Texas begins $3 billion Project in Cancer Research and Development
Posted Oct 04 2009 10:01pm
Texas is also talking about creating the first statewide clinical trial network. Around $260 million a year will be spent on cancer research and $30 million in preventive services such as early detection screenings. The 3 billion is to be spent over a decade and some are wondering given the current economic status if the funding and state will be able to follow through and add on some politics while you are at it. The first year the state did not fully fund the project and they hope to recoup some of those funds, while others are somewhat afraid too of big Pharma taking advantage of the funding, so everything doesn’t quite appear to be ironed out yet, but they have put the call out for researchers to head on over. BD
Texas is ready to try by investing $3 billion over the next decade in cancer research and prevention, which would make the state the gatekeeper of the second largest pot of cancer research dollars in the country, behind only the National Cancer Institute.
"I don't know anyone that would stand shoulder-to-shoulder with what they're trying to do," said Robert Urban, executive director of the Koch Institute for Innovative Cancer Research at MIT.
That gee-whiz impression is what Texas leaders sought in 2007, when the state created the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas through an ambitious bond measure approved by voters. Lance Armstrong, champion cyclist and cancer survivor, sold the plan to voters, and Gov. Rick Perry said he dreamed of a day "we talk about cancer the same way we talk about polio."
Texas is now putting out the call to scientists: Come and get the money.
No other state comes close to the amount of cancer research dollars Texas has pledged. California voters in 2004 approved a $3 billion plan for a stem cell research agency, which opponents tied up in court for two years over the ethics of creating and destroying embryos from which the cells could be harvested.
Massachusetts in 2008 passed a $1 billion, 10-year initiative to fund life sciences research, but some have wondered about the viability of that big-ticket endeavor given the state's economic woes.