American Association for Cancer Research

Press Releases: 2009

American Association for Cancer Research Lauds Senator Arlen Specter for Leadership in the Fight Against Cancer


February 17, 2009

PHILADELPHIA - Following the passage of the American Recovery and Investment Act of 2009 by Congress, the American Association for Cancer Research praised Republican Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania for his leadership in including a $10 billion investment in the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

"Senator Specter has demonstrated a long-standing commitment to the advancement of biomedical research and to the fight against cancer," said Margaret Foti, Ph.D., M.D. (h.c.), CEO of the American Association for Cancer Research. "Through high courage, leadership and foresight, Senator Specter has helped to secure a vitally needed $10 billion investment in the NIH that will support a new age of discovery and patient care."

Investment in the NIH drives innovation that leads to economic growth and job creation. NIH funds projects at universities, hospitals and research institutions across the country. According to Families USA, every dollar spent on research creates $2.25 in local economic activity. NIH research has fueled the biotechnology economy and has been critical to revolutions in drug discovery and patient care.

In a continuing effort to combat disease and improve public health, the NIH last year awarded 47,000 grants totaling $20.4 billion that supported salaries, equipment and infrastructure across the country. The average NIH research grant supports seven jobs.

An estimated $1.3 billion of the total $10 billion will be used by the National Cancer Institute to support projects aimed at devising new and better ways to combat the more than 200 diseases we call cancer.

"The additional money comes at a propitious time, when so much basic science is ripe for translation to the clinic," said Foti. "We are grateful to Senator Specter for recognizing both the immediate opportunity that increased funding provides and the need for stable support of our nation's scientific enterprises over the long term. These investments in cancer research will save lives and decrease the current $219 billion burden of cancer on our health care system and the economy."

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The mission of the American Association for Cancer Research is to prevent and cure cancer. Founded in 1907, AACR is the world's oldest and largest professional organization dedicated to advancing cancer research. The membership includes more than 28,000 basic, translational and clinical researchers; health care professionals; and cancer survivors and advocates in the United States and 80 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. The AACR Annual Meeting attracts more than 17,000 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 five major peer-reviewed journals: Cancer Research; Clinical Cancer Research; Molecular Cancer Therapeutics; Molecular Cancer Research; and Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. The AACR's most recent publication and its sixth major journal, Cancer Prevention Research, is dedicated exclusively to cancer prevention, from preclinical research to clinical trials. The AACR also publishes CR, a magazine for cancer survivors and their families, patient advocates, physicians and scientists. CR provides a forum for sharing essential, evidence-based information and perspectives on progress in cancer research, survivorship and advocacy.

Media Contact:
Jeremy Moore
267-646-0557
Jeremy.moore@aacr.org