Cancer Moonshot program is ‘close to gigantic progress’, Joe Biden says
Vice-presidents $1bn effort on behalf of cancer research has seen improved information-sharing, report says, but its future is unclear
Vice-president Joe Bidens Cancer Moonshot initiative to speed the development of cancer treatments has made some important strides such as increased information-sharing among researchers but still faces challenges in many areas, according to a report on Monday.
The White House is still seeking about $700m from Congress for the project. With Barack Obama leaving office in January, it is also unclear how much of the initiative will continue under a new administration.
Microsoft and Amazon have committed to creating cloud storage for the effort, according to the report, which summarizes the work completed so far and outlines a path forward over the next five years.
Ride-sharing services Uber and Lyft will help patients get to the doctor and to clinical trials.
Im going to devote the rest of my life to working on this, and I think were perilously close to making some gigantic progress, Biden told reporters.
The $1bn moonshot project was announced by Obama during his State of the Union address in January. Since then, Biden, whose son Beau died last year at age 46 from brain cancer, has announced multiple investments and collaborations in support of the project.
The Cancer Moonshot initiative has also spurred the defense department to use artificial intelligence to analyze its collection of tissue from tumors to look for patterns.
The US Patent and Trademark Office has launched a pilot program to cut in half the time to review certain cancer therapy patent applications from an average of about two years to less than 12 months.
Obama praised Biden for his leadership on the issue and said his administration was laying the groundwork for future presidents to continue the fight against cancer.
While we are going to be leaving soon, what I think we are going to be able to leave behind is an architecture and a framework for advancing cancer research, Obama told reporters after his meeting with Biden.