What could be a cancer mission objective if we join our forces in the fight against cancer?

Thierry Philip, Sakari Karjalainen, Francesco De Lorenzo, Kathi Apostolidis, Claudio Lombardo*, Mef Nilbert, Denis Lacombe, Philip Poortmans, Tit Albreht, Pamela Kearns, Gilles Vassal

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The European cancer burden is growing rapidly, with an estimated 2 million deaths a year according to the latest research. As almost half of cancers are diagnosed after the age of 65, and considering the aging European population, a tidal wave of cancer cases will sweep across Europe within the coming decades. Without major action, the additional number of annual cancer cases is expected to rise from 4.2 million to 5.2 million by 2040. If we are to reach plateauing numbers by 2040 (as a minimum goal), this would require 0.75% annual reduction in risk and 1% reduction in risk of death. These challenges call for attack from various angles, coordinated efforts, rational strategies, initiatives throughout the cancer trajectory, activities to reduce inequities, and implementation of evidence-based measures. In order to defeat the societal challenges of cancer through innovation, Europe will need to join forces and connect the European Commission and the member states, politicians and citizens, industries and patient associations. A cancer mission should thus unite the public and patient viewpoint to the perspective of cancer professionals. The authors describe a plan that has been agreed upon among some of the major European Cancer organizations and associations. This plan uses a cancer mission as a tool and must deliver robust medical evidence to patients and doctors through high-quality research delivering sustainable and affordable strategies for prevention, treatment, and follow-up.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)447-455
Number of pages9
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2019


  • epidemiology
  • Hematology–oncology
  • molecular oncology
  • pediatric oncology
  • prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'What could be a cancer mission objective if we join our forces in the fight against cancer?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this