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Home » 1. The need for cancer research

1. The need for cancer research

Why do we need more research on cancer?

PMID: 34560371


Cancer in EU: 1.2 million death per year (25% of the total number of death)


Cancer in EU: 28.3 % of men’s deaths; 21.8% of women’s deaths (21.8 %)


Standardized death rate for cancer iN EU: 252.5 per 100 000 inhabitants


Median age at cancer diagnosis in men: 65


Median age at cancer diagnosis in females: 74

After 170 years of intense investigation to decipher biological bases of cancer and despite individual initiatives by Europe’s Member States to further understand and better prevent, detect and treat this disease, cancer remains the second leading cause of death in Europe and one of the greatest health challenges facing Europe. In about half of patients, the disease resists the existing therapeutic options. Currently, 1.2 million people die from cancer every year across Europe.

More than 6,000 disease victims are children and adolescents, cancer being the leading cause of child mortality from disease in Europe, and over half a million of European citizens are childhood cancer survivors dealing with long-term effects of the disease and its treatment.

The incidence of most cancers increases dramatically as we age. In 2017, the EU rate for persons aged 65 years and over was 13 times as high as it was for persons aged less than 65 years. With increasing life expectancies, cancer has become the number one cause of death in both males and females aged 60-79 years in EU, a trend that will continue with Europe’s changing demographics. Unhealthy lifestyles and working conditions are other recognized causes of cancer.

An analysis by gender shows large differences in standardised death rates for cancer iN EU. In 2017, for men the rate (335.9 per 100 000 male inhabitants) was 73 % higher than that for women (193.9 per 100 000 female inhabitants).

Therefore, new level of investment to better prevent, diagnose and treat cancer is an urgent need. Taking advantage of data and data sciences may represent the much-awaited 2030 breakthrough.