Chicago, Ill., April 5, 2016 – The American Brain Tumor Association (ABTA) joined 75 patient advocacy organizations, professional medical societies and veterans’ organizations in a letter to Congress calling for full funding of the Defense Health Research Programs at the Department of Defense (DoD). This funding is typically included in the annual Defense Appropriations Act.
“Many DoD programs fuel scientific discovery and help bring a novel, interdisciplinary and collaborative approach to research targeting some of the most complex diseases,” said Elizabeth Wilson, president and CEO, American Brain Tumor Association. “While the DoD funds critical cancer research that currently includes pediatric brain tumors, we’re leading efforts to include all brain cancer which not only benefits our U.S. Armed Services personnel and their families, but all Americans impacted by this devastating disease.”
The Defense Health Research Programs funds competitive, peer-reviewed research grants on multiple medical disorders, including cancer. One of these programs, the Peer-Reviewed Cancer Research Program (PRCRP), was funded last year at $50 million to conduct research into 13 eligible cancers and cancer-related disorders (including pediatric brain tumor research). The ABTA has spearheaded an effort to include brain cancer in the PRCRP, and worked with Representative Mike Quigley (D-IL) to direct a bipartisan letter in support of this request that was signed by 28 Democrat and Republican members of the U.S. House of Representatives.
“We are pleased to work in concert with other cancer organizations, rare disease groups and veterans’ organizations to ensure that Congress provides adequate funding for these important research programs,” added Wilson. “This will give us the opportunity to not only preserve research into pediatric brain tumors and traumatic brain injury, but also expand this research to include all types of brain cancer.”
Nearly 78,000 new cases of primary brain tumors are expected to be diagnosed this year. A recent report published in the journal Neuro-Oncology and funded by the ABTA shows malignant brain tumors are the leading cause of cancer-related deaths in 15-39 year olds and the most common cancer occurring for the age group.
The letter, calling for full funding of the Defense Health Research Programs at the Department of Defense (DoD), was sent on April 4 to the House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittees on Defense.
ABOUT THE AMERICAN BRAIN TUMOR ASSOCIATION
Founded in 1973, the American Brain Tumor Association was the first and is the only national organization committed to funding brain tumor research and providing education and information on all tumor types and for all age groups. For more information visit www.abta.org or call 800-886-ABTA (2282).
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