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Cancer Moonshot Could Boost National Capital Area's Research Community and Businesses

Friday, September 9, 2016  
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Here's What the Cancer Moonshot Recommendations Could Mean for Greater Washington

Source: Washington Business Journal, Tina Reed, September 8, 2016

At the Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, a computer program called the Georgetown Database of Cancer, or G-DOC, collects massive amounts of patient data surrounding the molecular makeup of their disease.

With the help of that database, Georgetown researchers are able to mine for patterns that might unlock the secrets of how to treat certain cancers.

But soon, that resource may become more powerful as it connects to similar tools at other cancer centers around the country. Creating a national data ecosystem is one of 10 recommendations guiding a national cancer moonshot initiative. Those recommendations were approved at the National Cancer Institute in Rockville on Wednesday. They constitute a list of priorities NCI officials hope will receive additional funding beyond the federal agency's typical budget as part of its moonshot efforts.

"The idea here is to combine these silos into a richer repository to get a fuller perspective of cancer," said Dr. Louis Weiner, the director of the Lombardi cancer center. He is also a member of the Blue Ribbon Panel of experts appointed to create those recommendations to guide the cancer initiative.

The data ecosystem example shows how cancer research in Greater Washington could receive a boost as the result of the national initiative being led by Vice President Joe Biden. 

Read the full article for other ways that the Cancer Moonshot could impact the region.

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