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Taiwan joins US-led coalition of cancer-fighting nations

  • Publication Date: September 23, 2016
  • Source: Taiwan Today
Taiwan joins US-led coalition of cancer-fighting nationsResearchers from Taoyuan City-based CGU Molecular Medicine Research Center review proteogenomics data to gain a better understanding of cancer at the molecular level. (CNA)

Taiwan has joined the ranks of a U.S.-led coalition of eight cancer-fighting countries working to combat the disease and roll out cutting-edge prevention and management measures.

The nation’s participation in the so-called Cancer Moonshot initiative was announced by U.S. Vice President Joe Biden at the Social Good Summit Sept. 19 in New York. Biden, who was put in charge of the project by President Barack Obama, lost his son Beau last year to brain cancer at age 46.

Taiwan’s involvement in the effort was formalized through a memorandum of understanding concluded earlier this year by Academia Sinica, the nation’s top research institution, and Taoyuan City-based Chang Gung University in northern Taiwan with the U.S. National Cancer Institute.

Under the initiative, AS and CGU will work with institutions from Canada, Germany, Switzerland, Japan, South Korea and mainland China in the field of proteogenomics, as well as those from Serbia, Sweden and Japan in prevention, research, screening and treatment procedures. The goal is to find a cure for cancer by 2030.

Y. Henry Sun, a distinguished research fellow with AS who represented Taiwan at the summit, said a national biomedical database, an extensive collection of pathology samples and state-of-the-art medical technology make the country a valuable addition to the coalition.

“Taiwan is a recognized world-leader in analysis of biochemical markers in cancerous cells and is playing an essential role in related research on the international stage.”

According to Shen Chen-yang, a research fellow at Academia Sinica and CEO of Taiwan Biobank, the nation brings other benefits to the cancer-fighting table. These include high-quality medical resources, the National Health Insurance system and Taiwan Biobank—an Academia Sinica-run database containing extensive genetic information drawn from Taiwan’s ethnic Chinese population.

This year’s Social Good Summit was sponsored by the 92nd Street Y, Mashable, the U.N. Foundation and the U.N. Development Program. It examined the impact of new media and technology on global social good undertakings, and attracted prominent figures like Biden; Lisa Jackson, vice president of Apple Inc.’s Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives; and Samantha Power, U.S. ambassador to the U.N. (SCK-E)

Write to Taiwan Today at ttonline@mofa.gov.tw


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