September 24 is World Cancer Research Day, an initiative organized by a collaboration of professional societies, research organizations, and other institutions. In advance of the event, the following declaration was published in order to outline the goals of the initiative:
Cancer is projected to become the leading cause of death worldwide, with an increase to 21.6 million new cases per year predicted by 2030.
The loss of years of life and productivity together with disability from cancer account for the largest economic cost on a global scale compared to other causes of death including infectious diseases. Urgent action must be taken to prevent unnecessary deaths and suffering due to cancer and to reduce the great economic burden and social impact of this disease.
The predicted increase in the burden of cancer calls for greater supportive efforts in different areas. One of the most important is to support and promote research on the causes, prevention, and early detection of cancer as a key foundation for controlling the disease. This increased investment will complement vital efforts towards the discovery of a cure for cancer or transforming the disease into a chronic illness—both approaches translating into higher survival rates. Cancer research findings to date are responsible for the current opportunities to prevent up to 50% of cancers; for the 50% survival rate among those who are diagnosed with the disease; and for the development of less aggressive treatments of some tumors, thus improving quality of life for patients.
Cancer research still faces great challenges, such as developing additional effective prevention and early detection strategies; progressing in diagnostic procedures; developing treatments that save lives at a lower cost; enhancing international collaborating networks; establishing sustainable funding models; increasing research training opportunities; and defining the infrastructure to allow a fast implementation of the research findings into national health-care systems.
For all of the above reasons, the World Declaration for Research on Cancer calls for the active involvement of citizens, enterprises, institutions, and leaders in diverse areas and activities to join efforts to promote research in order to reduce the number of people who develop cancer and to improve survival rates and quality of life among patients.
With the purpose of accelerating advances in cancer research, the undersigned endorse this Declaration and commit themselves to work towards the following goals for 2025:
Sign the declaration at worldcancerresearchday.com/declaration; learn what organizations are promoting this initiative at worldcancerresearchday.com/who-we-are; and see how you can get involved on social media at worldcancerresearchday.com/wcrd-social-media.The content in this post has not been reviewed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Inc. (ASCO®) and does not necessarily reflect the ideas and opinions of ASCO®.