With the World Health Organisation declaring cancer as the biggest cause of death globally, a leading national Australian charity has started paving the way towards greater global collaboration to help put an end to this disease.
The Australian Cancer Research Foundation today announces the addition of four world-class cancer researchers to their distinguished Medical Research Advisory Committee. For the very first time, two researchers are based internationally.
Professor of Oncology at the University of Wisconsin, Paul Lambert and Associate Professor Connie Trimble from the John Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore will bring a new level of global insight and expertise to the Committee, which is charged with assessing Australian research applications for the ACRF’s multi-million dollar grants.
They have been newly appointed to the Committee together with Queensland’s Professor Geoff Hill from QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, and Professor Angel Lopez from the Centre for Cancer Biology in South Australia.
The increasing worldwide burden of cancer – with 14.1 million newly diagnosed cases in 2012 – demands an even great focus on collaborative, cutting-edge research. Investigation into the basic genetic triggers and behaviours of cancer is now driving research priorities towards preventing and defeating this disease.
Professor Lambert has said, “International collaboration and support is the next step towards building a cancer free future both in Australia and globally.”
The MRAC members are world leaders in cancer research and consider all applications for ACRF grants funding. Chaired by Professor Ian Frazer AC (co-creator of the cervical cancer vaccine), the MRAC selects and recommends the very best Australian research for ACRF funding, ensuring maximum impact and innovation in cancer prevention, diagnosis and cure.
Professor Lambert said, “I’m very excited to be joining 15 other highly esteemed researchers in tackling the task of helping to fund the next possible breakthroughs in cancer research.”
“This is a critical time for us, with cancer overtaking heart disease and AIDs as one of the biggest killers globally.”
“However, despite cancer being the leading cause of death, research is making a huge difference. The outcomes of research have led to a very positive 30 per cent overall improvement in cancer survival rates over the last two decades,” said Professor Lambert.
Chairman of the Australian Cancer Research Foundation Board of Trustees, Mr Tom Dery, said, “We’re thrilled to have such distinguished scientists join our fight to fund world-class cancer research right here in Australia.”
“Professors Lambert and Trimble bring international expertise which is so relevant to our work in funding only the best. Their addition to our scientific committee is a strong affirmation of the value of global collaborations.”
Each cancer scientist who sits on the MRAC is appointed for three years. Through the Australian Cancer Research Foundation, the MRAC has advised on the most effective use of $95million in donations for cutting-edge Australian research.