Vice President Continues Quest for Cancer Moonshot

On Thursday, June 29, Vice President Joe Biden hosted a National Cancer Moonshot Summit at Howard University in Washington, DC. AACI President George J. Weiner, MD, was in attendance along with President-Elect Stanton L. Gerson, MD, and Executive Director, Barbara Duffy Stewart, MPH. The Summit brought together more than 350 cancer center directors, physicians, researchers, nurses, patient advocates, and public and private companies with interests in cancer. Many AACI cancer centers were represented at the Summit which featured Dr. Jill Biden and entertainer Carol Burnett as speakers.

In October 2015, the Vice President called for a “moonshot to cure cancer.” Since then, President Barack Obama and the Vice President have announced a national cancer initiative, aimed at making a decade’s worth of progress in five years through a $1 billion research investment.

Last week in conjunction with the Washington, DC Summit, 40 AACI cancer centers hosted regional Cancer Moonshot Summits at 39 sites in 25 states. Over 270 events took place in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Guam. AACI cancer center Summits varied in format from breakout workshops to panel discussions. Some events featured special guest speakers.

In Seattle, former Washington Governor Christine Gregoire addressed the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center Summit, acknowledging “we are all in this together.” In Buffalo, longtime Roswell Park Cancer Institute supporter Representative Brian Higgins addressed the group, while Astronaut and Purdue University alumnus David Wolf joined his alma mater in West Lafayette for the day. Devon Still, defensive end for the Houston Texans and founder of the Still Strong Foundation, participated in the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center Summit. Participants at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute Moonshot Summit received a visit from the Stanley Cup.

The Vice President announced several private and public actions the administration will take in the coming months to accelerate progress but his team continues to gather input from the Washington, DC Summit as well as the regional Summits which took place across the country.

Cancer center hosts of the regional Cancer Moonshot Summits included:

Cancer Therapy & Research Center University of Texas Health Science Center
Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, Case Western Reserve University
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Feist-Weiller Cancer Center, LSU Health Sciences Center in Shreveport
Fox Chase Cancer Center, Temple Health
Fred Hutchsinon Cancer Research Center
Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Iowa
Huntsman Cancer Institute University of Utah
Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center
Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, UCLA
Masonic Cancer Center University of Minnesota
Medical College of Wisconsin Cancer Center
Moffitt Cancer Center
Murtha Cancer Center at Walter Reed
Purdue University for Cancer Research
Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University
Roswell Park Cancer Institute
Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute
The Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center at Baylor College of Medicine
The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center James Cancer Hospital & Solove Research Institute
The University of Arizona Cancer Center
UAMS Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute
UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center
UK Markey Cancer Center
UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center/Duke Cancer Institute/Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center
University of Chicago Comprehensive Cancer Center
University of Florida Health Cancer Center
University of Hawaii Cancer Center
University of Illinois Cancer Center
University of Miami, Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center
University of New Mexico Comprehensive Cancer Center
University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute
University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
UT Southwestern Medical Center
Wilmot Cancer Institute, University of Rochester Medical Center
Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University
WVU Cancer Institute