Why We Need Research

Research provides hope and saves lives. This is especially true when it comes to lung cancer research. Lung cancer research can help develop better treatments, increasing the survival and quality of life for patients. Research can provide a better and longer future for those diagnosed with lung cancer as well and can also ultimately increase the number of survivors living with the disease.

The Lung Association supports lung cancer research so we can help prevent lung cancer cases, and failing that, prolong the lives of lung cancer patients. We have made some progress, but we plan to invest more, as lung cancer remains the leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States.

Our Lung Cancer Research Program

The American Lung Association is committed to funding lung cancer research. As part of our Awards and Grants Program, a large part of funds goes toward research on lung cancer prevention, treatment and quality of life. The primary goal of this lung cancer research program is simple: improve and save lives. The secondary goal is almost as important: To fund top-notch lung cancer researchers at important career crossroads to and gain long-term commitment to lung cancer research. Without the life-long dedication of lung cancer researchers and a large and active community of people trying to improve patients' lives, important and much-needed discoveries would be impossible.

What Research Is Being Done?

Thanks to the medical breakthroughs led by Lung Association researchers and their colleagues worldwide, our lung cancer researchers have made significant contributions to the field of lung cancer. For example, biomarker testing and targeted therapies have helped advance the area of personalized treatment (finding the unique genetic makeup of a person's tumor and developing and using drugs that are designed to be most effective for that patient).

Currently funded Lung Association researchers are:

  • Applying new technologies and innovative methods to critical research investigations
    • Using Next Generation Nanotechnology to Target Lung Cancer
    • Reversing Drug Resistance in  Lung Cancers
    • Using a Virus to Treat Lung Cancer 
    • Chromatin Factors impacting Lung Cancer
  • Delivering patient forward advances in research:
    • Identifying metabolic alterations in lung cancer-associated cachexia
    • Testing Methods to Increase Lung Cancer Screening Among Quitline Callers
    • Overcoming obstacles for cellular immunotherapy against lung cancer
    • Developing nanoparticles to target drug resistance

Lung Cancer Researchers

Visit our Meet the Researchers section to view our lung cancer researchers and their studies.

How You Can Be a Part of Research

Lung Cancer Registry

The Lung Cancer Registry is a database of medical information collected from thousands of lung cancer patients. Researchers study this health data to gain a better understanding of the disease, which can ultimately lead to better outcomes for patients. By participating in the Registry, you not only will help advance lung cancer research, but you will also be able to learn about new clinical trial opportunities that may help in your own treatment program.

Learn more about the Lung Cancer Registry and how to sign up.

Lung Cancer Clinical Trials

Read questions and answers about clinical trials and see our Lung Association listing of current trials.

Download our checklist to help you talk with your doctor about clinical trials.

You can also search the Lung Cancer Clinical Trials Matching Service, provided by a partnership between the American Lung Association and EmergingMed. Patients can search for clinical trials that match their specific diagnosis and treatment history.

Page last updated: August 19, 2021

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