New "Cure4Cancer" Hub Launched to Raise Awareness of International Clinical Trials
NEW YORK, March 6, 2023 — The Asia Society Policy Institute (ASPI), in collaboration with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK), Bloomberg New Economy International Cancer Coalition, and others have jointly launched Cure4Cancer (C4C), a new online informational hub to raise public awareness about international clinical trials and their unique capacity to extend, improve, and save lives. The new site cure4cancerglobal.org is the first portal of its kind bringing together information about international collaboration on clinical trials and regulatory harmonization.
Scientifically, a primary barrier to finding life-saving new cancer treatments or prevention is the time it takes to conduct clinical trials. Over 19 million new cancer cases are diagnosed worldwide every year, but only less than 5% enroll in clinical trials, despite the fact that clinical trials are widely recognized by clinical practice guidelines as the best treatment for patients with cancer. This is often due to a lack of patient awareness or understanding of clinical trials and their major advantages, such as access to the most advanced treatments and monitoring.
Bureaucratic red tape and a lack of coordination between government regulatory agencies in different countries also limit clinical trials and patient access to innovative treatments. The international standardization of clinical trials and concurrent approvals has proven capable of shortening the time needed to roll out a new cancer treatment from 15 years to two or three years. Better standardization could help 10% of all cancer patients reduce their risk of death by 10% to 20% annually, representing one to two million lives saved every year.
ASPI and MSK have worked together since 2017 to address these barriers through international policy research, public awareness, and private diplomacy. The new C4C website, its most significant public-facing contribution to-date, brings together key information for the public about patients’ personal journeys with clinical trials, how to find and join a study, perspectives from physicians and other leaders around the world, the history of international clinical trials collaboration, and milestones from a global public health policy perspective.
While China and the U.S. account for almost 40% of the world’s 10 million annual cancer deaths, no country or region is spared, and the global cancer burden is expected to increase. To fight this common enemy of humanity, greater international collaboration on cancer clinical trials is required. C4C is an international movement that brings together patients, clinicians, scientists, policymakers, regulators, industry, philanthropy, the media, and other closely related stakeholders to work together in the global fight against cancer. All are welcome to join in the effort to accelerate the Cure4Cancer in this lifetime.
Asia Society President and CEO and the 26th Prime Minister of Australia, the Hon. Dr. Kevin Rudd said: “To accelerate the eradication of cancer globally, we need multi-stakeholder, multi-regional collaboration which brings together academia, industry, government, patient advocacy and policy think tanks from different regions for collective action to promote both patient-centric clinical trials and international regulatory harmonization. This would not only provide global public goods by building the policy, scientific and technological infrastructure for international public health collaboration, but could also become the new ping-pong diplomacy between the U.S. and China, bringing some stabilizing and positive force for the bilateral relationship and beyond.”
Dr. Bob Li, Medical Oncologist and Physician Ambassador to China and Asia-Pacific at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center; Senior Fellow on Global Public Health at the Asia Society Policy Institute’s Center for China Analysis, said: “Clinical trials are the critical step of translating scientific discovery into saving lives. It currently takes on average 10 to 15 years to develop any new therapeutics because we work in silos and simply can’t find the right patients in need for the right treatment. We have now done proof of concept to show that we can lead these breakthroughs in a much quicker time frame of 2-3 years [if] we all work together to break down the silos in a multiregional, international fashion. If we do this at scale – if everybody’s doing international trials, getting them through regulatory agencies, having governments work together from the outset and through the approval process – we can really bring lifesaving innovation to more patients in need much faster.”
Jing Qian, Co-Founder and Managing Director of the Asia Society Policy Institute’s Center for China Analysis, said: “Cancer is a common, transnational enemy of humanity, but it can be fixed. Better international coordination and harmonization of cancer clinical trials could save as many as two million lives every single year. A core part of our international Cure4Cancer movement is to raise public awareness of the extremely undervalued potential of international clinical trials and in turn to open up more political space, empower more policy innovations and promote patient-centric treatments globally. Hopefully in the end we can improve the lives of the millions of patients and families suffering from cancer, and accelerate the cure for cancer for the whole of humanity.”
To speak with Jing Qian or any of our other experts at Asia Society Policy Institute please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org. To speak with Dr. Bob Li at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, please reach out to email@example.com.