The mission of the European Association for Cancer Research (EACR) to advance cancer research for the public benefit is placed under the spotlight here by Open Access Government
The European Association for Cancer Research (EACR) is a professional membership association for those who work and study in the field of cancer research. With no less than 10,000 members globally, their clear mission is simply: “The advancement of cancer research for the public benefit: from basic research to prevention, treatment and care.” (1)
The society aims to foster communication and collaboration between its community of members, for example, by organising conferences. EACR realise just how important conferences are to help researchers share their findings and build on their knowledge but finding funding to attend events can be very difficult, particularly for early-career researchers. That is why they strongly support the idea of bursaries to funds early-career members to take part in conferences. (2)
In addition, raising the profile of cancer research in Europe and to argue the case for sustained political and economic support, are two crucial elements of EACR’s work.
Founded in 1968, supporting the cancer researchers who play such an important role in fighting the disease has not diminished in its importance for EACR. Certainly, cancer researchers have been at the heart of many lifesaving breakthroughs, such as the identification of oncogenes and tumour suppressor genes, as well as the sequencing of genomes that together, have paved the way towards targeted therapies, for example, against chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML).
Recent knowledge accumulated over the decades about how the immune system functions at the molecular level have resulted in effective immunotherapies for cancer patients who previously had no therapeutic options available to them. We find out more about advances in cancer research on EACR’s website, as quoted below.
“More recently the knowledge accumulated over decades about how the immune system functions at the molecular level has resulted in effective immunotherapies for cancer patients who previously had no therapeutic options. Basic research also paved the way to new ways to diagnose and monitor cancer non-invasively, using simple blood tests. Very rarely are these breakthroughs made by a ‘lone genius’ – they come about due to the hard work of many scientists, many labs, and many scientific discussions, disagreements, results and replications.”
The EACR believe that while a research career in the field can be hard, it can also be remarkably exciting and rewarding, particularly when one realises that one is a part of the wider picture. The EACR is of the opinion that a strong, open, cross-border scientific community is important now more than ever, and as such, they strongly encourage Travel Fellowships that fund early career researchers to develop their careers by visiting labs elsewhere.
Looking to the future, EACR has exciting plans, indeed, they want to help cancer researchers build the career they deserve in academia and industry. EACR also are aware that research has no borders and will vehemently defend this concept and help researchers to make their voice heard. (3)
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