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Blue Ribbon Panel Report: The Power of the Cancer Community Coming Together

, by Douglas R. Lowy, M.D.

On September 7, Blue Ribbon Panel co-chairs Elizabeth Jaffee, Ph.D. (left), Tyler Jacks, Ph.D., and Dinah Singer, Ph.D., presented the panel’s report to the National Cancer Advisory Board.

Credit: National Cancer Institute

Listening to the presentation of the Cancer Moonshot Blue Ribbon Panel report at the National Cancer Advisory Board (NCAB) meeting earlier this week, I was moved and inspired by this culmination of 5 months of work. The report demonstrates the power of the cancer community coming together as it never has before to deliver a promise of progress against cancer. The time, energy, dedication, and ideas that went into the report’s creation have been nothing short of extraordinary, and I'd like to thank the cancer community for participating in this collaborative and important undertaking.

This report represents the collaboration of science, technology, advocacy, social science, and big data to solve some of cancer’s greatest challenges. At the core of the report are 10 bold yet feasible initiatives that can benefit patients by changing the trajectory of our understanding of how cancer develops, how to prevent it, and how to treat it. I am honored to deliver this compelling report to Vice President Biden and my federal colleagues on the Cancer Moonshot Task Force for inclusion in their reports to the President later this fall.

Douglas R. Lowy, M.D. Deputy Director, National Cancer Institute


NCAB members gave a strong endorsement of the report and its 10 recommendations. They also offered constructive feedback, which will be incorporated into the final report that is delivered to the task force and Vice President. The board's suggestions included adding an emphasis on the cross-cutting theme of health disparities, more data on incidence and potential impact, and description of the extensive coordination needed for success.

Once the report has been revised it will replace the draft posted at

NCI stands ready to accelerate cancer research in the critical areas identified by the Blue Ribbon Panel. With the adoption of this action plan, we have taken an important step towards meeting the goals of the Cancer Moonshot and the hopes of cancer patients and their loved ones.

I am confident that the cancer community will build upon this effort and seize this unprecedented opportunity to accelerate progress against cancer.

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