Washington, D.C. – V. Craig Jordan, OBE, PhD, DSc, FMedSci, Scientific Director at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, a part of Georgetown University Medical Center (GUMC), says a new nationwide report about cancer cases and death rates is generally good, but he expresses deep concern about cancer’s number one killer.
The Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer issued by the National Cancer Institute, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Cancer Society and other organizations shows cancer death rates and diagnoses in the United States for men and women continued to decline between 2003 and 2007, the most recent reporting period available. Also of significance, the report finds, for the first time, a decrease in lung cancer death rates in women.
Jordan cautions that despite that decline, lung cancer still kills more people than any other type of cancer.
“A huge effort has been made to control lung cancer through education and awareness of the harms of cigarette smoking,” says Jordan, but he says he’s concerned about cigarette marketing that targets young women.
“It seems everywhere I turn, I see young women smoking. Frankly, we have to do a better job at countering the efforts of cigarette marketers for the sake of public health.”
Jordan, a breast cancer researcher, points out that the incidence rates for breast cancer in women have declined along with colorectal, uterine, cervical bladder and oral cavity cancers. Rates increased for kidney, pancreas, and thyroid cancers as well as for leukemia and melanomas of the skin in women.
In men, incidence rates have declined for cancers of the lung, colon and rectum, oral cavity and pharynx, stomach, and brain (malignant only) while rates have risen for kidney, pancreas and liver cancers, as well as melanoma of the skin.
The report is co-authored by researchers from the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACCR), the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the American Cancer Society. The report appeared online March 31, 2011, in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, and will be in print on May 4, 2011.
To view the full report, go to www.oxfordjournals.org.
For a Q&A on this Report, go to http://cancer.gov/newscenter/pressreleases/ReportNation2011QandA.
For Spanish translations of this press release and Q&A, go to http://cancer.gov/espanol/noticias/ReportNation2011SpanishRelease.
About Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center
Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, part of Georgetown University Medical Center and Georgetown University Hospital, seeks to improve the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of cancer through innovative basic and clinical research, patient care, community education and outreach, and the training of cancer specialists of the future. Lombardi is one of only 40 comprehensive cancer centers in the nation, as designated by the National Cancer Institute, and the only one in the Washington, DC, area. For more information, go to http://lombardi.georgetown.edu.
About Georgetown University Medical Center
Georgetown University Medical Center is an internationally recognized academic medical center with a three-part mission of research, teaching and patient care (through MedStar Health). GUMC’s mission is carried out with a strong emphasis on public service and a dedication to the Catholic, Jesuit principle of cura personalis -- or "care of the whole person." The Medical Center includes the School of Medicine and the School of Nursing & Health Studies, both nationally ranked; Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, designated as a comprehensive cancer center by the National Cancer Institute; and the Biomedical Graduate Research Organization (BGRO), which accounts for the majority of externally funded research at GUMC including a Clinical Translation and Science Award from the National Institutes of Health. In fiscal year 2009-2010, GUMC accounted for nearly 80 percent of Georgetown University's extramural research funding.