Federally funded research that provides a deep understanding of cancer is spurring advances against many types of the disease. With a strong bipartisan commitment from Congress to keep investment in biomedical research a national priority, we can accelerate our pace of progress and save more lives from cancer, according to the seventh annual American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Cancer Progress Report, released today.
Basic research in the fields of immunology and cancer genetics has recently been harnessed to develop two new forms of cancer treatment: immunotherapy and precision medicine. As detailed in the report, the utility of these treatments is expanding rapidly. In May 2017, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) heralded a new dawn for precision medicine when it approved the immunotherapeutic pembrolizumab (Keytruda) for treating patients with any solid tumor harboring specific genetic characteristics. This is the first anticancer therapeutic approved based on cancer biomarkers rather than the location in the body where the cancer originated.
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