Earlier this month, days after President Obama announced the “moonshot” to find a cancer cure during his State of the Union, Vice President Biden visited Penn’s Abramson Cancer Center to kick off the national effort he said aims to “accelerate the progress already underway” – much of which is happening right here.”
Carl June, MD, director of Translational Research at the ACC, and Bruce Levine, PhD, director of Penn’s Clinical Cell and Vaccine Production Facility, took Biden on a tour of the research hub that will serve as the epicenter of its pioneering personalized T cell therapy program. After, Biden led a roundtable discussion with Penn experts in immunotherapy, cancer prevention, surgery, genomics, and more, as well as ACC director Chi Van Dang, MD, PhD. Biden was also joined by University President Amy Gutmann and National Institutes of Health director Francis S. Collins, MD, PhD.
"Cancer politics," Biden said, are keeping people in their respective corners. Data sharing needs to continue but expand and silos at and among academic medical centers and drug companies need to be broken down, he said, in order to speed up progress. Biden stressed that more support from the private and public sector and philanthropists is essential to get us closer to cures and better treatments for the host of cancers diagnosed every day—some, he recognized, more complex and deadly than others.
Click here to see more photos of the historic visit.
Photo caption (from left) Vice President Biden, Bruce Levine, Carl June, and Amy Gutmann.