LLS Seeks Blood Cancer Research Program with US Military

Testifying before a U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Defense Appropriations, George Dahlman, the senior vice president of public policy for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) requested the necessary funding to create a "stand-alone blood cancer research program" at the US Department of Defense (DOD).

Dahlman wants a 'collaborative public-private effort between the U.S. Military Cancer Institute, the LLS and a blue ribbon panel of scientific academicians,' according to the press release.

"A joint effort, tapping the expertise of both USMCI and LLS, represents a unique opportunity to identify valuable research opportunities and state-of-the-art technology that can address significant questions on the origins and diagnosis of blood cancers," according to Dahlman.

The LLS has good reason to seek a collaboration with the USMCI, since this institute possesses a treasure trove of electronic medical records, including serum and tissue specimens, from an estimated 9 million servicemen and women and their families. A strong link has been made between cancers such as chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), multiple myeloma and a variety of other lymphomas, and those members of the US military serving in wars in Vietnam and the Gulf, making these records all the more valuable for epidemiologists and other researchers to study blood cancers.

But that's not the only reason for the request. Added Dahlman, "DOD research on blood cancers addresses the importance of preparing for civilian and military exposure to the weapons being developed by several hostile nations and to aid in the march to more effective treatment for all who suffer from these diseases."


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