The National Foundation for Cancer Research (NFCR) today inked its second memorandum of understanding (MOU) within the past half year among major transnational cancer-fighting institutions. This pledge of cooperation follows on the heels of the formal commitment between the chairmen of itself and the China Pharmaceutical Innovation and Research Development Association (PhIRDA), entered into on October 29th, 2017.
The Australia-based Eliminate Cancer Initiative (ECI), represented by Ronald DePinho, M.D., one of its directors and the former president of the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, concluded an MOU countersigned the day prior by NFCR President Sujuan Ba, Ph.D. The document solidifies a relationship between the two organizations which has been growing in recent months. In it, NFCR and ECI target future cross-border collaboration initiatives, and they specify at least one platform to be executed immediately in, among other countries, the U.S., Australia and China: cancer “round table” meetings comprised of key opinion leaders committed to devoting resources to battle the disease.
Envisioned as building upon the momentum of the February 22nd UK Brain Cancer Mission Round Table convened in London, NFCR and ECI will partner with PhIRDA and other top tier Chinese stakeholders for a similar initiative nine days from now in Beijing. A third cancer round table in late April in the U.S., hosted by the National Cancer Institute, will also be conducted.
While NFCR eagerly anticipates and will participate in the U.S. round table, its role in the China Brain Cancer Mission Round Table will be even more extensive. The Foundation will, along with PhIRDA and ECI, co-host the event at Capital Medical University’s Beijing Tiantan Hospital; and many of the participants, consisting of the elite among China’s brain cancer government, industry and academic communities, will be invited by it.
The brainchild of Australian philanthropist and Fortescue Metals Group Chairman Andrew Forrest and his Minderoo Foundation charity, ECI focuses on collaborative projects with high-level potential impacts in the areas of prevention, detection, treatment, clinical trials and survivorship of cancer. Its advisors and director include not only Dr. DePinho, winner of NFCR’s 2009 Szent-Györgyi Prize for Progress in Cancer Research, but too W.K. Alfred Yung, M.D., a leading MD Anderson-based scientist recently funded by NFCR and with whom the Foundation has long had a relationship.