Consider this startling truth: on average, less than half of all women diagnosed with lung cancer will be alive one year after diagnosis. In fact, lung cancer is the leading cancer killer of women and men in the United States, particularly because by the time it's detected, it has spread too far. More must be done to save lives, and through collaboration, the American Lung Association is opening the doors to new opportunities to defeat this terrible disease.

I'm proud to announce that we're joining Stand Up To Cancer and LUNGevity Foundation to fund a new Stand Up To Cancer – LUNGevity  –  American Lung Association Lung Cancer Interception Dream Team—bringing together leaders from across disciplines, institutions, countries and specialties to collaborate and advance research to benefit patients more quickly.

The new Dream Team will be funded at $6 million, with each organization contributing $2 million. It's the largest American Lung Association investment for lung cancer research to date, and just one of our many research investments to support patients with lung cancer and other lung diseases.

What's a Dream Team?

Dream Teams are a collection of innovative scientists carrying out collaborative research with the potential to yield patient benefits, faster. The new Lung Cancer Interception Dream Team will be tasked with investigating early molecular or other changes that lead to cancer development with the ultimate goal to stop the progress of lung cancer before it starts.

The work of this Dream Team will inform future strategies and new approaches for early detection and intervention in lung cancer.

Early detection is crucial to saving lives. That's because lung cancer is easier to treat in its early stages before it has spread. In addition to reducing risks, it's our best tool against lung cancer right now. Cancer interception is a promising new approach to cancer prevention and treatment. Instead of identifying cancer after it's developed, the potential exists to prevent malignant changes before they happen—and stop lung cancer before it begins. It's a bit like a football game: a touchdown can be prevented by an interception. 

We're seeking the best and brightest research pioneers for the Dream Team—and the process will be competitive. In the coming months, Stand Up To Cancer, with support from its scientific partner the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), will issue a new "Call for Ideas" to the scientific community, seeking proposals from collaborative teams offering approaches  with the greatest promise of patient benefit. 

This Dream Team will work to change the face of cancer research and push the dream of ending cancer as we know it closer to reality.

The American Lung Association is proud to collaborate with Stand Up To Cancer and LUNGevity Foundation as we invest in research to study these critical problems and identify opportunities to save lives through the new Lung Cancer Interception Dream Team.

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