for cancer-related biomedical research,” said Margaret Foti, Ph.D., M.D. (h.c.), chief executive officer of the AACR. “If we are to improve the health of all Americans, the Administration and Congress must continue to invest in the National Cancer Institute and the National Institutes of Health.”

The AACR is pleased that Healthy People 2020 features numerous objectives aimed at reducing tobacco use, the leading cause of cancer, which accounts for nearly 30 percent of all cancer deaths and is causally linked to 18 different cancers. In April, the AACR issued a comprehensive policy statement on tobacco and cancer, which called for immediate action to stem the global tide of tobacco-related death and suffering, and to improve public health through tobacco cessation and prevention efforts.

The AACR also applauds the emphasis that the HHS placed on reducing obesity rates in the United States, which has been shown to decrease the risk of cancer. In 2001, experts concluded that cancers of the colon, breast (postmenopausal), endometrium (the lining of the uterus), kidney, and esophagus are associated with obesity. Some studies have also reported links between obesity and cancers of the gallbladder, ovaries and pancreas.

Healthy People 2020’s goals and resources related to cancer can be found here.

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The mission of the American Association for Cancer Research is to prevent and cure cancer. Founded in 1907, the AACR is the world’s oldest and largest professional organization dedicated to advancing cancer research. The membership includes 32,000 basic, translational and clinical researchers; health care professionals; and cancer survivors and advocates in the United States and more than 90 other countries. The AACR marshals the full spectrum of expertise from the cancer community to accelerate progress in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer through high-quality scientific and educational programs. It funds innovative, meritorious research grants, research fellowships and career development awards. The AACR Annual Meeting attracts more than 18,000 participants who share the latest discoveries and developments in the field. Special Conferences throughout the year present novel data across a wide variety of topics in cancer research, treatment and patient care. The AACR publishes six major peer-reviewed journals: Cancer Research; Clinical Cancer Research; Molecular Cancer Therapeutics; Molecular Cancer Research; Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention; and Cancer Prevention Research. The AACR also publishes CR, a magazine for cancer survivors and their families, patient advocates, physicians and scientists, providing a forum for sharing essential, evidence-based information and perspectives on progress in cancer research, survivorship and advocacy.

Media Contact:
Rachael Cullins
(202) 898-0668

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