WASHINGTON Oct 17 U.S. Vice President Joseph
Biden will release on Monday a report on the administration's
Cancer Moonshot initiative designed to speed the development of
new cancer drugs and diagnostics.
The project, led by Biden, aims to double the speed of
cancer research over five years by increasing collaboration
between government and industry, simplifying clinical trials and
fostering greater transparency in research.
The $1 billion project was announced by President Barack
Obama during his State of the Union address in January. Since
then Biden, whose son Beau died last year at age 46 from brain
cancer, has announced multiple investments and collaborations in
support of the project.
The report, prepared by a multi-agency task force,
summarizes the work completed so far and outlines a path forward
over the next five years.
"It's also a report to the American people, sharing the
story of the spirit of discovery that defines this country and
that gives me every confidence that we can do this," Biden said
in a separate statement to the president, made available ahead
of its formal delivery on Monday afternoon.
Among other initiatives, the report describes new measures
to accelerate development of blood tests to diagnose cancer and
identify which patients might benefit from specific treatments.
"Every agency in the task force, from the Department of
Energy and the Department of Defense to the patent office is
doing something new to move this effort forward," Greg Simon,
executive director of the moonshot task force said on a
conference call with reporters ahead of the report's delivery.
Among the new measures being taken: The Defense Department
will use artificial intelligence to analyze its collection of
tissue from tumors to look for patterns that could predict
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has launched a pilot
program to cut in half the time to review certain cancer therapy
patent applications from an average of about two years to less
than 12 months.
Ride-sharing services Uber and Lyft will help
patients get to the doctor and to clinical trials, and Microsoft
and Amazon have committed to create cloud
storage to the effort.
The Environmental Protection Agency will invigorate a
program to reduce radon exposure by working with the Department
of Housing and Urban development in an effort that could save
3,200 lives a year starting in 2020, Simon said.
(Reporting by Toni Clarke in Washington; Editing by Cynthia